Mary Grabar

Funny, how liberals rush to the support of the devout—as long as they’re not Christian or Jewish.

That was the response when six imams were led away recently after displaying suspicious activity at the Minneapolis-St. Paul airport, activity which included praying loudly, and twice at sundown--at the gate and on the plane--against Muslim custom. The Associated Press reported on December 1 that such “ugly incidents” prompt “spontaneous expressions of support. Such as the e-mail a Minneapolis woman sent to CAIR after the imams were taken off their flight.” In the e-mail the woman offered a ride to two or three of the imams temporarily stranded at the airport: “My car is small, but at least some of our hearts in this land of the free are large.”

I can assure you that there are many Christians praying at airports. We, however, don’t make a display of it in order to draw false attention to our persecuted status. The imams, some of whom have been linked to terrorist organizations, however, it turns out were doing even more than that. It now appears that the praying and other suspicious activity--such as invoking “bin Laden,” and condemning America in Arabic, according to the police report--may have been a dry-run; some believe that it was a deliberate test of Americans’ “openness.”  (via

Christianity espouses a personal connection to God, so the Christian can pray at any time, anywhere. For some reason, I find myself praying when I’m before the wheel of my car. Several years ago, my son and I miraculously escaped serious injuries after being rear-ended by a large truck. We bounced off the guard rail, spun around 360 degrees, and knocked two other cars into the median. My Honda Civic was totaled, but the most severe injuries anyone suffered were whiplash.

Since that day, I am more aware than ever of the dangers of driving—to the point of being teased by some of my friends for being a slow, cautious driver.

Traveling away from the comfort zone of home is an activity that naturally encourages us to reflect on our vulnerability. This reflex, of course, has been compounded, especially with air travel, since 9/11.

The six imams attempted to exploit our Western culture’s practices of peaceful tolerance. This principle of tolerance issues forth from the Christian notion of separation of church and state, or rendering unto Caesar what is Caesar’s.

Mary Grabar

Mary Grabar earned her Ph.D. in English from the University of Georgia and teaches in Atlanta. She is organizing the Resistance to the Re-Education of America at Her writing can be found at