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A proposed Muslim community center near 9/11's "ground zero"

Late 2010-JUL: Amazon forum begins.

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2010-JUL-22: Amazon.com History Community forum about the mosque near ground zero:

"Chris H" started a history forum on the Amazon.com website with the topic: "What an Englishman Thinks of Building a Muslim Mosque at Ground Zero." 1 His initial posting was a copy of an article by El Marco on the "RevoltAgainstMarxism" website. The article is titled: "Stop the Mosque at Ground Zero, Part II." 2 The article was extremely critical of the community center that is planned to be built six blocks from ground zero. He also complained that the news media censored the demonstration on 2010-JUN-06. He asked the question "Where was Fox News?" He stated that:

"Not one major network sent a satellite truck or camera crew to this event, not even Fox News. Without bloggers this newsworthy event would have remained unknown to the public and history."

Actually, the event was well covered by Israel National News, CNN, and probably by other news sources. 3 A Google search of cnn "ground zero" mosque demonstration 300 returned about 213,000 hits on 2010-AUG-01.

The first half dozen responses were mostly in favor of the community center:

  • Brian Curtis:
    "Thank him for his opinion, but he does NOT speak for every American that you know. He certainly doesn't speak for me."
  • Sutekh:
    I'm curious as a Brit, if he opposes all the Catholic Churches near areas where IRA bombs went off. Mustn't have any Irish pubs in those areas either right?
  • Youssif:
    "The anti-Muslim movement is a curious blend of old-fashioned racism, naive nativism, fear, and the brute, thuggish rage that infects a diseased minority in every generation and finds its scapegoat in every culture. Because it's irrational to its core, it shuns reasoned discussion, which it dismisses as weakness or 'appeasement'. Instead, it relies on theatre and crude sloganeering (Not All Terrorists Are Muslim, But All Muslims Are Terrorists!!) to make its 'points'. ..."
    "The 'Mega Mosque' is not a "Mosque" - mega, maxi, or mini. It's a 13-story community center that will include a prayer room, a performing art center, a gym, swimming pool and other public spaces. It will be open to everyone."

    "The community centre will not be situated at Ground Zero. It's being built on the site of an old factory two blocks away. Organizers of the demonstration wisely opted to stage their drama at a more iconic location, rather than at the site itself. Better rage generation, you see."

    "So to summarize - a community centre open to the public and supported by the City and the Borough is being built blocks away from Ground Zero."
  • ChimChim:
  • "So, let's fight religious intolerance with ... religious intolerance? It's nice that we can understand each other on such a base level."
  • L. King:

    "What does building something in Mecca or anyplace else have to do with the project in NYC? We, the USA, either have standards we live up to or we don't, nothing to do with any other country. ..."

    "I wouldn't have an objection to a mosque within a rebuilt WTC either. The only thing I'd object to is a mosque replacing the site. Come to think of it I'd also object to building a cineplex there too. 9/11 was an American tragedy and the rebuilding of the site requires dignity. What happens two blocks away is not that important."

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Most of the rest of the initial postings sought equal treatment for Muslims in America, and Christians in predominately Muslim countries:

  • L. King:
    I personally have no problems with this project.

    Now how about a Church in Mecca? There looks like a couple of free lots on Umm Al Qura that would do. Would you think there'd be an objection to a Buddhist monastery? Or is it still the rule that there can be only one religion in Arabia?

    How about an Israeli Embassy?
  • J. Schwarz:

    "I normally would have no objections to the mosque if most of the Arab states would allow a synagogue or church to be built on 'Muslim' land, however the Muslims refuse to allow any other religion to build on their 'property'. Muslims want the western nations to be understanding and yet when it comes to them they are the most bigoted countries in the world. Really, no Jews are even allowed to set foot in many Muslim countries, why is that? I am sure many Muslims feel it is their right to build in the west but are silent when other religions request the same right. I would also like to know where the money to build all these mosques is coming from, because if it's from the Saudis, the most repressive and bigoted country in the ME, then why should we allow them to build their mosques anywhere in the US? We don't need the Wahhabis mindset here."

However, to repeat what has been said so many times, what is proposed is a community center with a prayer room, not a mosque. So an accurate comparison would not be a mosque in America vs. a church in Saudi Arabia. It would be two religiously-based community centers open to persons of all faiths in both countries. Since the government of Saudi Arabia does not allow its citizens access to this website, ReligiousTolerance.org, it is most unlikely that they would allow construction in their country of a community center for persons of all faiths.

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References used:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

  1. Chris H, "What an Englishman Thinks of Building a Muslim Mosque at Ground Zero," Amazon.com history community forum, 2010-JUL-22, at: http://www.amazon.com/
  2. El Marco, "Where was Fox News? Censored protest at ground zero. Stop the mosque at Ground Zero. Part II.," RevoldAgainstMarxism.com.2010-JUN-16, at: http://revoltagainstmarxism.com/
  3. Fern Sidman, "Demonstrators say 'No' to mosque at ground zero," Israel National News, 2010-JUN-07, at: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/
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Copyright © 2010 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Original posting: 2010-JUL-27
Latest update: 2010-AUG-25
Author: B.A. Robinson

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