by Patrick Appel
The effect of this [Park 51] nonsense, ultimately, is to discourage people from trying to educate Americans about Arabic language and civilisation, or from setting up interfaith dialogues between Islam and other American religions. Those ought to be near the top of anyone's list of worthy, non-controversial projects.It's not just Islam-related projects that get hurt. USAID offices abroad shy away from organisations that work with prostitutes or drug addicts; some part of their programme might turn out to offer birth-control advice or clean needles, and the next thing you know some congressman accuses you of encouraging prostitution or drug addiction and you're out of a job.
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