Saturday, October 2, 2010

"Tax Profs for the Ground Zero Mosque"

Tax geek that I am, I subscribe to and follow avidly Professor Paul Caron’s "Tax Prof Blog." Last month, Professor Caron posted an item he entitled “Tax Profs for the Ground Zero Mosque.” This got my attention because frankly we tax folk aren’t exactly known for taking on the big issues facing society—unless it is a slow news day and tax cuts are getting a lot of press.

Upon closer inspection, this item wasn’t really about tax profs weighing in on the “ground zero mosque” debate, but was instead a group of non-tax law professors who were speaking out in a pragmatic way against religious intolerance and bigotry.

Specifically, a group of law professors was asking other law professors to follow the lead of the Jewish Community Center of Manhattan to donate some small amount of money to the Park 51 Islamic Center project. I was very touched at the inter-faith nature of this effort. The organizing professors stated “We suggest pledges between $18 and $360. That is a tribute to the Jewish tradition of giving in multiples of 18, the number corresponding to the Hebrew word ‘life.’”

Amidst all the vicious, intolerant things that have been said about this proposed Islamic Center and the ugly anti-Muslim tone that we’ve been hearing recently, I found this effort to be so refreshing. It made me very proud to be a member of the legal academy.

More information about this project is available at the link below.

Deuteronomy 16:17

Each of you must bring a gift in proportion to the way the LORD your God has blessed you.

Isaiah 19:24-25 (The Message)

On that Day, Israel will take its place alongside Egypt and Assyria, sharing the blessing from the center. God-of-the-Angel-Armies, who blessed Israel, will generously bless them all: "Blessed be Egypt, my people!...Blessed be Assyria, work of my hands!...Blessed be Israel, my heritage!"

John 16:13

But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what
is yet to come.

1 comment:

  1. I found this to be very exciting! Not only is it an admirable show of charity and tolerance, it is encouraging a positive view of the Middle East crisis. I have many liberal friends who have a very negative bias towards Israel and the acts they view as atrocities against Muslims, much like my conservative friends have against the Middle East and Muslims in general. I have many a time tried to defend Israel as a nation, and tried to explain to people that the overreaching religion/political nature of a nation can many times be manipulated by a few nasty individuals. I hope this current gift to the mosque will show people that most Jews and Muslims do not want to eradicate each other off face of the earth, but are also hoping for a peaceful and tolerant life.