Friday, June 25, 2010

Tennessee Know-Nothings

Remember Vijay Kumar? Of WTVF’s famous “Homegrown Jihad” expose? He’s the one running for Jim Cooper’s seat on an “anti-Sharia platform.”

He’s erected a few billboards around Nashville. Here’s one:

Kumar is a crank of the highest order and I’d say his chances against Jim Cooper are slim to none. Interestingly, another crank, Lou Ann Zelenik, is running for Bart Gordon’s seat. She, too, has made anti-Muslim sentiment a focal point of her campaign:
In a Thursday evening statement, 6th District candidate Lou Ann Zelenik said she stands with those who oppose building what she calls "an Islamic training center." She says the center is not part of a religious movement, but a political one "designed to fracture the moral and political foundation of Middle Tennessee."

"Until the American Muslim community find it in their hearts to separate themselves from their evil, radical counterparts, to condemn those who want to destroy our civilization and will fight against them, we are not obligated to open our society to any of them," Zelenik says in the statement.

Wow. Only in Tennessee -- and maybe South Carolina, Texas, and a few other Southern states -- could your intolerance be a campaign issue ... as a selling pont.

Frankly, I am surprised at this turn of events. I thought the Hispanic community would be the Republican punching bag this election; instead, they seem to have decided that Muslim hate is the issue that can rally their base. How convenient that they can all identify a common enemy to inspire fear and hatred in the hearts of their followers. Because what’s an election without a convenient punching bag?

It’s so weird to me. Am I the only one who remembers conservatives touting how wonderful it was that Nashville was selected as a polling site for ex-pat Iraqis, how this proved the war had been worth it? Remember all of those purple fingers?

I don’t get it. You’ll let these folks vote, but you won’t let them worship?