JIM CREES: I just won't be afraid

And so it begins ... again.

With the ISIS terror attacks on public places in Paris still fresh in mind, folks seem to need to come up with some response ... any response.

The whole thing is mildly reminiscent of the period immediately following the events of Sept. 11, 2001, when people were terrified of anything that moved.

Courthouses and public buildings in the hinterlands of the United States were shut down because of potential anthrax threats ... which turned out to be powdered sugar drifting off doughnuts!

And the actual anthrax incidents which did take place were domestic, not of foreign origin.

People were then, and are today, afraid of their own shadows. There were and are bogeymen under every bed and around every corner.

We need to do something. WE GOTTA DO SOMETHING!!!

So ... the response ... is to desecrate a copy of the Quran and vandalize a mosque.

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm ...

That’ll show them!

In Pflugerville, Texas, somebody ripped up a copy of the Quran and defecated on its pages before leaving it on the front steps if a local mosque.

Boy. That really proved a point.

Following the Paris terrorism, mosques in Florida reported receiving threatening phone calls.

And politicians simply had to jump on the bandwagon.

Presidential candidate Donald Trump offered a spectacular response to the Paris attacks suggesting in order to deal with some perceived threat, the government of the United States should simply place the First Amendment in abeyance — or chuck it out the window altogether.

When asked if the Trump administration would deal with a perceived Muslim threat by shuttering mosques around the country, the Donald responded saying, “I would hate to do it but it would be something that you’re going to have strongly consider because some of the ideas, some of the hatred—the absolute hatred—is coming from these areas.”

The “hatred”? The “absolute hatred”?

What about the continuing hatred emanating out of the Westboro Baptist Church? Westboro is a place well known for its hate-filled rhetoric, it virulent anti-gay theology, its rejoicing at “God’s punishment of America” through the deaths of soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, its anti-Semitism, and its general hate of everyone and everything.

Would Trump shut them down?

Why does the hate expressed in terror attacks in Paris suddenly echo out of a mosque in Florida? The hate expressed by the people of the Faithful Word Baptist Church who believe gay people in this country should be executed in public more accurately reflects the message of ISIS than do sermons in most mosques around the world.

But they wouldn’t be shut down by Trump and others of his ilk.

If we’re talking about closing down centers of religious hate, why not shutter the doors of the Kingdom Identity Ministry — “... an outreach ministry to God’s chosen race — true Israel, the White, European peoples” advocating racism, anti-Semitism and the execution of homosexuals. Why not them?

‘Cause “them” to far too many people is “us.” That’s why.

Trump’s silliness, however, is so goofy he worried even the less tolerant amongst our leaders.

Republican Congressman Peter King, who is often tagged as being an anti-Muslim bigot and a leader of the immigration fear-mongering cabal said about Trump’s suggestion, “I have been critical of people in the Muslim community, but the fact is you can’t be shutting down mosques …We do have freedom of religion.”

Indeed.

“Donald Trump’s apparent willingness to close down American mosques that he deems ‘extreme’ is totally incompatible with the Constitution and our nation’s cherished principle of religious freedom,” said Robert McCaw, a spokesperson for the Council of American-Islamic Relations.

So ... ISIS carries out a terror attack in Paris, and the knee-jerk response in Texas, Florida, and elsewhere around the States is to vandalize, threaten and desecrate Muslim houses of worship.

Yowzah.

We are in great shape.

And at an Applebee’s restaurant in Minnesota recently, a Muslim woman -— a LEGAL immigrant from Somalia — angered a neighboring diner by speaking in Swahili with her own family.

“When you’re in America you should speak English,” the REAL American woman exclaimed before smashing a beer mug across the “offensive” woman’s face.

Asma Jama needed 17 stitches to sew up the damage.

And all because we are afraid of ... what?

Well, folks. You can live in fear all you want. Fear of “them.” Fear of Sharia. Fear of their color. Fear of their language. Fear of their religion. Fear of their difference. Fear of the head covering. Fear of ... whatever.

Me? I simply refuse to be afraid.

I am sad because of what happened in Paris, but I’m not afraid.

Frankly, I’m more afraid of homegrown kooks than I am of imported danger.