[col. writ. 8/22/10] (c) '10 Mumia Abu-Jamal
In Manhattan, the controversy over the placement of a mosque (or Islamic house of worship) just a few mere blocks from what is now known as 'Ground Zero' -- the site of the New York plane strikes on 9/11, rages on.
Sides have been assembled, and arguments have been hurled like mental Molotov cocktails on both sides of the fray.
The argument, no matter how resolved, shows us how empty is the Constitution, which has an express provision protecting free religious practice.
What an argument for those who claim fealty to the Constitution!
For a right that can't be practiced is no right at all.
One is reminded of how the Constitution 'protected' the rights of Blacks after the Reconstruction Amendments to the Constitution were passed from 1865 to 1870. It looked fine on paper, but over a hundred years later they had no reality in the lives of millions of Blacks, who couldn't vote, couldn't sit on juries, serve in public office, or who lived in segregated housing.
The 'rights' existed on paper, but such rights being practiced offended the sensibilities of southern whites.
Americans treat the actual document (the Constitution) as Holy Writ, papers protected from the ravages of time and temperature, and held behind sophisticated security systems.
As for what is says: not so much.
--(c) '10 maj