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Reader comment on item: More on Those Alcohol-shy Taxi Drivers
in response to reader comment: Safraz, redux

Submitted by Safraz (United States), Oct 29, 2006 at 20:39


1. Just because the motto of the United States is "From many, one" does not make the culture of the people one culture. Perhaps we are using different definitions of the word "multiculturalism," but I see America as "multicultural" because it is one nation that is made up of many cultures. Yes it is the reality, but I would argue that it was also the intention - in the spirit of the pilgrims who came to escape religious persecution, so do many immigrants come today to escape political persecution (usually in the form of economic subjugation under authoritarian regimes) elsewhere. And the idea was to create a place free of discrimination based on your cultural or religious beliefs.

2. I hope you are not arguing that anti-Semitism was not a major problem in this country just a few generations ago, because then I'd just ask you to go talk to any Jewish grandmother or grandfather and ask them what they experienced as new immigrants to this country. I trust that you are instead arguing that the nation was always Judeo-Christian because its roots are from the Old Testament and the 10 Commandments. My point is that this was not recognized in conservative circles until recently (after the Jews were accepted into the mainstream) and frankly it is used as a way to separate the mainstream in America from the Muslim immigrants. In any case, I believe in America and I believe that Muslim Americans will eventually be accepted into the mainstream much like Jewish Americans are today. This is the essence of how America differs from Europe - true and real multiculturalism - not cultural ghettos

3. I am in complete agreement with you that those who want religion to dictate the laws of the state should be fought - but I think that is true whether that religion is Islam or Christianity. The state's function is not to dictate religion or morality. That said, I do not believe the state should be godless either because God is after all part of our culture. There must be a balance, but a balance that favors respect for all religions and all cultures, with an understanding that the majority culture will be dominant. So for example, I have no problem with the 10 commandments in the courthouse as a symbol of the majority culture of the country, as long as the ten commands are not enforced as the law of the land.


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