Or CARF, as its known in the halls of Congress.
It seems this controversy over Rep.-elect Keith Ellison (D-MN), the first ever Muslim in Congress, and his desire to take the oath of office (not the actual oath, by the way, more on this in a minute) by placing his hand on the Koran won’t die. This is one of those controversies where you just want to say, “Oh, people, please, grow up.”
The latest to spin the Wheel of Nonsense is Rep. Virgil Goode (R-VA), who has a form letter going out to constituents who supposedly have been contacting him with “a flood of e-mails” about this issue. You can read the entire letter at Glenn Greenwald’s blog, but here is a snip. Try to follow this winding trail, if you can:
The Muslim Representative from Minnesota was elected by the voters of that district and if American citizens don’t wake up and adopt the Virgil Goode position on immigration there will likely be many more Muslims elected to office and demanding the use of the Koran.
We need to stop illegal immigration totally and reduce legal immigration and end the diversity visas policy pushed hard by President Clinton and allowing many persons from the Middle East to come to this country.
Did you follow that? The Rep. went from the wishes of the people of Ellison’s district to immigration to Muslims being elected to office back to illegal immigration to President Clinton to the Middle East.
And the best part is that Ellison is African-American, or so I gather by watching him on television.
Greenwald had this to say:
I was particularly moved by the way Rep. Goode stood up to the inquiring, treasonous “Muslim student.” That was very brave, powerful and resolute of Rep. Goode to stand his ground. Maybe he is the Churchill we’ve all been hungrily craving.
Meanwhile, over at the Lede at the New York Times, it is pointed out that the ceremony in question is not official. It is merely a photo-op, and the actual oath is taken without holy books, which prompted a Lutheran pastor from New Jersey to ask this:
The reality is that pictures of Congressional representatives where they are placing their hand on the Bible while raising their other hands is just for publicity. It is a photo-op… The Bible is a prop in the pictures.
Why aren’t people upset that God’s Word is being used as a prop – how many of those taking those photo-op pictures with their hands on the Bible actually live their public lives according to it?
Love those Lutherans! Martin Luther said something that is appropriate here. As a Christian, Luther said, “I’d rather be ruled by a competent Turk than an incompetent Christian.”
The sudden re-emergence of this controversy is a reminder of last month’s dust-up when Glenn Beck of CNN asked Ellison to convince him that he’s not working with our enemies, which prompted a classic response from Jon Stewart (Warning: TV-M):
Andy in the HBG