Imam: I Understand The Sensitivity, But …

Rauf Says Mosque Is Not Moving But 'Nothing Is Off Table'

NEW YORK (CBS 2/WCBS 880/1010 WINS) — The man behind the mosque finally stepped in front of the cameras on Wednesday night.

Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf said he’s not changing locations.

He finally answered tough questions about the proposed Islamic center at ground zero, and CBS 2’s Sean Hennessey was there as families of 9/11 victims watched and listened.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Paul Murnane reports on the Imam’s comments
LISTEN: 1010 WINS’ John Montone reports from Park Place

These were the words the world has been waiting to hear and on Wednesday night the imam himself was direct, determined, and mindful of the controversy, but not ready to walk away from it.

“I understand the sensitivity of the people. I really do,” said Rauf, founder of the Cordoba Initiative.

Imam Rauf explained Wednesday night on CNN that he really can’t back down from the anger and angst over the controversial mosque, just two blocks from ground zero.

“If we do move it will strengthen the argument of the radicals to recruit, their ability to recruit, and their increasing aggression and violence against our country,” Rauf said.

The spiritual leader said the location has been known since last year, but has only become controversial because of politics.

“Had I known this would have happened, we certainly wouldn’t have done this,” Rauf said.

Watching the imam were two 9/11 loved ones touched by the same tragedy, but who have very different takes on the appropriateness of the mosque.

When asked if he supported what the imam had said up to that point, Charles Wolf said, “this genie is out of the bottle.”

Wolf lost his wife and was never able to bury any parts of her body. Still, he said he supports the mosque location and what the imam spoke about Wednesday night.

“I believe they have overstepped our bounds because there was already a mosque there for a year, over a year and they didn’t have any problem with it. Someone decided to create a problem with this,” Wolf said.

On Long Island, Rosemary Cain watched with frustration. She lost her firefighting son, George, and never heard an answer to the question she needed.

“Why can’t the site be moved? If he really wanted to build bridges he would start right there,” Cain said.

During the interview, the imam admitted that there was a slight chance the site might be moved.

“Nothing is off the table,” Rauf said.

Watching intently was Cain.

“Everyone knows how wide an area ground zero is and I would not be surprised if human remains are on top of one of those buildings,” she said.

For his part, the imam returned to his principle of not backing down in the face of the anger that has enveloped this site for months.

“The more that the radicals are able to shape the discourse, the more it strengthens the other side,” Rauf said.

“I don’t know what the outcome will be but he sounds like he’s pretty dug in,” Cain said.

In the meantime, a widower said the imam is doing the right thing.

“I think this is one that feel this way are going to have to set aside, and understand and that there is a big difference between the different ends of Islam,” Wolf said.

The imam said he wants to continue the conversation with families of 9/11 victims, saying if the mosque moves, the chance for healing moves with it.

Comments

One Comment

  1. Ahmed Rashad says:

    all the hate and racist comments about muslimes and islam.

    so tell me again, why were u guys fighting in WW2

  2. Ahmed Rashad says:

    All the hate and racist comments about Muslims and Islam.

    So tell me again, why were u guys fighting the Nazs?

  3. Are 2 tree 2 says:

    REFERENDUM, people. Let the people of New York city decide if they want this mosque or whether they want it moved.

    Apparently, referendums, or “initiatives”, are allowed in the city of New York:
    “The State Legislature and/ or City Council can place Proposals, Questions, and Referendum measures on the ballot for New York City voters to adopt a change in the State Constitution, change a law or approve the expenditure of funds without legislative actions. In addition, a Measure can be placed on the ballot if it meets certain legal requirements and if proponents show public support by collecting signatures of at least five percent (5%) of the city’s registered voters.”

    Gather 5% of the signatures and get it on the ballot.

  4. Patrick says:

    TO jp: My interaction has been with what I would call secular Muslims and as a consequence there has been no action and no reaction. Would the same apply to religious Muslims? I would have to guess that different religious denominations within the religious Muslim community, as there are in any religion, would elicit different actions by differing religious Muslims and cause differing reactions by non-Muslims. All of this controversy is because the American people, both Muslim and non-Muslim, have had limited interaction with religious Muslims, albeit more interaction with secular Muslims and therefore cannot rationalize with whom to have a friendly relationship which has been adversley amplified by the historical conflicts betweeen the Muslim and the non-Muslim community. Fortunately, the United States has diversity as one of its greatest strengths and even though there may be stumbling blocks along the way the freedom of diversity will come out ahead of those countries who do not have diversity and freedom. This is America–Freedom, Liberty and Justice for All.

  5. dom youngross says:

    Nothing new here. As before, submit to Islam peacefully, or by the sword. Rauf is the self-appointed emissary offering the peaceful-submission terms. Or he warns ‘radical’ Muslims will be encouraged – the sword part.

    The spread of Islam is Rauf’s prime concern. He along with all religious wannabe leaders can take a hike.

  6. Are 2 tree 2 says:

    REFERENDUM- end of story.

    1. KPMc says:

      Constitutional rights aren’t subject to a popular vote even… no.. especially in our democracy. Get a clue people.

      1. Are 2 tree 2 says:

        It may be true that such a referendum would be overturned by the courts as “unconstitutional”, as the recent proposition against gay marriage in California was.

        But before that happens it would be months, if not years, meanwhile the mosque at ground zero would be delayed. It would be clearly shown that the people do not want the mosque there, which would increase pressure on this guy Rauf. It would draw more attention to the imperialistic intentions of Islamists.

        Consider it as a kind of guerrilla political tactic. And I think it would work.

  7. Are 2 tree 2 says:

    Does New York state have a referendum law?

    If so then I recommend New York citizens to get the issue of building the mosque there put to a citizen referendum. Let the people decide, rather than the politicians. I suspect that the people would vote for it not to be built there (but could be wrong).

    Get a referendum vote on whether to build it or not.

    Also, I will have to review the Constitution, but I think it guarantees the right to freedom of religion, but not necessarily to practice this wherever one wants. There maybe some later legal decisions about this, though.

    My concern with the mosque is that some Islamists (who are fairly numerous, although not always violent) will take this as an implicit encouragement. That is, they will think,”well we succeeded in destroying the WTC and now we have built a mosque here”. Not all, or even most, Muslims will think like that, but it is disturbing to think that building the mosque is actually condoning this kind of attack. And I really do think that some Muslim visitors to this site will have this feeling (though they may keep it to themselves).

    Someone should do an analysis of religious rights in Muslim countries. It is funny that Muslims are so good at using the rights afforded to them in liberal democracies, but their own states fail to provide the same rights to non Muslims. I would say: when I am allowed to build a church in Mecca, then I will agree for a mosque to be built at ground zero.

  8. HA says:

    There is no quick fix to what lays before us.
    There are two guys Mr A and Mr B who happens to be from the same group/country. They travel to United States of America, unaware of each other’s intentions. Mr A is full of hate and Mr B wants a successful life. Later Mr A carries a brutal and cruel criminal act that kills thousands of innocent people including children and women, leaves thousands of families affected for the rest of their lives with an irreparable loss. Mr B becomes aware of the incident and is very upset and heartbroken. He sees his future bleak. He sees that Mr A is an idiot, and is an a****l*. He believes Mr A should be brought to justice and he feels for the affected families in true spirit.

    I just want to know if we should portray Mr B as Mr A because of they belong to same community!
    There is one Mr A in every Million. Mr A would remain there for as long as we live. But that would not endanger us – would it? We would never be able to get rid of Mr A. They would remain in different forms and with different norms with their self-perceived unjust ‘justifications’. There is not medicine for idiocy and there is no cure. But still we have a hope until the day we decide Mr B is no different than Mr A.
    Should we tell Mr B that he should have no business in USA to show respect for the bereaved familes? Its like telling Mr B that he is not different than Mr A. Isn’t it guys. Open your eyes. Mr B is standing with affected families and you are pushing him to stand with Mr A whom he hates!!!!

  9. ree says:

    Why is it so difficult to understand that this man has a very good understanding of our common enemy and how to stand against them. I keep hearing ‘mosque at/on ground zero’. It’s not, it’s a few blocks away. and if we’re so sensitive to the dead there, why are strip clubs, bars, gambling halls and the like tolerated. This is a down-trodden area, and having a positive influence would probably improve both the area and the property values.

    That is, of course, if the bigoted, intolerant voices will let everyone just live in peace.

  10. Cameron says:

    I think there’s a confusion taking place within the same argument. On one hand, we (media figures) are proclaiming Islam to be a peaceful religion and not sharing the same views of the radicals, and also proudly standing behind the freedom of religion. And on the other hand, when it comes to the debates regarding any issue, we combine the peaceful Islam with the ones with radical belief. So if that’s the criteria for passing judgments, then we should hold every religion accountable for every horrific act that has taken place in history. “Radical belief”, it’s a strange term that has evolved. Among the many definitions of the word Radical”, it also means concerned with or tending to concentrate on fundamental aspects of a matter. This term doesn’t seem to fit the requirements for the description. The correct term should be “Superficial Belief”, for anyone who uses religion as their basis for personal agendas and for those also who is willing to pass judgment on others at a moments notice.

  11. jimmy says:

    It is sad to wad so many extreme comments on this forum. Hateful and spiteful comments only attract the same.

    I also think that building a mosque on Ground Zero is insensitive and inconsiderate. Even though there might be other sites in NYC (and unless you are areal estate expert from NYC, you don’t know that), that is unfortunately not the question.

    Regardless of sensitivity, the question is whether we are still a State of Law. If we are then we can stop the mosque, but only after amending our constitution. That is what being in a state of law is.

    Hey, I would have liked the guys from Enron not be able to take the Fifth; they didn’t kill people, they just threw thousands of people in misery and destroyed families. But you know what, he was allowed to because that’s what our constitution says.

    And the same constitution says that people can bear arms (not that I condone it). People are free to associate, and to practice religion, by law. It might not be to our pleasure sometimes, but it is a protected right.

    On another note, I think the Iman has a point: if we force them to back down, it will be ill perceived by extremist muslims (a slim minority) all over the world, and paradoxically will likely make us less safe. It is unfortunate that this has been so publicized because the entire world is now looking. It is even more unfortunate for those who have lost loved ones in the WTC, and will have to swallow this bitter pill.

    As one comment has said, though, this will show that we can take the higher road.

    Extremism only breeds extremism. Christ said to turn the other cheek for a good reason. An eye for an eye leads only to blindness.

    To some comments here; I’d like to say that I do not believe that the Coran accepts or promotes pedophiliac sodomy. Just to make sure I do not get insulted for this comment, take note that I am an average Roman Catholic, married and with 4 children.

    1. “if we force them to back down, it will be ill perceived by extremist muslims (a slim minority) all over the world”

      This is a silly argument. These people are not going to change their mind about the US, Europe or supposed infidels no matter what we do. Either way, they will still continue their crusade based on their bigoted attitudes that we are all “infidels”.

  12. corey says:

    more love not hate people!

    religion should be treated like a man/woman: it doesn’t matter if s/he is an arab, asian, aborigine, a westerner, european,; big/slanted eyes…
    as long as ur happy, then who’s to judge?

  13. amos says:

    A religion that hates dogs and pigs has no place in my heart…

  14. amos says:

    anybody knows where i can get a pig laden truck?
    need 1 to drive straight into a “community centre”

  15. Human says:

    According to Islam faith God is everywhere than why too much insterest in Building Many coslty religious places.

  16. David says:

    The Libs are trying to compare an irrational stupid red neck that wants to burn a Koran to radicals that believe it is part of their religion to kill innocent people in the name of Islam. Please remember this point….you can never appease Islam until it conquers and governs your society.

  17. Kam says:

    This is absolutely ridiculous. What insensitivity to the families who lost thier loved ones! For God’s sake can no one see what this is all about? While we understand the right to worship any God, why is it that the Imam is insisting that the mosque be built right over there? Did God say that the only place to worship was at that location? And then he goes on to say that this project had been going on since last year and that there was a mosque since one year at that same spot. When did 9/11 take place? Surely not last year! It took place in 2001. So the mosque was built in 2009. Strange way of praying to God!

  18. greg says:

    I do not believe that a group has a right to build a building next to where that group murdered. Should we allow a Japanese cultural center next to the USS Arizona? How about Jeffery Dahmer moving next to the family where he killed and ate their children. This is NOT about constitutional rights is is about a religion making a statement to the world. It’s like a dog peeing on a post marking it’s territory, while people say it has the right to do so. Are you stupid?

  19. Bill says:

    This country was founded on religious freedom. Six of the thirteen colonies were religious havens for a particular religion. Why? because back in Europe each country had a state religion. If you weren’t a member of the state religion’s church then you were oppressed. Here in the US you are free to practice what ever religion you prefer. I understand why some people may be upset by a Mosque near the World Trade center site, but that is attacking a whole religion for the acts of a few extremists.

  20. John says:

    Just bury a few dead pigs on the site, and they will not be able to build a Mosque there on “pig tainted earth” End of problem, move to new site…

  21. Tom says:

    I know I said I was done talking but I did just want to applaud Dan Te aka Jeez and award him “Troll of the day.” I noticed his garbage laden comments at the bottom of other articles here on the site.

    Like Nathan, I’ll be reporting your hate-filled rhetoric anytime I see it. Every time, actually.

    1. jeez says:

      well, thank you tom…
      but keep it for yourself…you need it more than i do…
      IBy d way u might wanna do something about terry jones’ bonfire….

    2. Dan Te says:

      Nope. Not jeez, you censoring hypocrite.

      I know your type Tom, you whine and complain about “other” people meddling with Constitutional Rights. Than you promptly turn around and Censor Censor Censor. Typical two-faced bone head bleeding heart liberal.

      Here’s hoping you work in tall buildings the next time a plane comes flying around. Maybe you’ll wake up just as it’s burning.

  22. nathan says:

    You can keep posting that racist screed Dan and Ill keep reporting it and it will keep being deleted. Maybe you should go burn a Koran.

    1. Dan Te says:

      Typical two-faced hypocritical bleeding heart bone head “nathan”. Whines about Constitutional Rights and than just CENSOR CENSOR CENSOR. Now why doesn’t that surprise the world?

      And since when is muslime a race? It’s a disease.

      FACT: Everywhere where there are mu-Slimes, sh-!t happens.

      China — sh-!t happens
      (suicide bombers that kill little children and run amok with metal pipes in the streets)

      India — sh-!t happens
      (mu-slimes burned 100s of hindus alive in packed trains and burned villagers alive while they slept)

      Middle East — sh-!t happens
      (suicide bombers that kill little children)

      Russia — sh-!t happens
      (suicide bombers that kill women and children in crowded theaters)

      South East Asia — sh-!t happens
      (mu-slime thugs who kidnap teachers, school children, nurses, priests for ransom, than murder them all)

      Europe — sh-!t happens
      (suicide bombers that kill little children)

      USA — 9/11 happened

      Goes to reason, no mu-slimes, no sh-!t.
      All these camel turds understand is violence and lies anyway. I say we oblige them by killing them all and than lie about how sorry we are.

      Islam. It’s a disease. And like any other infestations of boils, pox and pestilence, it should be eradicated. You don’t talk to diseases. You eradicate them like you did polio.

      And some bleeding heart imbecile here will post that it’s just a few individuals that are murderous, just like any other society. But than conveniently forgetting about the Fact that it happens worldwide and by a LOT MORE than just a few individuals. And they also continues to blank out of their empty heads the worldwide mu-slime jubilee celebrations as people burned on 9/11.

  23. Joe says:

    I am a soldier in the US Army and I am a Muslim. I volunteered joining the military after Sep 11 because I love what this country stands for. But if my religion, beliefs and freedom are destroyed then what makes the US different from other extremist groups? We need to wake up and not let extremists re-write our constitution.

    1. jeez says:

      then you Joe, has a distorted view of the religion.
      You are a deviant who embraces a distorted view of the religion, unlike Mr. Osama and his friends…
      u’re not gonna get virgins and access to heaven if u kill ur moslem bros and sis…what is wrong with you?
      wanna try Buddhism? maybe u’ll be enlighten and get a lotus ride to heaven…

      1. KPMc says:

        First of all… Thank you Joe for your service to our country which enables people like me to live freely in the greatest country in the history of the planet known as earth!

        Secondly… if we could choose who are fellow Americans were… who would you pick? Joe or Jeez? Cause personally I’d send Jeez to a desolate desert while I’s be proud to call Joe a fellow American.

    2. From Wisconsin says:

      Just a brief comment Joe,

      Thank you for your service to our country!

  24. From Wisconsin says:

    I believe in religious freedom. I believe in freedom of speech. Both are said to be guaranteed “rights” in the U.S. constitution.

    That said . . . I believe it is ill-advised to build a mosque on “ground zero.” Whether Imam Feisal Abdul’s intent to build on “ground zero” is simply due to stubbornness or honorable intent remains to be seen. His stated intentions will be greeted by many Americans with a great deal of skepticism, disbelief and at times, outright anger. To build a mosque on an area that was decimated by Al-Qaeda Muslim terrorists . . . To build a mosque on an area where 2,751 individuals lost their lives on that fateful 9/11/2001 date due to acts involving unfathomable violence . . . To build a mosque on an area where countless thousands of family members and friends may still mourn and never forget the day that changed their lives . . . To build a mosque on this area . . . is offensive.

    This statement is not to equate all Muslims or all those who believe in the Muslim faith with violence. Indeed, I believe many in the Muslim faith believe in and pray for peace and goodwill, as other religious groups do. The acts of terror on that day though, are the antithesis of any peaceful gesture. I believe this proposed mosque will only cause more division amongst the citizens of the United States and more unrest.

    Two options instead of a mosque:

    1. If one truly wants to build a house of “peace”, why not build a Baha’i temple? This faith believes in incorporating all religions equally and incorporates religious symbols of all faiths into its structures.
    2. Have this area (“ground zero”) recognized as a National historical site or National landmark, barring anyone from building any religious symbolic building on this site. Designate this area as a park with ponds and benches. A place to reflect, to remember, (pray if so desired) and to honor those who had once lived amongst us.

    1. KPMc says:

      This “area” is a living, breathing city for over 200 years.. with blocks, buildings, streets, stores, churches and people. It’s not a park. It is a neighborhood. No one is going to raze billions of dollars of NYC real estate just to appease peoples sensitivities not would I want them too.

  25. Glenn says:

    Nothing he could say would satisfy the bigots. Just build the thing.

  26. adrein says:

    I believe in the intention of those people trying to build a mosque or a multi-faith building near the ground zero and I also believe in the Americans constitutional right, but I think somebody has to give way here just for the respect of those innocent people who were victims of the atrocities made by a few Muslims. Let this be not an issue of rights or religion but an issue of respect of the feelings of the humans affected by the past tragedy. On the the hindsight, letting a mosque built near the ground zero is a triumph of America and democracy itself because it will show to the world that despite the grave grief, of the family of those Americans who lost their lives in 9/11, despite the biggest insult of building a monument of the religion in one way or another was linked to the tragedy, Americans still have to swallow the bitter pill just to show to the world what it takes to be a democratic country. It is just ironic that this time Americans are asking the family of those who already suffered the tragedy the most to sacrifice their feelings for the second time just to be an American.

  27. ELVISE says:

    you cannot blame anybody who doubts anything said by a muslim because in the quran they are allowed to kill or lie to the infidels in order to promote the interests of islam. inside the library you have the right to talk but you are requested to be silent out of respect for others. the reason is common sense. muslims have the right to build the mosque in that place but common sense also dictates to consider the feelings of other people especially those who lost their love ones in the 9/11 attack. what were not specifically written in the constitution can be filled up with common sense.

  28. madmax says:

    OK, little boys and girls. In 20-40 years from now, no one will question the building of a Mosque near Ground Zero. Humans are emotional beings, and building one 9 years after 9/11 is a little too close to the tragedy. Shinto temples were not built at Pearl Harbor in 1951, I’m sure. Also, this country was founded on Judeo-Christian ethics. Read the Constitution. If the Imam gave it some time, I’m sure no one would object. I, too, question is adamancy on building the Mosque right now, so close to a tragic, almost holy, site.

    1. Glenn says:

      I gave up on your comment at word number 5.

  29. Patrick says:

    HI jp: Thanks for explaining that the term only applies a system of life for Muslims to follow. Now explain how follwing that system of life interacts with Muslims toward non-Muslims?

  30. argenyo28simone@yahoo.com says:

    wake up americans 9/11 criminal attack killed many moslems too and who was behind that crimina action was not a moslem

  31. Patrick says:

    TO jp: Thanks for explaining that the term only applies a system of life for Muslims to follow. Now explain how follwing that system of life interacts with Muslims toward non-Muslims?

    1. jp says:

      Very easy. Like you said, “other projects” had the same objective correct? So if those other projects started and were running for years, have you ever been approached by any Muslim or were you affected by it yet?

      1. Patrick says:

        TO jp: My interaction has been with what I would call secular Muslims and as a consequence there has been no action and no reaction. Would the same apply to religious Muslims? I would have to guess that different religious denominations within the religious Muslim community, as there are in any religion, would elicit different actions by differing religious Muslims and cause differing reactions by non-Muslims. All of this controversy is because the American people, both Muslim and non-Muslim, have had limited interaction with religious Muslims, albeit more interaction with secular Muslims and therefore cannot rationalize with whom to have a friendly relationship which has been adversley amplified by the historical conflicts betweeen the Muslim and the non-Muslim community. Fortunately, the United States has diversity as one of its greatest strengths and even though there may be stumbling blocks along the way the freedom of diversity will come out ahead of those countries who do not have diversity and freedom. This is America–Freedom, Liberty and Justice for All.

  32. HistoryVet101 says:

    I wonder how well it would go over with the Muslim communities in Iraq, Pakistan, or Afghanistan if our CIA decided to build Christian shrines near the locations where our Predator drones took out Muslim terrorists.

  33. foreigner says:

    Dan Te,
    your half wit mind is already set, doesn’t matter what others say. you’d make excellent KKK recruitment. the ones that blew up the buildlings had exact your mentality. thank god, founding father’s didn’t share your view. you seem a young gung ho, you should travel outside US and experience cultures & religion and politics.

  34. Patrick says:

    TO jp:
    Did ylou know that after the Pear Harbor attack, federal officials closed it and sent its priest back to Japan?. But by late 1947, its adherents started it up again, without any fanfare or New York mosque hollering and posturing. Then a year later, federal officers raided it, shut it down, and Washington confiscated the property as alien-owned.

    1. jp says:

      Patrick,
      Yes I do know that actually. Thanks for leaving most of the story out though. The government ruled that the federal officers were wrong and returned the property. There are now four Shinto shrines there.

      Why would you leave that part out? That proves that your trying to persuade others and push your point.

  35. lordpet says:

    What do the 9/11 families of the Muslim victims have to say about this Islamic Center? Does it hurt their feelings? And yes, radical Muslims kill lots of people world wide. Who do they blow up the most? Other Muslims, like the ones who would build this center. Osama would be just as happy to see this thing not be built as would the USA anti-mosque folks. You judge people by the company they keep.

  36. Mike says:

    Everything needs to be accounted for. Despite 9/11 being 32 dark skinned Muslims, remember it’s a religion and not a race. There are Bosnia muslims, french muslims, italian muslims, german muslims, american muslims, just like there are italian catholics, german catholics, bosnian catholics, american catholics. If there’s a link to anyone being a terrorist, take them out. That’s why the Patriot act was put into effect. But if American muslims are trying to pray and no red flags went off that the FBI and CIA know about and we don’t, then leave them alone.

  37. Peter North says:

    Marie; you’re pretty stupid you know that. You and Dante together.

  38. Marie says:

    Notice how the good imam does not once address any questions put to him with regard of insisting on thislocation at all costs, the change of the name from cordoba to park 51, the sharia law compliance of US and his freindly association with and endorsement from Hamas. Lets not forget grand opening of 9/11/2011.
    sheep in wolf’s clothing indeed.

  39. nathan says:

    I really wish both sides would leave September 11th alone out of respect for the families. Cant the protests be on the 10th or 12th?

  40. Tom says:

    Bottom line, it’s becoming crystal clear that the latest problem this country is facing is that we’ve got people that believe the Constitution’s rights can be given and taken away because we don’t like someone’s ethnicity, religion, etc.

    During the Bush era, I heard alot of talk about who was being a real American and who wasn’t. But I gotta say, if THIS isn’t un-American, I don’t know what is.

    And with that, I step down.

  41. Tom says:

    LOL TommyF. Well played.

  42. Tom says:

    Oh sorry Dan, It’s just that I tend to ignore stupidity.

    1. TommyF says:

      So you’re saying you ignore yourself? That’s harsh.

  43. Patrick says:

    Similar Muslim projects have expressed ” ideals that include service to humanity, speaking out against injustice, and promoting a high moral standard amongst society” through “the implementation of a program that seeks to achieve these ideals which they call Iqamat-ud-Deen, the establishment of the Islamic system of life. ” Would the Imam like to address these concerns? It begs to ask the question if Japanese Americans did not not build a Shinto place of worship or community center at or near Pearl Harbor in the aftermath of WW11, why are Muslim Americans so adamant in in their building of this project? Does this Imam beleive in Iqamat-ud-Deen, the establishment of the Islamic system of life? ” To say this project must be built is inconsistent with the American values of being compassionate toward your fellow American. So is this Imam truly compassionate to others or does he have an overriding passion for Iqamat-ud-Deen, the establishment of the Islamic system of life?

    1. jp says:

      I’m go to let you in on a little secret. There are Japanese shinto shrines in Hawaii, near Pearl Harbor. The Islamic system of life is for Muslims, not for you. If you don’t believe then you are not affected.

  44. Tom says:

    Oh…oh I see what you did there, Dan, using that old “Reading is Fundamental” tag-line and turning it into a snide quip.

    Oh yes, how clever. Bravo…no really, BRA-VO.

    Did I say anything about murderers walking around free? No. What I said was that not all Muslims are terrorists or seeking to destroy this country’s way of life.

    Just like I believe that not all Republicans are homophobic bible-thumpers who can’t wrap it around their heads that anyone other than a white male in his fifties to sixties can be president.

    However, YOUR comments, or at least what you’re suggesting indirectly, is that every single Muslim in the world is an evil terrorist mastermind, plotting to destroy our country.

    Or at the very least, all the Muslims here should be punished for the actions of the nutcase extremists. Tell me, Dan: when a person goes to Jail for murder, do you punish his or her entire family for the individual’s actions? Do you spit on every German you see because of what their country did in WW2?

    Most rational people are able to separate the rational from the irrational. It’s clear that you were not born with ability.

    1. Dan Te says:

      Yep. Reading is definitely NOT fundamental with you Tom. Read the last paragraph on my FACTS list. It already answered your line of politically correct bull.

      1. Barbara says:

        Wow ur a complete idiot. I don’t have the time to point out the ridiculousness of your rational but it’s just complete nonsense. You make so many ridiculous assumptions that make no logical sense that I don’t know why Tom is bothering to argue with you at all. People like you shouldn’t be taken seriously. You’re talking about things you no nothing about, aka ur talking out your ass!

  45. Nick Bitetto says:

    Inconsiderate; Unsympathetic; Inviting/inciting trouble from extreists on both sidesof the issue, such action is inevitable. The Imam had too anticipate these repercussions when considering this site. he had numerous choices in selecting a site … I have too question his motives!

    1. Tom says:

      Absolutely, Nick. I’ve pondered them myself.

      But here’s the thing: If we deny them the Constitutional right to build this Cultural Center, then we might as well toss out the Constitution.

      We cannot pick and choose who gets rights because our emotions are raw from that great Tragedy. When we do that, we stop being America. We become no better than the countries that impose their marshal laws, or laws that benefit only certain castes or religions, but not others.

      Will it sting for some people to see this center built? Yes. But in the long run it will show that we are still America, where everyone is privy to the same rights and privileges.

      1. Len says:

        Brilliant, Tom.

      2. Dan Te says:

        Reading is NOT fundamental with you is it, Tom? They have a Constitutional Right to religion. But nowhere in the Constitution is there a right to slaughter people wholesale. Note: murderers here tend to get thrown in jail – Constitution permits that.

        But please feel free to totally not read the point when you and Len (and his many aliases) makes another disparate rebuttal.

      3. PM says:

        Well said Tom!!!!!!!

      4. Muriel says:

        Okay then Tom….then we as citizens of this great nation have the right to burn the koran down at ground zero on Saturday 9/11. Mayor Bloomberg agrees that citizens have a constitutional right to do this…show strength in numbers! Why not?

    2. calvin says:

      shut up

  46. Len says:

    By your logic many people throughout Africa, Asia and the Middle East could say these very things about white people and the havoc they have caused. Your logic is twisted and vile.

    1. Dan Te says:

      Ah, can’t debate facts and logic, so you resort to the time honor method of confusing disparate events.

      What you’re referring to is colonialism. That was practiced by ALL races. So it’s basically what goes around comes around.

      As to the evil I’m talking about, yes, religion is evil. Anything that justifies murdering people and raping little boys up the rear IS EVIL.

      Now let’s see you try to confuse the issue some more. You bleeding heart bone heads are good at that.

    2. Reality Check says:

      Len, guess who supplied slaves to the Europeans in Africa: The African tribal leaders, that’s who! Read up on it, then get back to us.

  47. nathan says:

    This really is a tough one and Im torn myself, as both a believer in freedom to worship and a NYer. Itd be best for all if a compromise could be reached and they could find a different site nearby.

    1. Tom says:

      LOL! Separation of church and state…that’s awesome, Dan.

      Maybe down on paper, yes. But how many Right-Wingers spout off how this is a “Christian Country” or that it was founded on Christian Principles?

      How many of them are angry that prayer/crosses/effigies to the 10 commandments do not adorn public schools?

      How many of them spend their waking days condemning gay rights because “God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve?”

      How many Right Wingers shout off how a woman should accept the baby they have growing inside of them due to a rape or incest because it’s “God’s Plan?”

      This country is FULL of radical religious nuts who can’t simply see that there are MANY ways to connect to God. And that there are some who choose — and have a right to — NOT to connect with God.

      You say that Islam is evil because it condones horrid treatment on ‘infidels?’ You know, it wasn’t all that long ago — just a few short centuries — when Christianity spread like wildfire across lands, forcing people to convert, or suffer physical torture if they didn’t. Spanish Inquisition, anyone? Or how about the Native Americans — forced to not only give up their lands, but to accept Jesus Christ as their savior?

      The fact of the matter is that Islam has an extremist side to it — a very dangerous one. Just as it has moderate and liberal sides. Just like Christianity, just like Judaism, and so on.

      Contrary to what you believe, not every single Muslim child is born with someone whispering in their ear “Now you grow up to be a good little terrorist.”

    2. Dan Te says:

      Hmm… I might not have been clear here, Tom. ALL religion that condones murdering people or raping little boys up the rear is just PLAIN EVIL!

      And there is no law in this land that allows that kind of evil freedom to “practice”. Except when you bleeding heart bone heads insist on it.

    3. Tom says:

      Oh…oh I see what you did there, Dan, using that old “Reading is Fundamental” tag-line and turning it into a snide quip.

      Oh yes, how clever. Bravo…no really, BRA-VO.

      Did I say anything about murderers walking around free? No. What I said was that not all Muslims are terrorists or seeking to destroy this country’s way of life.

      Just like I believe that not all Republicans are homophobic bible-thumpers who can’t wrap it around their heads that anyone other than a white male in his fifties to sixties can be president.

      However, YOUR comments, or at least what you’re suggesting indirectly, is that every single Muslim in the world is an evil terrorist mastermind, plotting to destroy our country.

      Or at the very least, all the Muslims should be punished for the actions of the nutcase extremists. Tell me, Dan: when a person goes to Jail for murder, do you punish his or her entire family for the individual’s actions? Do you spit on every German you see because of what their country did in WW2?

      Most rational people are able to separate the rational from the irrational. It’s clear that you were not born with ability.

    4. Shamshir Ghazali says:

      I understand that a mosque should not be built on a grave. I am sure ground zero is not a grave, but is there a possibility that somebody’s body is there and is still not found. Check out with the Saudi Religious Authority if building a mosque in such place is allowable in Islam.

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