17 August 2010

President supports new mosque; letting people tie their left shoelace first!

I'm all for letting a mosque or community center or 1001-Nights-themed titty-bar-and-flight-school be built wherever the hell someone owns a private chunk of land, "hallowed ground" or no. It might be tasteless or rude, but so what? I'm going to mind my own business and hope that when it comes time for me to do something unpopular everyone else will mind theirs.

Despite supporting this mosque business these headlines I spotted on the newspaper rack of the grocery this weekend ground my gears. They totally missed the point. One was from the NY Post and the other was the Daily News, but I can't remember which was which. In their typically understated 60 point type, their front pages read:

Prez: Build This Mosque!


Obama Blesses Mosque: Allah Right by Me

The sentiment behind those annoys me almost as much as the blowhards who want to get the project banned. The whole point of property rights is that you don't need anyone else's approval including the President's. Turning to authority to sanction something that's right and valid anyway also undermines the rule of law almost as much as the hullaballoo from Gingrich and Palin et al. "Private project goes forward after presidential approval" scares me just as much as "Private project canned after politician's disapproval."

It's nice that Obama supports letting this thing be built.  I much prefer it to the alternative.*  I prefer even more that it not matter what he thinks.  The entire point of this mosque kerfuffle is that it does not matter what you or I or anyone else including the vocal and powerful think should be done on that plot of land.

(* But I can't help but notice that he's been no great respecter of property rights before this, so it's not exactly a principled stand on his part, is it?)

We need to grow up and stop turning to Daddy-in-the-Oval-Office to weigh in on every issue of minor public interest.  What should some land owner be allowed to do with his property?  What should we do about the BCS and college football?  What should we do about steroids in baseball?  What should we eat for breakfast?

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