Buencamino does political affairs analysis for Action for Economic
Reforms. This piece was published in the newspaper Today, 15
October 2004, page 11.
In recent weeks, the proposal to build a place for Muslims to worship
in Greenhills has developed into an issue of property and community
rights. It has taken on dangerous and reprehensible overtones of
religious intolerance and cultural insensitivity.-MANUEL QUEZON III
Bigotry is what someone who doesn’t have Mr. Quezon’s tact would call
it. But a tactless person would compare those bigots to the Ku Klux
Klan, except that these natives are neither Protestant nor white.
Still, the temptation to compare them is powerful, because they do
share certain attitudes.
Cliff Carter of the Night Hawks of the Klan declared, “Our country was
founded by a white Protestant nation, and we intend to maintain it as
such! Any attempt to
influence its affairs by inferior racial minorities or persons owing
allegiance to foreign prelates or potentates will not be tolerated!”
Similarly, the knight klavaliers of Greenhills asked, “Why take the
risk of attracting Moro jihadis, gangsters, or violent types into our
midst when the Muslims doing business in Greenhills are mostly
non-residents and transients? This is not an anti-Muslim attitude.
We’re simply defending our homes from probable threat.”
And their Grand Wizard wrote, “Soon the Basilan Gang from Maluso—the
homeland of the Abu Sayyaf (near my sister’s former plantation)—will be
there, too, to… well, pray of course. Weren’t those Abu Sayyaf
the same deeply religious fellows who blew up the Super Ferry, it’s now
been revealed?” The Grand Wizard and his Klavaliers know Muslims, or
moros as he calls them.
Their fears mirror the learned comments of eminent Christian
evangelicals like Rev. Jerry Falwell who said, “I think Mohammed was a
terrorist. I read enough of the history of his life, written by both
Muslims and non-Muslims, that he was a violent man, a man of war,” and
Rev Pat Robertson, “This man (Muhammad) was an absolute wild-eyed
fanatic. He was a robber and a brigand… this man [Muhammad] was a
killer. And to think that this is a peaceful religion is fraudulent,”
and Rev. Franklin Graham, the son of Rev. Billy Graham, “The God of
Islam is not the same God. He’s not the Son of God of the Christian or
Judeo-Christian faith. It’s a different God, and I believe it [Islam]
is a very evil and wicked religion.” Rev. Jerry Vine called Mohammed “a
demon possessed pedophile who had twelve wives.”
Not only from evangelicals can the brown Klansmen draw sustenance.
There’s also US Attorney General John Ashcroft who said, “Islam is a
religion in which God requires you to send your son to die for him.
Christianity is a faith in which God sent his Son to die for you.”
In 1921, W.A. White, a respectable newspaper publisher wrote, “To make
a case against a birthplace, a religion, or a race is wickedly
un-American and cowardly. The whole trouble with the Ku Klux Klan is
that it is based upon such deep foolishness that it is bound to be a
menace to good government in any community.” He described them
as, “a self-constituted body of moral idiots.”
Manuel Quezon III is a man of tact and diplomacy. He left it to his
readers to figure out exactly what he thought of the Grand Wizard and
his Klavaliers. I agree with Mr.Quezon’s views but not so
Muslims pray facing Mecca, their Holy City. When they touch their
foreheads to the ground, their butts face in the direction of the Grand
Too bad they only pray five times a day.