Opinion/Editorial
CAPTAIN MIDNIGHT

Throughout modern, and even not so modern, times many people have wondered and scratched their heads about the acceptability of heroes on television and cinema wearing masks. Masks, except for very occasional celebrations, like the Mardi Gras in New Orleans or costume required Halloween parties, are not considered acceptable wear. In fact, they are usually seen as being worn by people who are trying to evade or break the law, instead of enforcing or going along with it. From Captain America to Batman, and so many other “heroes” of our culture that we are taught to revere (with a bit of imaginative tongue in cheek), all are represented by characters that wear masks. This is a strange phenomenon when considering the current hysteria about people who are practitioners of a belief system called Islam. To be a Muslim in America today is to be a bit suspect by everyone else who is not a Muslim. Many traditional women of that faith, some two million strong in the U.S. alone, frequently wear hijabs, which are opaque veils which mask their face. They aren’t called masks, but the intention to hide facial features is there, just like with the super heroes so many admire.

What is going to happen if this current trend of discriminating against Muslims (no matter their demonstrated behavior, or what it says about freedom of religion in the U.S. Constitution) continues, or even intensifies? There are two billion people worldwide who ascribe to the Muslim religion. That religion is as broken up as the Christian religion is. There are about three billion Christians on the planet. If the current divisions between the Muslim faith and Christianity escalate, and open physical confrontation prevails as it did back during the Crusades, then what is the likely result? Both ends of the spectrum are represented in each belief system. There are right wing, whacko, splinter groups in both. There are left wing, liberal, socialists in both. For current political purposes, however, the Executive Officer in the White House promotes the view that both religions are fundamentally committed to one single belief system, each, and those two belief systems are violently opposed to the existence of the other. That there is no intrinsic truth to that view, seems not to matter.

If these two religions were to go to war, with the peoples of every geographical region populating them, then the potential carnage would boggle the mind of any person capable of doing simple mathematics.   The rest of the billions of people on the planet, those believing in Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism and more are left to simply go their own way, while attempting to stay out of the potentially greatest world war anyone could ever consider.

This new possible war, that could theoretically lead to religious genocide, has been brought back from the days of the Crusades by one single event. The 9/11 catastrophe back in 2001. The alleged perpetrators were found to be of the Muslim religion. If they really crashed those planes into those towers, killing almost three thousand Americans, then the fact that these young men came from Saudi Arabia and were extremist Muslim elements of a virulently violent sect, then logic would dictate that the focus of America’s response would be to root the surviving members out, and punish them for this act. That didn’t happen. Not even close. Instead, a country not involved in the attacks, and controlled by a Christian leader, was attacked. Then another country was attacked. Both of these countries were populated by Muslims who had little or nothing to do with 9/11, and today everyone pretty much admits that. The Muslim enemies were first called Al Qaeda, and then when those people seemed to whither away, the Taliban became the enemy, only to be replaced by another band called ISIS. ISIS has stuck for a couple of year, but the retaliatory response of the U.S., is evolving. It’s evolving into going after what is considered the ‘root’ cause. And the current administration has declared that to be the Muslim religion itself.

Follow the money. What possible financial benefit could accrue to any person or entity from a massive, entangled and never-ending war? Has everyone forgotten the Cold War? Has everyone forgotten how America came out of the massive, near back-breaking spending needed to build the WWII war machine, to only ten years later actually be spending more each year on defensive military forces than during that war? It happened. And then the Cold War ended. And that resulted in a terrible panic that ran straight through the military industrial complex. It took them from the wall going down in Germany, until 9/11 to get their act together. But get it together they did. Spending for ‘defensive’ military forces in the U.S. goes up every year, no matter what is happening in the world. In 2017 it will be the largest budget of all time, no matter how anyone may adjust the numbers for time and inflation. 678 billion dollars! More than all other nations on earth…put together! But now the current ‘wars’ are wearing thin. It’s hard to justify spending that kind of money when the opposition is a bunch of poorly garbed cave dwellers coming from countries that have a combined national product smaller than the state of California.

Voila! The war on the Muslim religion is born. Captain Midnight will go forth in his mask to fight those Muslim women in their masks. And he’s going to win. He won’t have super powers. He will have the only power.   And the world will descend into a hell of fear, loathing and utter despair, except for a very, very few. And you know who those few are.

Don’t buy it. The framers of the Constitution knew, and they weren’t buying. Conservatives, liberals, progressives, libertarians, Green Party, Tea Party and even anarchists must turn their heads back and re-absorb the wisdom of the founding fathers. Freedom of religion isn’t there to endorse a philosophy of life. It is there to assure that there is life. Be an American. Believe in what the forefathers saw and wrote of, and then believe in yourself, not charlatans who’ve built their entire plush lives, and enormous wealth, on presenting and portraying alternate facts. The U.S. Constitution is wonderful, real and it’s free, having been bought and paid for by the blood of so many American and allied warriors. Be one with the memory of those courageous men and women.
~James Strauss

 

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