Aug 18, 2010
There is no reason the Islamic community center in lower Manhattan should not be built
The things the rightwing chooses to make an issue over never ceases to amaze me, as does why people, especially Democrats, listen to them.
One such non-issue is the plan to build an Islamic community center in lower Manhattan. It has been characterized by the right as building an Islamic Mosque at the site of the so-called Ground Zero at the site of the former World Trade Center where the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 took place, when the facts are it is not a Mosque and its three blocks from ground zero.
Even if it were a Mosque being built right over the top of ground zero, so what? This country was founded on religious freedom. Now, some rightwing bigots, like Steve Emerson, have made a career bashing one of the world's’ great religions, but this is just ridiculous.
The reaction is just typical of people like Emerson who promote racial profiling of men of Middle Eastern descent and make the false claim that all Muslim groups are terrorist front groups. The 9/11 terrorists were extremists and not representative of the Muslim religion.
Every religion has extremists that are way out of the mainstream. Christians do not embrace the idiots at the Westboro Baptist Church who claim God hates America because we offer, almost, equal rights to gays. Just because these idiots show up at the funerals of soldiers and sailors killed in Iraq and Afghanistan with signs that say “God hates fags” does that mean all Christens feel the same way or support that action?
To me, building a Mosque or a Muslim community center there sends a clear message to the world and the Muslim extremists that the United States is the greatest and most open and free country in the world, and no matter how hard you try, we will never give up an ounce of our freedom or civil liberties in the face of cowardly terrorism. If it doesn’t get built because of hate, prejudice and intolerance, then the terrorists on 9/11 accomplished their mission.
Clearly, if the community center meets local zoning laws and is approved by the local planning commission it should be built, and there is absolutely no reason it should not be built.