President Barack Obama sent his deputy national security adviser, Denis McDonough, on Sunday to a Washington-area mosque known for its cooperation with the FBI and its rejection of the al-Qaida brand of Islam.
"Being religious is never un-American. Being religious is quintessentially American," McDonough said. (Z: Is being religious what's in question here? really? And, while we're at it, my friend Mike just sent me THIS...!! What is going ON?)
The speech came just four days before the congressional hearing, which has already given rise to protests on grounds it is unfairly targeting Muslims. In New York's Times Square on Sunday, about 300 people gathered to speak out against the planned congressional hearing, criticizing it as xenophobic and saying that singling out Muslims, rather than extremists, is unfair and divides the nation. (Z: why would anybody single out non extremists except for help, which is exactly what King wants and one would think all Muslims would want)
Speaking to an interfaith forum of Muslims, Christians, Jews and other faiths, McDonough, the president's point-man on countering violent extremism, was clear: "We're all Americans." (Z: this counters violent extremism?)
The majority of the recent terror plots and attempts against the U.S. have involved people espousing a radical and violent view of Islam, making it difficult to ignore the role religion plays in this particular threat. But focusing too closely on Islam and the religious motives of these attempted terror attacks also threatens to alienate an entire community that has nothing to do with these violent beliefs.
New York Republican Peter King, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee that is holding the hearings, thinks the Muslim community can and should do more to help law enforcement thwart these attacks.
"I don't believe there is sufficient cooperation" by American Muslims with law enforcement, King said Sunday on CNN. "Certainly my dealings with the police in New York and FBI and others say they do not believe they get the same — they do not give the level of cooperation that they need." Z: THIS article goes on and ends with the following paragraphs: