The building which is poised to house the Cordoba Initiative Mosque and Cultural Center in Manhattan. (PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)
FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
Sometimes no answer can be an answer. When asked if a portion of the $100 million needed to build the mosque and Islamic community center near Ground Zero might come from either Saudi Arabia or Iran, the developers refused to comment.
This only adds to the already heated controversy surrounding this project. Remember 15 of the 19 hijackers responsible for deaths of nearly 3,000 people and the destruction of the World Trade Center on September 11 came from Saudi Arabia. And the U.S. considers Iran a sponsor of terrorism.
Nonetheless - New York Governor David Paterson tells CNN he's still working on finding a compromise site for the mosque and Islamic center away from Ground Zero.
The developer, Sharif el-Gamal, has said the proximity of the planned mosque and center is not an issue.
If the people behind this project are sincere about community relations, you'd think they would do something about improving community relations - and talk to the governor about a compromise.
This is not about freedom of religion - no one is suggesting Muslims can't practice their religion. This is about insensitivity to what happened on September 11 and an affront to this city and country. The murders of 3,000 people were committed by muslim extremists.
That's the reason for the outcry from families of victims, rescue workers, and New Yorkers in general - 2/3 of them are opposed. It's simply unrealistic to think you can build a muslim house of worship two blocks from where this awful thing happened and not get a negative reaction. But then I think the developers probably know that.
Here’s my question to you: What's the real reason that the Muslim community doesn't want to relocate the mosque and Islamic community center planned near Ground Zero?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
S. in Florida writes:
Because it's simply wrong for them to give in to the mindless mass hysteria that's being whipped up around this. What we're seeing is basically the "swift-boating" of a major worldwide religion. They didn't start this and as a life-long Christian, I stand with them in refusing to bow to this idiotic religious persecution. If these bonehead nay-sayers aren't careful, they could easily start another World War. Al Qaeda can retire. Their work is done if this mosque isn't built.
The reason I believe that they do not want to move the mosque is totally religious. They want to show off what they have done, and where they have conquered. This is a bragging site, not a healing site. If they truly want to help with the healing then show compassion for the victims of 9/11 and move it to a location further away.
Maybe because they believe in freedom of religion and are not going to allow themselves to be bullied. This phony "controversy" is just an attempt to further demonize an unpopular minority for political gain by the ultra-right wing of American politics. The same thing happened to the Jews in Germany in the 1930s.
I thought it was very obvious why the Muslim community does not want to build their Mosque and Islamic "community center" in a different location than Ground Zero. Would it have made sense to "relocate" the flag placed on Mt. Suribachi, Iwo Jima in 1945?
Nazis were Christian and there's a church less than a mile from Auschwitz! It isn't about sensitivity, it's about bigotry. The proximity to Ground Zero is simply a red herring. If we do shut this down, they, the proverbial "they" win by getting us to compromise the very ideals that make this nation great.
Kenny in Virginia writes:
I work next to a company that is Muslim-owned. The employees' attitudes regarding Islam and America range from ultra-pacifist to ultra-heated; however, to a man, they all think that America is discriminating against them over the mosque. Clearly, the opinions are strong each way. You can extract what you want from it but there's no denying that Islam is a very divisive subject these days.
If this is about sensitivity then no Christian Church should be anywhere near where Eric Roudolph, a radical Christian, set his bomb off in Atlanta during the Olympics 1994.
It's funny to me that Muslims pray daily 80 feet from where the plane crashed at the Pentagon and no one is batting an eye at that.
This is nothing but political pandering during an election year. It's pathetic and America should be better than that.
"15 of the 19 hijackers... came from Saudi Arabia"
So does a good portion of the gasoline for our vehicles. Should we stop driving around Lower Manhattan since it is Muslim oil?
C'mon Jack. There was no issue until some xenophobes on the far right decided to make it one.
The real reason is freedom of religion. You conveniently forget that many Muslims were victims of the 9/11 attack. You are insulting their memory. The only reason for opposing an Islamic Communityy Center two blocks from ground zero is that you are calling all Muslims terrorists.
Hello Mr. Cafferty. I am in Washington, DC.
Whether the reason Muslims want the mosque near Ground Zero out of respect to the 9/11 victims, or out of contempt for the 9/11 victims is largely irrelevant.
The real question is, do they have a constitutional right to build the mosque there at all?
The answer, undoubtedly, is yes. All other discussion in regards to the Muslims' motivations and ulterior motives is moot.
Because they DONT HAVE TO, Jack! If the Muslim community members live in the area of ground zero and want a place to worship logically near where they live, then it is there RIGHT. As AMERICANS. Mainstream Muslims did not attack the world trade center – extremists did. You can't hold 1.57 billion Muslims at fault for the extremely small percentage of Muslim extremists that exist and perpetuate terrorist acts.
It's a double-edged sword for the people of the US. If we don't let a mosque/cultural center be built on the grounds, then all we say about freedom of religion and an all-embracing culture is hypocritical. If we do let it happen, then we're a society that lets our enemies in through the front door. Either way the publicity casts us in a bad light to the rest of the "non-enlightened" world.
Why didn't we think of that before? Because this is rapidly becoming a non-issue. There are more pressing issues than what really comes down to "not in my neighborhood" or whatever symbolism this debacle of zoning nonsense has become. I no longer even have an opinion about it, really.
I'm not convinced that the developers have any evil intentions for building this center at this location. Rather, I believe that they've simply succumbed to that All-American malady.....being the center of attention and the belief that any publicity is good publicity.
Jim – Boston, MA
yeah, but cmon, think of all the idiotic things christians have done, like every idiot/criminal/killer in america is a christian...nobody would ever say you cant have a christian church near anyplace there are women, even though christians have killed abortion doctors, which therefore put women in fear of getting a perfectly legal and constitutional procedure....the fact that this would not happen to christians but would happen to muslims is in fact limitation on freedom of religion
If the builders of the proposed Islamic center near Ground Zero are financing the $100 million facility with money from either Saudi Wahhabist or Iranian interests, the reason is clear. These same people who believe that a terrorist attack on America is some kind of a victory against us also believe that a mosque on that site is also a victory. The same reason Americans have chosen to rebuild Ground Zero bigger and better than before the attacks of 9/11 is the same reason Americans should not allow a mosque on a site that was part of the attack. The building currently on the site was severely damaged by landing gear from one of the airplanes that struck the twin towers and was sold at the highly distressed price of about $4 million. A mosque even one block away from this building would not constitute a perceived victory for the type of people who destroyed the twin towers and a piece of the Pentagon. We Americans should not allow terrorists the perception that they are in ANY WAY victorious, and to me, at least, psychology is part of the war on terror.
From Texas – At this point, move the center. People will keep arguing forever about sacred ground and religious harmony and tolerance. America is supposed to be about compromise solutions that everyone can live with – and it's clear some people (who haven't even been to lower Manhattan) won't let it go. Sick of hearing about it anyway!
The real reason the developers do not want to leave is publicity. I believe that, in the end, the Mosque will be developed elsewhere. But, for now, they have the some pretty good leverage to get the govenment to grant them a much nicer alternative dwelling. The longer they hold on to it, the better their future mosque will be.
Pacifist Muslims have suggested rethinking this strategy (I remember reading an article here on CNN voicing Muslims from DC area if I recall it right) but it's the dominance of extremists in Islam that makes it sound like every Muslim wants the Mosque at ground zero site.
This is nothing more than a power trip power trip. It shows other muslims fighting us in the middle east that muslims can get their way and rub salt in the American's wounds. Just building this muslim building next to ground zero can embolden more arabs to become terrorists. It is a "no win situation for all Americans.
I think the Muslim community sees the mosque as a source of pride, and the well-intentioned portion of the community sees it as a place that will open up dialogue and promote a non-extremist interpretation of Islam. But I agree with you that even if the center lives up to such promises, its presence is disrespectful and insensitive to the victims of 9/11.
Why shall they relocate? Constitution grants the Muslims the right to build a place of worship. Did they break any laws in acquiring the building? any violations? if yes, then stop them, if not let them build the place of their worship. This is America. Wake up people.
2 blocks is a long way from Ground Zero.. What's wrong with people these days.
What if someone wants to build and EXXON/MoBil gas station within two blocks? Thats when America should go ballistic. We have such a difficult time of identifying the true enemies!
Let this damn issue go away and work on jobs, jobs, jobs.
How can we guess why the Muslim community insists on building the mosque there? My best guess is that perhaps it's being funded by the same Saudis who offered to help with building the 911 Memorial, but were rebuffed by the mayor and others at the time.
If the mosque really inflames anti-Muslim passions, it would seem to be a major mistake for them to build it there.
Our politicians are spending too much time talking about this mosque and where to build the Islamic community center. Let’s focus on our men and women who responded to the 911 disaster. They need additional medical help now and not tomorrow. Our government voted against providing them with extended medical care. But during the time of the disaster, they were called our American heroes. To the Democrats, Republicans and Independents, we need to set aside our political differences and pull together like we did on 911. It is our duty to do the right thing and take care of our own. How in the heck can we say God bless America when we just sit here and let their lives deteriorate.
St. Louis, Mo
Perhaps one reason is that they don't think it's right that they should have to move it. Why did lone black school children or black college students attend all-white schools just after Brown v. Board? Wasn't that offensive to a lot of people, and incite violent feelings among people? What is the reaction of local New Yorkers? (Not New York State, but New York City.)
Jack, the only ones who know the real reason for certain are those that are building the center. On that point alone, this is a dumb question.
If it were me, at this point I'd be staying put simply for the sake of showing that this is a country where people cannot be bullied and coerced. The sad thing here is that people like you are participating in the coercion.
I'd hoped our country had grown since 9/11, but it seems we've grown right into the country that the terrorists want us to be. Xenophobic and frightened. It's sad.
First the 14th amendment, now the 1st. Those founding fathers are really getting in the way when it comes to our ability to enact discriminatory policies while thundering forth with righteous anger, aren't they? -shaun
Maybe because they want to be close to the place where they attacked us or maybe there fighting there grounds for there rights but if they build there they will forever be chastised .
What about the Catholic Church right across the street from ground zero? The Muslim community has a constitutional right to build their community center two blocks away from ground zero.
Should we tear down the churches in downtown OK city where McViegh, a Christian extremist, committed an act of terrorism?
Are you stupid?
They don't want to move it because the mosque is designed to serve the lower Manhattan area community. Building it somewhere else would defeat the purpose of the project, as well as prevent them from practicing their religion. What, Muslims cannot practice in lower Manhattan?
The Muslim community doesn't want to relocate the mosque near Ground Zero out of principle. We are at war with radical Islam, not Islam itself. This is America and the last time I checked, freedom of religion was still a cornerstone of this nation. Trying to oppress a people based on their faith is non just anti-American, it's discriminatory. American's need to realize Islam is not inherently evil, just as Christianity is not inherently evil except when used in the hands of a fanatic.
Because Muslim community in America is as American as any other community. The fact that some extremists did terrorist attacks doesn't mean there is a problem with a religion. The religion is indeed peaceful. We need to treat these terrorists as individuals and not representatives of Muslims. So American Muslims feel that they should be treated as Americans first and should be given rights to practice religion peacefully. Building the centre in
The feelings and wishes of the 9/11 families should be considered above anything else. The rest of us cannot possibly understand the pain they have had to endure. It is highly insensitive for the Muslims to push the issue and there is no reason the mosque needs to be built right there. That isn't an area of high Muslim volume. Seems their message ought to be considered and it isn't favorable and we shouldn't tolerate it.
The real reason they don't choose to move their cultural center is because there is no reason to move their cultural center. What this issue does is effectively brings to light the bigots and zenophobes in America.
What is being said by those that oppose this cultural center is that not only are Muslim extremists the enemy of America (and rightfully so) but that moderate Muslims are the enemy of America. The best way to defeat any extremists is to embrace the moderates, by supporting this cultural center we are beating the extremists at their own game.
By opposing this cultural center we are playing into the stereotype put out by Muslim extremists that Americans "hate Muslims" and are willing to apply different standards to them than other religions.
For them to relocate would be un-American. They are expressing their rights to freedom of religion and private property. They do not have to cave-in to the will of the majority. America is not a direct-democracy.
The abandoned Convent in New York is not near Ground Zero. Murfeesboro Tennessee is not near Ground Zero, the states of Wisconsin and California are not near Ground Zero along with at least a dozen other sites but people like you are out there protesting against them. Yes Jack, they are different just like the Italians, Irish, Polish, Blacks and Native Americans that were hated in years. Nothing every changes.
This mosque business is such an insult to moslems by the American people. I think the muslim community should go out en masse with plackards stating "No Catholic Churches within two blocks of junior schools or playgrounds". Think this is ridiculous? Really? Thousands of children world wide have had their lives destroyed by a relatively small number of Catholic priest/pedophiles yet no one is tarnishing every priest for the sins of a few. How is this different from the small number of radical murderers in the 911 travesty which destroyed the lives of three thousand americans? Is it different because those murderers said they did it in the name of Allah? The pedophile priests did their dirty business in the house of God. I believe that the Jews, the Hindus, the Sikks, and the Native Americans should get out there with the Muslims to demand that the 70% of Americans who are clearly misguided if not bigotted. start acting like the tolerant people they pretend to be.
Being a New York state resident it makes me sick to my stomach to even ponder the posibility of a mosque within 100 miles of ground zero!!! We all know were the money is coming from it comes from the same countries that funded the attack on the world trade center!! They know that in today's world of political correctness that they can slap us in the face with such an act of disrespect
The question is beyond irrelevant. The owner of the land has the constitutional right to do with it as he wishes. End of story, unless you are a republican trying to stir up more hatred and fear.
They want to show the people of America they have the power and influence to build anywhere they want.
jack, obviously if in fact the builders wanted to build bridges they would build them in a less controversal site. this is like unreasonably insensiteve on their part. why president obama continues to stir that pot than gets annoyed at the reaction that HE CREATES proves that he is totally deaf to the will of the people. he even expects president bush to help him after he has bashed him for three years. perhaps gibbs should get obama drug tested.
number one rule in real estate...location...location...location
I think the real reason is quite plain. They are standing firm on their rights as American citizens. Period. If we allow narrow-minded, ignorance-based feelings to rule in this matter, then throw away our Constitution and everything this country stands for. Our rights as citizens barely survived George Bush, so the same brain-damaged folks are bound and determined to finish the job.
If we stop this center from being built, then who will be the next group to get their rights tossed out the window? If it keeps going, who will protect you and your free press? We need to really stop and think about this folks. Be very careful what you scream for.
Fellow Muslims understand the symbolic and metaphoric purpose of the Islamic community center to be built near Ground Zero. They want this mosque to be a landmark and example of how Muslims are peaceful and mundane Americans, not the extremists that the right wing politicians paint them to be...they want igorance to be rooted out. Its time to truly be a free America.
Because they paid 4 million something for the property and it goes against the Constitution. This is still the United States isn't it.
Jack They're calling it the cordova project Americans not familiar should look it up like i did They are staking their claim of victory on our soil
Because Muslim community in America is as American as any other community. The fact that some extremists did terrorist attacks doesn't mean there is a problem with a religion. The religion is indeed peaceful. We need to treat these terrorists as individuals and not representatives of Muslims. So American Muslims feel that they should be treated as Americans first and should be given rights to practice religion peacefully. Building the center at ground zero might be symbolic act to draw attention to this very issue.
The Cordoba House planners cannot compromise and build on an alternate site because because any concession to religious bigotry will undermine the free exercise of Islam nationwide.
Let's not forget that mosques in Tennessee and California–thousands of miles away from Ground Zero–are also being protested. The issue is not sensitivity: it is the assault on the basic 1st amendment rights of American Muslims.
If the Cordoba House planners give in it will have a chilling effect on Islam all over the country. But that's what the mosque opponents really want, right?
You said today that 3,000+ people were killed at the hands of muslim extremists. We need to take long, hard measures to disassociate the criminals that commited the heinous acts of 9/11 from true Muslims.
These animals were no more Muslim than the Ku Klux Klan were Christian. I know Americans want someone to blame, or a face to associate with terror. The frightening and dark reality is that terror on this level has no face.
Suppose Timothy McVeigh, who was a Christian, blew up a Mosque or an Islamic community center. Would there be much of an issue if a Baptist or Methodist Church was built near the explosion site?
I don't know what all the worry is all about. Last time I checked most of the Hawaiian Islands were owned by the Japanese including sites at Peril Harbor, and nothing is being said about that. I think this issue is being used as a diversion by conservatives who did not back funding for medical purposes for the first responders. Now thats a shame. I also believe that the birthers and others in the conservative party are trying to link Obama to radical Muslims, to help their chances in November. Why doesn't CNN have a commentary in regards to how outsourcing and free trade agreements are hurting the american workers, maybe General electric isn't interested in that?
The same reason Christians would never tear down and move Trinity Church – which is considerably closer to ground zero – knowing that Muslims died in the attacks too.
This is going to be a Sharia Mosque, they are not moving because this is their Trojan horse and this is about religious freedom, our right not to be Muslim, not now but in the future. Look at the Muslim 1400 year history, they can lie and deceive in the name of Allah for His supposed gain.
Most Muslim's in this country are as the common term used, sheeple and they are not in charge of the religion. Check France, Spain or Britain and see how it's going for them.
It's not a surprise if elements from Saudi Arabia are funding this project (and this seems likely to me). They have been building large Islamic centers and mosques around the world in prominent locations. I believe the location is VERY important for them, not to disturb the feelings of others as much as to say, "Hey, we're right; we're rolling in petro dollars given to us by divine providence; and we're powerful enough to get our way!"
Wade, Jacksonville, FL
It was not the New York muslims who were responsible for 9-11. Every religion has murdering extremists, but we do not hold the vast majority of these religions responsible for the acts of the few.
If we cannot put a place of worship (including an inter-faith reconciliation center) near (not at) ground zero, what is wrong with us?
As reported on CNN, there is a strip club just as close to the WTC site. If this is really "sacred ground", why not object to this too?
It seems we are all tolerant until we are actually called on to tolerate something.
The objections only make sense if you hold Islam itself to be responsible for 9/11.
Given the demographics of the hijackers, how is this different than request that Arabs–any Arabs–not travel within a two-block proximity of Ground Zero?
I'm really glad this issue has come up, though, because it seems to have given license for bigots across the land to take off their masks and show themselves for who they truly are. I consider that a great service to the non-bigot community.
I think the Catholic Church should move the Mexico City Cathedral since it's built on top of the site that was a sacred Aztec site and probably brings up bad memories of the Spanish extermination and then colonization of Mexican natives.
Sorry Jack. Nothing witty here. Seems to me it's simply greed like everything else that drives our society. The guy pushing this whole thing, regardless if he's a Muslim or not, is a Developer! It's all about the money!
I was recently informed that under Sharia Law, muslims must build a mosque on the site of a large slaughter of their enemies or on conquered grounds. That may explain why they are unwilling to move the mosque and intend to make it so grandiose.
They are trying to build this mosque only glorified there attack on 9/11.
The money came from the same people that paid for the attack.
No mosque should be built in our country.
In addition to signing on to the points being made in the first four comments, I'd point out that your "test" is an absurd straw-man. Saudi Arabia is, almost certainly, the richest Muslim nation (definitely the most "cash rich"). Moreover, there are lots of Suadis living in and around New York. Almost any large-scale Islamic project in the world, and certainly any large-scale project in New York, is going to have money tied to Saudi Arabia. That would be true whether the Cordoba House were being built on the Upper West Side or in Lower Manhattan.
The real reason Jack is that they've read the Constitution of the United States of America, and I think it's something that all AMERICANS should go back and read. It's not a document of convenience or some party favor that applies only if things are great. It's what we have agreed to govern ourselves by; it was designed to keep us from being fanatical and it keeps us from making decisions based on our emotions or what we feel is right. It tries its best to keep the playing field level.
How do those who scream for “strict constructionism” when appointing judges, supreme court associates now turn around and scream just as loudly that freedom of religion is okay as long as it’s not in their backyard.
By the way, there is a mosque in the Pentagon and two down on Wall Street.
Washington, DC My Brother died on AA Flight 11 into WTC 1.
I think that they are being quite insensitive to concerns (and that mildly concerns me), but it is 2-3 New York City blocks (in that part of Manhatton they are quite long) from the site and republicans are trying to turn it into more of an issue than it really is. They have every right to buil;d it where they want. If a back-to-the-earth Christian sect that Timothy (McVeigh? from Oklahoma City responsible for 100+ deaths) was talking about building it, no on would flinch.
Because in America we have innumerated rights that don't require "real reasons". We have the freedom to be Catholics, Muslims, Jews or even aethists without having to explain our reasons. Intellectual/emotion/spirtual freedom. It is one the the attributes that makes America special...the envy of the world. Le's not give that up.
What a bunch of crap...Maybe it's to remind us what bigotry does to the world. And one group will put a place of repentance for the world to think about. Now if we place a synagogue and christian church in that area we all might get some "peace" of mind.
I think the real reason is that real estate is at a premium in Manhattan. I also think about the in the 59 Muslims that died in the 911 attacks and the Insensitivity towards their families. If a Christian Fundamentalist killed a bunch of people in an abortion clinic, would we be having a conversation about building a church 2 blocks away from that clinic? I don't think so.
The reason they purchase the site rent was cheap. Only business around across the street OTB parlor, down the street several liguor stores, a gentlemen's place, and we know what that means. Ask me if I want a Mosque instead of the crap that is now there I would take the Mosque.
Jack, as a Muslim American, I am against the proposed plan to move the mosque from its current location. The politicians need to differentiate between a few terrorists and 7 million American Muslims who are proud Americans. By moving it to a new location, it will send a dangerous precedent and it will mean that we have accepted that we took part in the terrorist act. Why should we be held responsible for the actions of a few?
They do not want to move it because they own the land/building and it’s up to them to make that decision. If you bought a piece of land to build a home, no one should have the right to force you to move it somewhere else. You may say this is a sensitivity issue! The fact however is that Muslims in this country and just about 1.5 billion throughout the world had nothing to do with 9/11. The people who committed this atrocity are few in number and DO NOT represent Islam or Muslims.
Shame shame...have we forgotten that many Muslims died in the 9/11 tragedy. Every American, regardless of religion have the right to practice there religion. Besides the community surrounding ground zero has a large Islamic population, and the mosque is being built to serve the entire community. I don't believe its an attempt to dishonor the victims..we should be ashamed of ourselves for even making this an issue....it could have been a great chance to show the world that we are united as citezens and respect the liberty we take for granted.
I like you Jack but this whining about insensitivity really irritates me, why? Did we think about the feelings of the Iraqis when murderous thugs from Blackwater (now Xe) , paid with our money, massacred 17 innocent Iraqis, were then whisked away to the US, had their charges thrown out and the Pentagon then gave XE another $250 millions to continue target practice god knows where? How about the 1000’s of innocent women and children we killed and then paraded George Bush complaining that the Iraqis were not grateful for what he had done. We can bomb them, maimed them, take their natural resources and they should be OK with that apparently, please!
D, San Diego
the real reason? it's pretty obvious to three fourths of american,excluding obama,of course,that the muslims,i.e. iran and saudi arabia,want give us americans a slap right across the chops,and of course,in their own cowardly way,do it where we can't slap back.
if this mosque is allowed to be built in that area,every real american in this country should hang their head in shame...
As a naturalized ctizen of 25 years, I am offended. A few decades back whites were SENSITVE to blacks moving into their neighborhoods. Was THAT right? Grow up america. I am a muslim, and I am here. I have the same rights as any american. Stop this nonesense.
Insensitivity of the muslim community and this site will be an ignition point and will cause no end of problems for the city.. I fore see all sorts of nasty problems, muggings, riots, fires, is it really worth it? I think not... Move the dang building!
I'm sure they could relocate the Mosque – but wouldn't this admitting that they are somehow responsible for 9-11? As ordinary peace loving citizens and members of the community why should they be embarrassed to attend their own place of worship. Just because a few extreemists say they represent Islam doesn't mean we have to paint them all with the same brush.
In view of the New York controversy over a Muslim project to build a
tribute to Islam near the site of the 9/11 destruction, Americans should
sponsor a religious project called Twin Towers of Religious Harmony.
One tower would feature Christian displays and areas for recreation. The other tower would feature Jewish displays with areas for recreation.
Both towers would feature a hall of understanding where people of all
faiths could gather to peacefully discuss religion. The twin towers
would be built in Mecca.
Jack, you are dead wrong on this one. It IS about freedom of religion. Stop buying into the feigned outrage from the right, exploiting the victims of 911. Half of them are FOR the center. It is not ON ground zero or even across the street. I think you way off on this one Jack. You can't choose when to uphold the law. Doesn't matter who intends what, it's the law.
I heard this building was an incredible price for lower Manhattan. It's incredible how when hard times hit we turn so hateful. There were innocent Muslims killed that day too, as well as Muslim first responders. It's really sad how the media has let the Republicans get away with their xenophobic hate for way too long now. We could certainly use Walter Cronkite these days, to lead the way.
Can we go back in time and remember what was done in the name of Christianity. Did the whole world went to war against Christians? don't think so. we can not blame the Islamic religion for the actions of some nincompoop. Remember people, we are chasing the extremists whose acts have nothing to do what Islam stand for .
The real reason the Muslim Community doesn't want to relocate their building is that this is America and they don't have to. And no one, including Jack Cafferty can come up with a legal, plausable, honest reason why they should. Two blocks is too close doesn't cut it. Gingrich said we shouldn't allow any Muslim Churches in this country until the Saudis allow Christian Churches in their country. Newt, our Constitution is much older than theirs, and it has worked fine until all of you republicans take it upon yourselves to shred it.
The reason is simple. The present location represents a lightning rod opportunity like no other. After all, how often do you get an opportunity to build a new mosque on a site that was likely littered with body parts 9 years ago?
It's a win-win proposition. Building the mosque will demonstrate to the rest of the Islamic world the strength and righteousness of their religion. If it incurs vandalism along the way, it will demonstrate the despicability of the infidels. Basically a win for Islam.
If public outcry is too great, then the US can be portrayed to the rest of the Islamic world as being anti-Islam, anti-freedom of religion, and nothing but a sham where individual freedoms are concerned. Another win for Islam.
Insensitivity will not be part of the equation for the people 'back home.'
the greatest accomplishment for a muslim is to destroy anything of importance to the non believer and replace it with a mosque.
in France their stated goal is to replace the NOTRE DAME church and put a mosque in it's place.
no need to remind you on where EL AQSA MOSQUE in Jerusalem is built on.
and this trend will continue until they conquer the world for the infidels.
They won't move because they love the controversy and want to use this situation to proselytize new members who may be sympathetic to their cause.
People reporting on the ground zero mosque do not understand Islam’s political motive. Islam is motivated by its Quranic, and historical teachings. Islam cannot be moderated because its core teachings do not lead to peaceful ends. Viewers only have to ask why did Islam decide to build a mosque on Isreal’s holiest site-the temple mount? Islam builds provocative mosques on places it considers conquered land.
Probably because there is one the exact distance (according to mapquest) from Ground Zero already. There is a mosque that is in the same area which I am sure Muslims that worked in the WTC use to go and pray daily. This is such a non issue! Oh did we forget about the Muslims that work in the pentagon and pray 80 feet from where the plane hit. Come on, can we focus on something that truly matters?
Because Jack, we are better than this. Our first principles , the first words of our constitution, should have all of us marching in favor of a mosque because that is who we are. We should not be making decisions based on how others are. We, guarantee freedom of religion as a founding first principle and we are better than this...period.
The reason why Muslims want to build their mosque on the ground zero site of 9/11 is because most of the Muslim world saw this attack as an Jihad attack against the great Satan, America, and a victory for Islam. They now want to follow that victory with their physically occupation of that site, signifying their occupation of Americs, one city at a time.
This country would be far better off if it were to forget all this politically correct crap. It should not be built here because the majority of "citizens" of this country do not want it period. That's what matters and it is the only thing that matters. It has nothing at all to do with freedom of religion so thats a totally dumb argument. I guess if they wanted to build a mosque where the White House is then we would have to tear it down so they could build there, after all they have the right to worship where they want. Thats exactly what a lot of dumb dumbs are saying without any thought. It's a moot poin anyway, there is not a construction company that will touch this project.
Jack – Many Nazis were Christian church goers who distorted their religion for evil purposes . Has there been a public outcry about building churches near Jewish communities? The mosque debacle has little merit.
Though I can understand the strong emotions stirred by this issue, this is a country built on religious freedom and equal protection afforded under the law. There is no legal reason to disallow the mosque's construction. How are the critics of the mosque any different than the intolerant, dictatorial theocrats they claim to oppose? The peaceful embrace of another culture would do more good than furthered hate-mongering.
We've become a nation that is so touchy-feely and worried about offending someone, that we let ethnic groups have their way no matter how distasteful their project might be.
What's next, school holidays for Ramadan? Money that says "In Alla we trust"?
We've already lost battles over "Christmas Vacation", public manger displays, and school prayer. Only until we loose a identity as a Christian nation will the Muslims be satisfied.
I wonder if Christians, Jews, or Buddhists could create a community center and place of worship anywhere in Saudi. Not likely. I agree: follow the money behind the project.
Jack, how absurd? The real reason Muslums dont want to relocate the site is because they should not have to. Our Constitution susports them. This whole issue keeps getting traction simply because of the racist side of America and, it's the same reason why this race-based country continues to label Pres. Obama Muslum.
The real reason they refuse to relocate the mosque is because they want it to serve as a symbolic symbol of Muslim domination of the west. Why else would they call it the Cordoba House? Thats the same name that was given to the mosque that was built in Spain after it was conquered by Muslims in 700 AD, which was meant to serve as a symbol of Muslim domination.
The Muslim community doesn't want to move the Cordoba Center because of such hatred opposing them. This has discontinued being a simple issue of building construction. It has even surpassed the issue of religious freedom. Such force against a person would force that person to dig their heals in the ground. Much the same for the Muslims. If they yielded on this, they will always be pushed. This would be their albatross for Muslim relations in America.
We had a chance here to prove that besides being able to talk up the idea of religious freedom in America we practice it too, and how great that makes our Constitution and Bill of Rights. Instead, we've shown the world that America is just like everywhere else when it comes to religions we don't like, and we don't mean what we say. While we're whining about "hallowed ground", we're slamming these hallowed documents.
And if the trade center site is so sacred and hallowed, how come we're building a new office tower on it?
America is for sale. The rest of the world figured out how to take control and fulfill their directive by using the system against itself. STARE DECISIS. Whether the farce of non-existent border security or Mosque near ground zero.
Here's a better question. Why not let them build ON ground zero, if there is no sensativity to the situation.
Hey Shaun.... 14th Amendment wasnt written by the "Founding Fathers". (Hence the name "amendment") It was post Civil War. Its original purpose was well intentioned but should now be corrected because its meaning has been hijacked by a situation never concieved by our "Founding Fathers" whereby a foreign element uses our constitution to slowly erode our country by overwhelming us with psuedo citizins not loyal to the US.
I'm surprised at you Jack..being a New Yorker you know as well as I do that 2 blocks away can seem like the other side of town. You will never see that building from ground zero even if you try. Besides, all of the screaming about this is mostly from the right who are the one's screaming the loudest about our constitution being taken apart by Obama yet they want to ignore the 1st amendment...not to mention the 14th. It's getting a little silly.
NYC just can't stand the fact there is a new superstar in town, Islam. Some of my fellow Americans think that the glory of Islam overshadows 911. There is room in the inn for all.
Maybe that's where the worshippers are? Come on Jack. The people who want to build this mosque are not the people who attacked us on 9/11. Should we hold all Baptists accountable for the protests at soldiers funerals by the Westboro Baptist church. Should we blame all Catholics for the actions of a few priests? If you don't, then it's a double standard.
Mosque for the good of our community? More like a security threat to our country and a potential brewing ground for more terrorism.
From Owls Head New York: From what I read, the planners don't have the funds to build a mosque, anyway!!! furthermore, every New York Democrat in office is either opposed or they're making themselves "unavailable" for comment. Obama, as usual, flapped his gums when he should have kept out of it. Now every Democrat running in November will have yet another issue to deal with, thanks to his ill timed comment.
Let's turn this around. Suppose you are a member of a white Christian church in the South. You want to build a church near a black community.
This community objects because the KKK did some lynchings in this area. I am sure that white christens would be outraged to be stereotyped in this manner. There are one billion Muslims in the world. They are not all terrorists.
The real reason is a "Rub it in your face" reason. They know if they can get this in then they might as well have just flown another airplane into another building.
Lets face it. Developers don’t give a hang about what’s right. All they see are dollar signs. Has anyone thought about the repercussions of building a mosque there? I can see trouble on the horizon once this is built. What I don’t see, are the NYPD/FD responding very quickly to problems this mosque may face. I don’t believe the Muslim community thought this one out completely. Don’t be surprised if this building becomes abandoned within a year.
Because the ground is available and it will be a big improvement over what is there now. This isn't going to be built on ground zero. Ground zero is a few blocks away and can still be made into a shrine.
Please be more positive about things.
Gee, you think maybe it's because the land is in lower Manhattan and worth a freaking fortune?
This is a simple case of an owner not willing to sell his land at the price he's being offered. If the governor wants to trade some land for it, I hope he has a lot of land to trade.
what I'd like to know Jack is why they need more than just the
usual space for a mosque instead of a whole complex for
education, a gym, and all the rest of the things they mention.
on the internet the other day they are planning to build on
a 10,000 square foot of land in Tennessee and not only that
one of their own mentions a "holy war" if you will. who and what
is backing them and why do we need these people? certainly
nothing American is being done here. If they want
a place to worship, that's fine, but let that be all. we
who practive other religions her build our own churches
and get little help from the outside, and there are all sorts of
gyms, schools, etc. they don't need anything else.
as you can see I have no regard for them or their kind.
I'm an American and proud of it.
two reasons why they wont move jack. first there isnt any property Closer to the trade center property for them to build on. and secondly its an in you re face monument to the murderers who killed 3000 people.Question? if the "mosque" is not built on that site muslins will not suffer will they? but if it is built there all sensible thinking americans will suffer every day they see it or pass it
It's quite simple; they want to plant a victory flag. If you don't believe it, check the history of Muslim conquests in the Middle East and elsewhere.
Why two blocks from ground zero anyway? New York is a very big city and there are quite a number of vacant buildings and places that the mosque can be built. If they build the mosque it will be another form of victory on their part.
They won't because THEY CAN'T.
Imam still refuse to disclose the funding source. If they build it away from 911 site, I bet foreigners who funded the money will be unhappy.
This mosque is a clear mockery in the face of America and unfortunately thanks to rights given to these ungrateful muslims by this country, we can do absolutely nothing to stop this ABOMINATION.
Jack, the ONLY reason for building on that site is to shove New Yorker's and all American's faces FURTHER into their neverending pile of propaganda. This sect is responsible for the MURDER of 1,000's of people. We need to stop being a pushover, apologetic country and start to demand the respect we deserve for helping, defending and respecting every other country in the world. It's time to get tough with these people. I say take your "building" someplace else ~ preferably OUT of the United States. John (native New Jerseyan).
It's simple Jack. Relocating the planned mosque/community center will only reinforce the predominant and ignorant American thinking that all Muslims are somehow complicit in 9/11.
What's next? Should we ban all catholics from our children's public playgrounds because of the actions of a few sicko priests?
Why not move it? Principle. To let the anti-Islamic bigots win is only to strengthen their resolve, and further embarrass us in the eyes of the rest of the world. We are showing ourselves to be utterly hypocritical in this matter, and we look like fools because of it.
one more thing.... I love how everyone defends being Muslim as a "peaceful" religion.... they're not all terrrorists ect. A. Try to get through the first page of the Q'ran and B. Tell me any other religion that people strap bombs to themselves EVERYDAY and kill in the name of Islam???? I know some people do crazy things in the name of their religion, but you don't see "Suicidal Buddhist Bomber" or "Suicidal Christian Bomber kills 35". We're talking about a religion that these kind of folks are hailed as heros and their religion promises REWARDS for killing non-believers. Why are we tolerating this in a country like USA? What has happened to us???
The reason they don't want to move is similar to why the gays want marriage rather than a civil union....because it gets under the skin of those opposed to them and because they can, constitutionally. When human rights becomes a club for the minority to beat the majority with then we haven't really solved the problem have we ?!
This is an assault on religious freedom. Location does not matter.
Take a look at what's happening in Murfreesboro, TN. Conservative Anti-Islamist protesters are fighting to stop a masque there as well. I am from around the area. I can't believe this bigotry and fear are occurring so close to home. This is proof that opposition to the masque in NYC has nothing to do with where it is being built. It has everything to do with hate and fear towards Islam. I see these attacks on masques as an attack on religious freedom in the U.S. As a Christian, that scares the hell out of me.
This area chosen for this Islamic house of worship does not border on a memorial site. It does not look in any way, shape or form like Arlington national Cemetary, Gettysburgh or any other area where one would take off his hat out of respect. To the contrary the area chosen for this mosque is in a part of Manhatten that is commercial in nature and hundreds of thousand of people pass bye through that area every day.
What if this were not a mosque but a 711 or electronics store, owned by Muslims. Would anyone have any problem with such a venture being built in the same proposed location in lower Manhatten? Now what if the workers decided to pray as Muslims do, five times a day? Should such workers be forbidden to pray as Muslims do, five times a day because the store is is in walking distance from
Since when do the sensitivities of Americans matter?! If the sentiments of citizens were meant to have this much importance in the actions of others, desegregation of schools in many sections of the country would not have happened. If their actions are legal, your complaining will have no affect.
I have heard these questions earlier , and I am in total agreement : " Would we have permitted the Japanese to build a shinto shrine beside the Arizona Memorial in 1946? Would Poland have permitted a group of Neo-Nazis to build a shrine next to Auschwitz-Birkenau at the end of WW II ? Of course the answer is " No " ! This desire to build a mosque near Ground Zero is a real slap in America's face.
It's absolutely clear that it's a monument to victory on 9/11.
The real issue is do they have the constitutional right to build a mosque there? Technically, yes they do. However, what if another developer wanted to build a gay bar next to their mosque. He also has the constitutional right to do so. The muslim community would be infuriated just as most Americans are at the idea of a mosque next to ground zero. In summation there are plenty of other places for them to build a mosque.Even though some muslims were killed in 9/11 the hijackers were muslim and there intent was to kill Americans. A center for muslims to gather right next to ground zero would be an absolute travesty and a slap in the face to the American people.
3 blocks away is not Ground Zero. stop guilt tripping 9/11 on everyone to the point of unreasonable demands due to over-sensitivity. oh snap did i just say people are oversensitive about 9/11? yeah i said it because the sympathy card has been played way too often, way too long, and now is bordering on overriding our laws/Constitution.
And no i'm not muslim...
Jack, why not put the Mosque inside the new center at ground zero? No one would be offended based on the comments received so far .
I don't think the constitution give a "chuch" the right to bulid where ever it wishes. Let’s not confuse religionist freedom to building a church or mosque or any other house of worship. It gives you and me the right to freely practice whatever religion we wish to practice, not where ever we wish to practice it.
There is no question that a bunch of knucklehead terrorists hiding in caves will celebrate this mosque as a victory monument - no question at all. The correct question that demands an answer is why so many people do not understand that, or maybe do understand that, and want to give them their victory monument. This particular mosque with these backers at this location should not be built. They need to find another location. It is just that simple
I think that those behind the mosque are highly intelligent people and knew and counted on the type of response they would get.. They counted on the reaction of Muslims to this response to help radicalize more of them.
To claim that this mosques location will be inherently disrespectful to the memories of the men and women who died on 9/11, is an act of pure bigotry. To behave in a manner that is so far removed from the very ideas that make this nation great, would be the greater act of disrespect.
If the money is coming from Saudi or Iran then no it shouldn't be built, they should be open about who is funding this. Refusing to comment on where the funding came from is only going to draw concerns. However if the funding is all legit then technically it shouldn't be a problem, but still INCREDIBLY insensitive.
They refuse to answer that question becasue it is all a mockery.
If they hate the US and our way of life so much why would they want to settle here anyway. One Motive-to plot, recruit. train and further destroy. It seems that the American People are smarter than the Govt. Our Constitution was not meant to oblige the enemy.
they don't because – they don't have too.
9/11 culprits called themselves Muslim – they didn't represent Muslims no more than criminals, abortion clinic bombers, drunk drivers who hit & kill the innocent who label themselves 'christian'. should we likewise disallow churches from being built near the site of drunk driving accidents, bombings etc carried out by "so called Christians"? America should embrace Muslims – it is because a Muslim child was denied his right to lay down a prayer rug – that the new 'prayer in school' movement has been raised again.
Because giving in to stupid, hateful people is foolishness that only helps give stupidity more strength.
Because anyone who is offended by this center being located here is proving that they equate ALL Muslims with those 9/11 terrorists, no matter what they say.
I thought we were better than this. I was wrong.
It's called courage, and we Christians should have more Faith and courage, and less hatred and paranoia. Why should they move? So what if they money comes from Saudi Arabia or Iran, are you, going to give them the money?
Why don’t you talk about the banking system in the Middle East, their financial system hasn’t been nearly destroyed like ours because unlike us they don’t sell/trade debt. I am sure Wall Street would love to get a hold of the Middle East consumers as an emerging market.
perhaps we should build some christian churches in mecca or medina for those who wish to worship in the christian tradition. I'm sure the gov't there would have no problems with this
This is a non-issue. Americans are protected by their First Amendment right of..ever heard of it?...FREEDOM OF RELIGION! As a New Yorker, I feel for the terrible tradegy for the families and friends of those impacted by 9/11. But on the same token, we should not blame the acts of a few to the acts of the aggregate. If we are so predisposed to prejudice, then we better be prepared to remove all the churches near the Oklahama City bombing because Timothy McVeigh was a Christian.
You can't just group the Muslims who hijacked the plane on 9/11 with the general Muslims in the United States. Post- 9/11 has cause much religious discrimination towards the general public who are Muslim. There are two groups of Muslims that are involved in the conflict over the contruction of the new mosque. One of the groups involved is Sufism, which is supported by Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, who served in Bush's administration. This group is entirely different from the radical Muslims who caused 9/11. I believe that by accepting building of the mosque we can be able to remove the discrimination. I think that the reason that they don't want to move any where else is because they are testing America on whether we can be loyal to our constitution and the definition of America
Who knows? Maybe the people just want a place to worship their god or maybe they want to humiliate America by taking advantage of the system we provide. Whatever the case is, this is just another issue that ticks me off because all this could have been avoided if people were just a little bit smarter.
I think it was Jon Oliver on the Daily Show last night who said Catholics have the right to build a church next to a playground, but should they? It's late night comedy. Outrageous – but i sure get his point. It's not a simple black and white issue and no one is served by treating it as such. Let's calm down.
I've heard this would be a great opportunity to send a message of tolerance, and I have to agree... it would be great for Muslims to send a message of tolerance and be observant of the sensitivities of Americans and say "We get it... we'll relocate this mosque."
Oh, is that NOT the message of tolerance you were talking about? Funny how in dealing with Muslims, it's always someone else who has to be the "tolerant" ones.
i would say it is as simple as "the ball is in their court"-my vote is please find another location.
The real reason, because of Money. Bloomberg wants money for his next election, for Mayor or Senate, but he wants Muslim money. And he needs their votes, because the rest of NYC is pretty sick of him.
The REAL reason is LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION! From a Real Estate prospective, this is prime property. Where would you propose they move? The Bronx, Staten island? The long term value to this project is predicated on location. you can build a building anywhere, this is true. But what is the best way to maximize the real estate investment? To build in Manhattan.....
They want to show that they can beat America twice. The danger is that Islam is not a monolithic religion as the the Jewish and Christain religions are. They have no real head. Immans run each mosque pretty much as they please. They all claim to follow the Koran which allows and even advocates killing the "infidel". That infidel is us. If they claim that they aren't violent let them deny the Koran's teachings.
Maybe they want to build it there because it's less expensive than having to buy property at a new location? If we're that concerned about where the money is coming from, the US should stop providing it to them by buying their oil! In any case, this location is two blocks from ground zero. If it can't be built there, then where will be acceptable? Four blocks away? Half a mile? Let's not forget that the right to express our religion in this country has been protected through the years by people of many faiths.
For once I am proud of the responses I am reading. I am so sick of the racist and moronic comments posted on so many other items. Absolutely, no problem with the Mosque. The vast majority of Muslims are decent and respectful people. The radicals are the minority, just as they are in Christianity and Judaism. All faiths have their radicals and extremists. By carrying on this anti Muslim ranting it only serves to turn more against us and feed the propaganda machine of the extremists. Most Christians have no clue, when they say things like 'their God' and 'our God'. It's the same God. Much of the Quran is taken directly from the Old testament and actually toned down on the violent aspects of that book. All the Christian favorites are honored in the Quran, including Jesus and Mary. The racist right wing il informed Christian right needs to get over itself and get an education.