Apologists for the proposed Ground Zero mosque in New York City initially adopted a defensive posture. They assured us that all Muslims wanted to do by building the fifteen story, multimillion Park51 cultural center and mosque was to promote healing between different cultures and religions. That story didn't sell very well among most Americans and the longer that the project's supporters stuck with that story, the less credible the message became. If you want to promote healing, why in the world would you knowingly insult the people with whom you want to reach an understanding? Befuddled, defenders of the project have abandoned that defense and charged forward with a new offensive, designed to play on all of the guilt and self-doubt that are such a large part of the modern American psyche. In short, it's all about "Islamophobia."
Daisy Khan, who together with her husband Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf has been pushing the project forward despite the fervent opposition, tried to turn the tables on critics of the mosque. "We are deeply concerned, because this is like a metastasized anti-Semitism," she said this week. "It's beyond Islamophobia. It's hate of Muslims." Similarly, writer Bobby Ghosh answered the question posed by a recent Time magazine headline "Does America have a Muslim problem?" decidedly in the affirmative, saying that "…it is plain that many of Park51's opponents are motivated by deep-seated Islamophobia." Obediently following the new marching orders, the ultra-liberals over at Media Matters for America worked themselves into lather over the issue over the last few days, declaring ad naseum that conservatives and the "right wing media" are stoking the flames of Islamophobia in America for no discernable reason.