Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Transcript: 'Countdown' with Keith Olbermann (8-17-10)

Full Transcript here. Excerpt below:

Many colonists, like those who settled in Jamestown in Virginia, traveled in search of fortune, betting that the cultivation of cash crops, such as tobacco, would allow them to realize the promise in a promised land. But others, like those who landed at Plymouth Rock, hope for a different reward, sailing to the new world on the Mayflower to escape religious persecution.

Our fifth story: put aside the ginned up faux controversy surrounding the building of an Islamist community center somewhere near Ground Zero -- the non-news that Republicans want you to talk about instead of focusing upon unemployment, the Gulf oil disaster, health care.

The real actual controversy might be this: the threat to religious freedom, a threat already being faced by other Muslim Americans nationwide, and a freedom upon which this nation was founded. Those who oppose the Islamic community center near Ground Zero, being many of the same people who love to wrap themselves in the yellow parchment of our founding documents with little to no understanding of what those documents represent.

Muslim and interfaith leaders today are expressing concern that the question of religious freedom is not contained to Lower Manhattan, calling for the protection of community centers, of mosques, of other houses of worship, of Muslim Americans, and of other worshippers around the country, their fears not unfounded. Recent weeks and months witnessing an alarming rise in incidents.

Mosques now facing zoning challenges in Tennessee, in California, in Georgia, in Kentucky, in Wisconsin and in Illinois; standing room-only in a courthouse when a proposed facility in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, was discussed -- as well as only miles from Ground Zero, itself, in Midland Beach in Staten Island, and Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn.

Then there`s the unmasked hatred and violence. Last week, Christians protestors confronting worshippers outside a mosque in Bridgeport, Connecticut, before Friday evening prayer services during Ramadan just because. Screaming, among other things, "Jesus hates Muslims" and calling the children murderers.

In Jacksonville, in Florida in May, the pipe bombing of the mosque -- the FBI is investigating it as a possible domestic terrorist incident.

In the San Francisco Bay Area in California, Muslim man beaten in broad daylight by attackers who called him a terrorist.

And mother and son reported assaulted after a softball game in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Why? The Iraqi immigrant who moved her family here to escape violence tried to defend her adult son when he was called "raghead," "terrorist" and "camel jockey` by members of the opposing team. Also, the man`s jaw is broken, now wired shut. The police is saying the incident seemed to be trash talking that got out of hand.

The attackers in these cases are calling their victims terrorists. The attackers meanwhile claiming they, themselves, oppose violence, while they were assaulting others.

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