Mosque to be built two blocks from Ground Zero

First off, I have respect for the Islam faith and the Muslim community. I also realize that it was extremists that executed the attacks on the World Trade Center. However, does anyone else think that MAYBE it’s a bit insensitive to erect a mosque in the very shadow of Ground Zero and have the ribbon cutting on September 11th, 2011? I mean, of all places why did they choose THERE to build? Isn’t there a possibility of more lives being lost from anti-Islamic groups?

They aren’t really going to open then, are they? But on the other hand, I am sure Christians would be welcome to do the same in any Muslim country.

Depending on how you look at it, it could be a sign of the openness and tolerance of our society.

Would it be a problem for a Christian church to be erected a few blocks from where an abortion doctor had been killed?

I hear they are opening a German culture centre in Auschwitz.

Oh jeez, I can imagine all the right wing glurge emails sure to sprout as a result of this. I have no issue with the mosque, cutting the ribbon on 9/11 is over the top, in my opinion. That would be just asking the Reich Wing to get all in a tizzy.

That’s what I was thinking originally, that it was to be a symbol of openness and outreach. However, as I said in the original OP, what concerns me the most is the possibility of backlash and violence from anti-Islam groups.

The OP is completely misrepresenting the article he links to. The space isn’t designated as a mosque, first of all. It’s “overflow prayer space” for a mosque in Tribeca. It’s not having any kind of “ribbon-cutting ceremony” on Sept. 11 or any other time, according to the linked article, anyway. No ribbon-cutting ceremony is mentioned and the only mention of Sept. 11 is in reference to THE 9/11 in 2001.

The congregation is not an extremist congregation, and the cleric managing the whole thing is actually one who helped FBI agents gain entry into the NYC Muslim community after 9/11 in order to try to get information about the hijackers.

Total kneejerk going on in the OP.

Disclaimer: I am American and Muslim (tho not very religious).

I don’t think it is a problem and agree with John Mace. It seems to be two blocks away and not within sight of the WTC site.

Just as I would have no issue with a blatantly US/Christian institution opening two blocks away from the Hiroshima/Nagasaki bomb sites, I don’t think this is a big deal either.

Its not a mosque according to the article?

It depends on who you need to be sensitive to I guess. In my view you either commit to freedom of religion or you let the terrorists win. It would be an impressive symbolic act if it could succeed and a huge propaganda victory to extremists if they are driven out.

And anyone using it as an excuse to physically attack them was a risk regardless.


It’s certainly a concern, but I think it’s up to the folks who are doing this to assess the risk and act accordingly.

Well, there’s already a church about two blocks away. Why not?

Is that the fault of the congregation? Isn’t that the same thing as saying that DADT can’t be ended because gay soldiers will be beaten and murdered by their platoon-mates? Isn’t that like saying that African-Americans who try to buy houses in racist white neighborhoods are responsible for the grafitti and burning crosses that ensue?

Actually, it’s a community center but it will contain a mosque:

Not that this is going to matter to anyone who finds this upsetting, but a prayer space or “an Islamic center” is not the same thing as a mosque. If you say it’s a mosque, people will picture something like this. A building that says ‘Sufi center’ on it is not going to create the same impression as a mosque.

Fuck them. I thought one of the enduring messages from September 11th was that you can’t let extremists and lunatics dictate what you do with your life. The people who want to open this space are saying the right things, the message is terrific, and it sounds like they have a legal right to do this if they want to.

None of which means this is going to happen, because I can a big backlash to the plans that might make them choose to relocate. You can see Bloomberg is aware of that because he was keeping his distance in his comments. But I don’t have a problem with this. What’s the alternative? We cordon off a couple of blocks around the site as a ‘don’t mention Muslims’ zone?

Okay, that’s a different story on a different news site. If you wanted us to have THAT story to refer to, you should have linked it in the OP instead of the NYT story that doesn’t mention the mosque. I’m not even sure the two stories are talking about the same building, actually. The NYT story refers to the prayer center as a 5-story building. The CNN story refers to a 15-story building where the community center will be.

I agree with you on this. I SHOULD have put the CNN story in the OP. It seems that the two articles I referenced are a mite conflicting.

So what?

What better way to rub the noses of the Islamo-fascists in the fact that we are the USA, not Saudi Arabia?

We have freedom of religion in this country. The terrorists who attacked us on 9/11 and continue to do so don’t like that. This will demonstrate that they failed to affect our freedoms.



I think this is a testament to the magnificence of New Yorkand the character of that city. I can’t think of a more awesome statement of what New York is all about. It’s a move that’s simultaneously defiant, arrogant, multicultural AND American. It’s magnificent. My admiration of New York and the United States of America just went up ten percent, and I already loved NYC.

The message this sends is “Fuck you, Osama. Allah be praised.” You can’t get more New York City than that.

Not only should they cut the ribbon on 9/11, they should get Rudy Giuliani to do it while wearing a Yankees cap and an “I (Heart) New York” button. Then everyone should sing the Star-Spangled Banner in Arabic. If NYC of all places can’t give the world the finger and say “We’re a city of the world and anyone who doesn’t like it can go to hell” then we’re all doomed.

To be fair, the CNN story is typically CNN-Online horrible. It’s not even so much a story as it is an extended caption, but, again, that’s CNN-Online. It’s apparently far too much to ask them to actually write a print story when they can just slap up Flash video instead (and fuck the people who can’t watch video at work or because of their computer’s age/condition/video card) and write a double-tweet summary.

What would be an appropriate distance? 3 blocks? 6 blocks? Not on Manhattan Island? Who gets to decide? As anything Islam-related out of bounds? Or just mosques? What about a bookstore focused on Islamic literature?

This is just a trumped up article going for the emotional reaction rather than anything substantive.