Orlando Airport Spends $250,000 on Muslim Prayer Room

It’s amazing how committed Americans are to avoiding perceived bigotry. This is a country that elected a half-Muslim president with the name “Hussein” a mere seven years after 9/11. A country that is taking in Syrian refugees from the same area of the world where an enormous terrorist network is intent on destroying everything we stand for. A country that only registered minimal indignity when a mosque was built in the shadow of the new World Trade Center. To forgive is divine, but really?

The latest overcorrection comes from Orlando International Airport, where officials are set to spend a quarter of a million dollars on a “Reflection Room” for Muslim travelers. The decision comes as Emirates Airlines has announced it will fly non-stop from the airport to Dubai.

“These rooms provide travelers an opportunity to pray in their own way and have peace before they take a long flight,” said Muhammad Musri, president of the Islamic Society of Central Florida.

“Orlando is truly becoming a global community,” said OIA director Phil Brown, “and we want to be able to accommodate and provide high-quality amenities for all our passengers.”

“Allah Akbar,” said the terrorists who killed 3,000 people on a sunny September day not long ago.

All right, so it’s not fair to paint everyone with the same brush. Not every Muslim is a terrorist. America is the land of free religion and all that. We must be open-minded. Welcoming. Tolerant. Fine, fine.

It’s just funny, that’s all. We preach to kids that violence is never the answer. Pundits get on TV and talk about how unruly protesters are hurting the Black Lives Matter cause. But aren’t we just fooling ourselves? Would OIA be building a Muslim prayer room if 9/11 had never happened? Would the news stations be covering Ferguson this week if the anniversary protests had been calm and peaceful? It feels like, all in all, the old maxim holds true: bad publicity is better than no publicity. We reward violence with concessions, and then we pretend that one had nothing to do with the other.

Islamic leaders claim it’s hard to be a Muslim in America. But the truth is that Islam has never been so protected as it is in 2015. The more closely associated this religion becomes with the worst human atrocities in history, the more we seem to embrace it. The more vigorously we defend the “moderate Muslims.” Moderates who, curiously enough, don’t seem nearly as opposed to terrorism as their defenders claim they are.

So go ahead and build your little Muslim chapel, Orlando. You’re part of an exciting trend in America: rewarding bad behavior. Surely there’s no way that could backfire.

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