Not a mosque, and not a good idea to oppose it

OK, just to be clear, and just to get the basics out of the way, no it is not a mosque.

It is a swimming pool, meeting room, game room, community center and more, with a prayer room. No matter what you have read elsewhere, it is NOT a mosque.

Second, it’s not at the 9-11 site in NYC. Not even all that close. Two city blocks. NYC blocks are smaller than Utah blocks, but still two blocks is two blocks. If I know downtown NYC, there are the usual number of bars, book stores, shops, strip joints and who knows what else, between it and the sacred 9-11 site.

Finally, and most important, all the screaming and yelling and calling muslims nazis (thanks Newt Gingrich!) and comparing New York to Mecca (Thanks Newt again) and general idiocy (Newt and a whole lot more) are really playing into the hands of the terrorists.

No, seriously. Muslim extremists say Americans hate all Muslims, not just the extremists, so, given the opportunity to show they are wrong, that we do respect Muslims who aren’t terrorists, what do we do?

Start an orgy of hate against all Muslims.

Don’t take my word for it. The FBI interrigator who was most successful getting information from terrorists, who probably knows their thinking best, says so. Read about it here: (click)

This joins a bevy of conservative commentators who have said the screaming about this building (NOT a mosque!) is unAmerican and simply wrong.

ps– a friend below posted a link to some of the other businesses also 2 blocks from Ground Zero. The Off Track betting parlor is a nice touch, and yes, there is a strip joint.

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50 Responses to Not a mosque, and not a good idea to oppose it

  1. Jim Hutchins says:

    This blog has collected photos of things that are the same distance from the WTC site as the “mosque”:

    http://bit.ly/avM67E

  2. Kris Thompson says:

    Yeah, Charles, it’s a mess–I’ve had to take a few days off from the battle because the racism is brutal out there, the logic is sadly lacking, and it’s not just from the right.

    The older I get, the more I lean toward the sad conclusion that Americans really do seem to NEED to hate someone. Mexicans, Muslims, homosexuals, Catholics–it doesn’t matter who, just so long there’s some group to vilify and demonize.

  3. Kris Thompson says:

    Thanks, Jim–that’s a good one.

  4. Bob Becker says:

    Actually, it’s a little more than two blocks from the nearest part of the Ground Zero site, and its around a corner down a side street. The building will be not visible from any portion of the Ground Zero site, and is about five blocks from the planned site of the Ground Zero memorial which will be built provided the city, sponsors, donors spokespersons for the survivors’ families can stop feuding over the design.

    Not a mosque. Not at Ground Zero. Not visible from Ground Zero.

    By the way, today’s editorial in the Standard Examiner was, I thought, excellent but for using the term “Ground Zero Mosque.” Other than that, it was first rate. I especially liked the final line.

  5. CB says:

    Raise your hand if you think the Mormons would be jerks if they decided to build a huge LDS cultural center in the heart of San Francisco (even if they have a right to). If the GLBT community protested or made any noise to the effect that they didn’t want it there, would we call them “bigots?” I guess we’d have to. Come to think of it, I know people who love all the Muslims but hate all the Mormons… no one ever calls them bigots, in fact they are considered “tolerant.” Odd.

  6. Tom says:

    Great piece Mr. T.

    But as usual you make way too much sense for the stupid people who are keeping this nonsense alive.

  7. laytonian says:

    The people who work and live IN that area, think the complaints against Park51 are silly…or worse. Especially the strippers, OTB bettors, bums on the street…………

    From the Wall Street Journal:
    http://snurl.com/10qm0h

  8. charlie, thats’s beautiful. Did you see the Neologism Awards in the Wash. Post provided courtesy of Mensa. the idea is that you change one letter from any word in the dictionary and then supply the new meaning. My fave, ” Bozone ( n.) The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating “. For example of bright idea, demonstrating to all non-radical Muslims everywhere that Americans really don’t hate all Muslims by showing tolerance for the construction of their “non-Mosque ‘ 2 blocks away from the former WTC. Continuing with the definition of “bozone”, “The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future.”

  9. M. Lococo says:

    “OK, just to be clear, and just to get the basics out of the way, no it is not a mosque… It is a swimming pool, meeting room, game room, community center and more, with a prayer room. No matter what you have read elsewhere, it is NOT a mosque.”

    Charlie If this is the case, you might want to correct: Barak Obama, Senator Harry Reid, ABC, CNN etc. who are all referring to this building as a “mosque.” In both President Obama’s statements at the Muslim dinner at the White House, and his later backtracking on his support for this building, he called it a mosque.

    “Second, it’s not at the 9-11 site in NYC. Not even all that close. Two city blocks.”

    Charlie, it’s too close for a majority of New Yorkers, and a majority of Americans. CNN did a recent poll and found that 70% of Americans are against this mosque being located at this site. And if as you say: “It’s a swimming pool, meeting room, game room, community center and more, with a prayer room” and NOT a mosque, what’s the big deal? This is an issue of sensitivity for not only the victims of 9/11, but Americans in general. Why is it you aren’t calling on Muslims and this Imam to show sensitivity to the victims on this issue? You’re willing to chastise the true victims of this crime, and side with Muslims who want to build a “community center?” Are you aware that NYC has about 30 mosques? Americans and New Yorkers aren’t racists; they just don’t want this mosque near this hallowed ground.

    Charlie, why don’t you man up and demand that Muslims let a Christian Church or a Synagogue be built in Mecca? The answer is simple; like all Liberals, you haven’t the guts to challenge these radicals.

    “Finally, and most important, all the screaming and yelling and calling muslims nazis (thanks Newt Gingrich!) and comparing New York to Mecca (Thanks Newt again) and general idiocy (Newt and a whole lot more) are really playing into the hands of the terrorists.”

    I find it very interesting that you chided former Speaker Gingrich’s opposition to this mosque, while completely ignoring several Democrats views on this mosque:

    Sen. Reid’s office stated that: “The First Amendment protects freedom of religion. Senator Reid respects that, but thinks that the mosque should be built someplace else.” Several other New York Democrat Representatives also are against this mosque. Representative Mike McMahon said: “We have seen very clearly in the past weeks that building a mosque two blocks from Ground Zero will not promote necessary interfaith dialogue, but will continue to fracture the faiths and citizens of our City and this Country.”

    It doesn’t matter the issue, Liberals can always be counted on to take the warped side of it. You’ll decry a mass murders execution as barbaric, while giving thunderous applause for a women’s right to murder her innocent, unborn child; you’ll ridicule and mock Christians as intolerant, homophobic rubes, while ignoring the oppressive and deadly treatment of women and homosexuals by the Muslim religion; and in the case of this mosque; instead of asking those who’s religion guided the 9/11 attacks to try and understand the victims sensitivity, you instead ask the victims and this nation to reach out and allow this “victory Mosque” to be built in order to show Muslims that we’re “really not that bad.”

  10. Chris says:

    M. Lococo said, “why don’t you man up and demand that Muslims let a Christian Church or a Synagogue be built in Mecca?”

    Yeah, I mean, why should America be any better than Saudi Arabia?

    So if a group of Christians decided to bomb a building in Salt Lake City – in the name of God – how far away would you like future Christian churches to be built? (out of sensitivity to all those who blame Christians for the act, of course)

  11. Michael Trujillo says:

    Lococo uses all of the same, old, tired arguments of the people who call themselves conservatives. Yaaaaawwwwnnnnnn!

    FYI, Locoocoo, they have been asked. And they’re still planning to do it. Last time I checked, if something’s not illegal or against the building codes, it’s OK to build something even when your neighbors complain. Being a jerk is not against the law. Whether or not it’s insensitive to build this structure, it is the owner’s right to build it. If we could stop things from being built simply because we didn’t like them, I can think of a whole bunch of buildings that I’d vote against. Unfortunately, I don’t get to impose my personal sense of architecture, style, purpose, or indigantion on others. And neither do you. If the government can prevent this building, what’s next? Your church?

  12. M. Lococo says:

    Chris said: “Yeah, I mean, why should America be any better than Saudi Arabia?”

    First off, my primary concern is not what oppressive cultures and religions think of the United States. My primary concern is that the issue of this mosque being built in an area where thousands of Americans lost their lives, is an affront to not only the victims and their families, but Americans in general. CNN’s poll indicates about 70% of Americans oppose this mosque at its current location.

    By-the-way, I already think America is “better” than Saudi Arabia. Consider this: there are about 30 mosques in New York City, and NO Christian Churches in Saudi Arabia! So, your contention that we must prove ourselves better than this country and its culture is a moot point.

    Chris, why is it Americans are always the ones that must “reach out” to others? If the Muslims in this instance are truly concerned about building a bridge of understanding, why do they continue to push this mosque being built in this location, when they know the pain it’s causing the victim’s families, and Americans? Why is it incumbent on the “victims” to reach out? Why is it that you and others don’t ask Muslims to be sensitive to the victims in this case?

    “So if a group of Christians decided to bomb a building in Salt Lake City – in the name of God – how far away would you like future Christian churches to be built? (out of sensitivity to all those who blame Christians for the act, of course)”

    First off, Christians and Jews don’t make it their habit to engage in terrorism and bombings (Sadly, a fair segment of those who practice Islam do). However, if per chance they did, I guess they would have to be understanding if folks had a problem with the location of such a building. Secondly, these people DO have a legal right to build this mosque…that’s not in dispute. The request that it not be built is out of sensitivity and decency towards the victim’s families and Americans in general. Again, if the Muslim community is eager to build unity with us, why are they pushing for this mosque to be built in this location…and why is it Liberals in this country will not challenge them to make the concession here?

    As an aside:

    My comment to Charles about “manning up”, and asking him to demand that churches and synagogues be allowed to be built in Mecca, was in part due to his sophomoric criticism of Newt Gingrich’s comparison of Ground Zero to Mecca, but more importantly, was to draw two observations about Liberals: 1) They’re cowards, and 2) They’re hypocrites.

    Liberals, who purport to be for the “little guy,” are very brave and open in their ridicule and contempt of Christians. We’re told by Liberals that we’re: judgmental, bigots, Homophobes, intolerant of women’s rights, oppressive, and backwards in our thinking. But what about Muslims practicing their brand of religion…do we hear any criticism from the all caring and concerned Liberals? NOPE!

    Consider this: Women in the Muslim religion can be executed and mutilated if THEY ARE RAPED, homosexuals can be put to death, and parents can perform honor killings on their children should they dishonor them. But even with this, Liberals do not use this occasion to speak of the atrocities in the Muslim religion. No, they instead lecture the “victims” and Americans to show good will to the Muslim Community!

    This begs the question: how can Liberals be so vocal in their opposition to Christianity, and yet remain silent on the brutality committed against women and homosexuals by segments of the Muslim religion? The answer is simple: F-E-A-R. Think of it: this is a great opportunity for liberals (The ones who boldly stand up to Christianity); to use this time to demand that Muslims reform their religion and human rights violations. Sadly, their fear and utter hypocrisy have found them once again going against America and the true victims.

    Come on Charles…prove me wrong! ;-)

  13. Al says:

    I think that Senator Merkley’s comments on this are quite good: http://www.oregonlive.com/opinion/index.ssf/2010/08/mosque_dont_blame_friends_for.html

    Nearly everyone in this debate affirms the constitutional right for the mosque’s construction. Indeed, that right is a cherished founding principle. As Thomas Jefferson said, “The constitutional freedom of religion [is] the most inalienable and sacred of all human rights.” It is no accident that the right to worship in accordance with one’s own conscience is enshrined in the First Amendment.

    But, many mosque opponents argue, just because it can be built does not mean it should be. They say it would be disrespectful to the memories of those who died on 9/11 to build a Muslim facility near the World Trade Center site. I appreciate the depth of emotions at play, but respectfully suggest that the presence of a mosque is only inappropriate near ground zero if we unfairly associate Muslim Americans with the atrocities of the foreign al-Qaida terrorists who attacked our nation.

    Such an association is a profound error. Muslim Americans are our fellow citizens, not our enemies. Muslim Americans were among the victims who died at the World Trade Center in the 9/11 attacks. Muslim American first responders risked their lives to save their fellow citizens that day. Many of our Muslim neighbors, including thousands of Oregon citizens, serve our country in war zones abroad and our communities at home with dedication and distinction.

  14. American says:

    It IS a mosque you liberal moron. Answer this:

    Why is it a good idea to build a fancy new mosque just two blocks from the site of an act of mass murder that was committed in the name of Islam?

  15. Bill says:

    (I think we should demand that Davis County build a hookah bar in that case. Or even better, lets put a Mosque on that vacant spot next to the temple in Ogden. I bet that would go over well.)
    You see, it is not Our decision to make unless it is our community. Am I wrong? Think about it. It is not about freedom of religion. It is about secular security. It must be as frustrating for truly peaceful Muslims being associated with Al Quaida or the Taliban as it is for me (a vegan) being automatically associated with PETA or the ALF. I do not like that. Because to me it is the same thing. It is a very perplexing issue to say the least. To call someone a bigot because they are concerned for their lives is irrational. In the case of the Catholic church; some nuns had intended to build an abbey at Auschwitz. No body liked that. So, rather than demand that they have a right to put it there in the name of their religion, they chose to move the abbey. Did they wimp out? or did they exhibit tolerance, peace and understanding?
    It is not anyone’s decision but NYC. That is my opinion.

  16. Bob Becker says:

    American:

    Here’s why: From Sen. Merkely’s comments above:

    that the presence of a mosque is only inappropriate near ground zero if we unfairly associate Muslim Americans with the atrocities of the foreign al-Qaida terrorists who attacked our nation. Such an association is a profound error. Muslim Americans are our fellow citizens, not our enemies. Muslim Americans were among the victims who died at the World Trade Center in the 9/11 attacks. Muslim American first responders risked their lives to save their fellow citizens that day. Many of our Muslim neighbors, including thousands of Oregon citizens, serve our country in war zones abroad and our communities at home with dedication and distinction.

    And here’s why, from the Foreign Policy Director of the Cato Institute [a conservative think tank in DC]:

    This strategy, exploiting still-raw emotion and implicitly demonizing Muslims, threatens to trade short-term political gain for medium-term political harm to the party. And it most certainly will translate into long-term harm for the country at large.
    Opposing the construction of a mosque near the Ground Zero site plays into al Qaeda’s narrative that the United States is engaged in a war with Islam, that bin Laden and his tiny band of followers represent something more than a pitiful group of murderers and thugs, and that all American Muslims are an incipient Fifth Column that must be either converted to Christianity or driven out of the country, else they will undermine American society from within.

    And here’s why, from other Republican and Conservative sources:

    A number of public officials and commentators, not all of them Obama supporters, have staked out a position that walks this country back from that precipice. NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s courageous and eloquent statementon this issue should be read by all, not just Republicans. But Bloomberg is unlikely to swing opinion within the GOP base. So too with Fareed Zakaria, who nonetheless deserves enormous credit for distancing himself from any organization that would adopt a public position of thinly veiled bigotry, especially one whose mission is “to put an end forever to unjust and unfair discrimination against and ridicule of any sect or body of citizens.” Dan Drezner’s take is aimed squarely at right-of-center readers, and sprinkled with a tone of sarcasm; but he is a pointy-headed intellectual, so he’ll have a hard time convincing the most skeptical of the lot.
    A more convincing spokesman for sensible voices on the Right is former Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson, who wisely opposes a short-sighted and cynical political strategy to exploit anti-Muslim sentiments. Likewise, Mark Halperin recognizes the political salience of an anti-mosque stance, but advises party leaders to steer clearof that position. Josh Barro at National Review Online renders a devastating refutation of all the dubious arguments erected to block the mosque.

    Indeed, George W. Bush himself set the tone in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 atrocities, counseling against retaliation against innocent Muslims who had nothing to do with the attacks, and noting that a number of Muslims were killed on 9/11. Other conservative organizations and institutions took notice of Bush’s leadership, and wisely sacked the few voices who preached violence against all Muslims because nineteen of their coreligionists had perpetrated the attacks.

    Not quite nine years later, we’ve come full-circle. With Bush enjoying retirement in Texas, who within the GOP will affirm the party’s position that declaring a war on Islam does not advance our nation’s security?

    And here’s why, from an article by Randy Balko about just how un-radical American Muslims are::

    One thing that seems to be overlooked in this Manhattan mosque/activity center scuffle and the broader debate over integration and assimilation is just how well Muslim immigrants have done in the U.S. We don’t have the Muslim ghettos, separatist movements, rioting, and the tense cultural clashes Europe has. There have been some arrests of alleged home-grown Islamic terrorists in America, but there are going to be extremist outliers in any ethnic, religious, or ideological group of 3 million people (the estimated number number of Muslims in the U.S.).

    In contrast to many of the minority Muslim populations in Europe, American Muslims embrace modernity, are better educated, and earn more money than their non-Muslim fellow citizens. A 2007 Pew poll suggests American Muslims are also doing just fine when it comes to assimilating and viewing themselves as part of America. According to the poll, just 5 percent of American Muslims express any level of support for Al Qaeda, and strong majorities condemn suicide attacks for any reason (80+ percent), and have a generally positive image of America and its promise for Muslims.

    According to the poll, the only subset of American Muslims where support for Al Qaeda and suicide attacks gets unccomfortably high is among native-born African-American converts, many of whom converted in prison. To the extent that this particular subset of American Muslims is more prone to radicalism and less optimistic about America, it has nothing to do with immigration/assimilation problems, and seems more likely to stem from lingering hostility about race. That is, it’s an American problem, not a Muslim problem.

    I’m not an immigration expert, so I’m not going to pretend I know everything that factored into it, but it’s worth repeating that the story of Muslim immigrants in America over the last two generations is unquestionably a success story. There’s the temptation to caution that all of the demagoguery and marginalization of Muslims over the Cordoba Center threatens that success, and could shake loose more potent factions of European-style Muslim radicalism in America. But the Pew poll suggests the overwhelming majority of American Muslims held to their sense of place in U.S. society even after September 11 and its immediate aftermath. It’s worth condemning the “Ground Zero Mosque” demagoguery for the naked pandering to fear that it is. But the good news is that Muslim Americans appear to be confident enough with their position here that the escalating hysterics of Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, & Co. aren’t likely to budge their general optimism about America. [Link to the Balko piece: http://reason.com/blog/2010/08/17/the-american-muslim-success-st ]

    Well, [alleged] American, you asked….

  17. Bob Becker says:

    An Apology:

    People post under pseudonyms and so it is impossible to know if they are who their pseudonyms suggest they are. Thus they can claim to be things in their pseudonyms that they are not. Nevertheless, because I had and have no idea who “American” above is or might be, I should not have used “alleged” in my reply to him above, and I apologize for it.

  18. ctrentelman says:

    geeze people — chill out.

    lococo — why should I “man up” about anything? A majority of New Yorkers liking or disliking something has nothing to do with it — you don’t put rights to a vote. If we did, nobody’s would be safe because everyone, including you, is in the minority at one time or another.

    As to Obama et al calling it a mosque — no, they should not. They are wrong. They are buying into media hype just like everyone else, including you.

    As to demanding that Saudi Arabia et al build Christian or Jewish churches, why should I? I don’t give a rat’s patoot what they think we should do, why should I try to tell them what to do? It is their country — If I can tell them what to build, they can tell us. Gingrich’s proposal would lower us to their level, and I have no desire to live in a country like Saudi Arabia — I know a guy who did for a while and he couldn’t get out fast enough.

    Frank Rich at the NYTimes, and several others, have pointed out that the anti-muslim hysteria being stirred up by you and many others on this issue is precisely what Osama Bin Laddyboy wants — OBLcan scream to all who will listen that “Americans hate all Muslims!”

    and, from what I can see, in large measure, he is right.

  19. laytonian says:

    No need to apologize, Bob.

    It’s the pattern of the right-wing to subserve screen names such as “American”, “Patriot”, “Truth” and other insinuatingly-smarmy nyms that infer everyone else is a commie-pinko.

    AND….there’s especially no need to apologize to someone whose main argument is that everyone else is a “moron”.

    Don’t apologize. Just feel pity. I do.

  20. laytonian says:

    Charlie, you’re right.

    This is playing right into the hands of the low-information voter crowd — and is just another perfectly-timed .blow-up by the right wing to deflate the achievements of our current administration.

    As for 9/11 being solely an Islamic-based attack, it seems bin Laden himself would differ:

    “”Allah knows it did not cross our minds to attack the towers but after the situation became unbearable and we witnessed the injustice and tyranny of the American-Israeli alliance against our people in Palestine and Lebanon, I thought about it. ”

    Frankly, bin Laden’s nothing more than a well-funded gangster getting his jollies by tying the world up in knots…and watching his little followers obey his commands.

    I think he’s been dead for years.

  21. Michael Trujillo says:

    Lococo, the fact that you actually typed, “…Christians and Jews don’t make it their habit to engage in terrorism and bombings.” proves that you don’t know what you’re talking about. If you can make such a verifiably wrong comment, how can anything else you say be taken seriously?

  22. Bob Becker says:

    Occasionally on the Ranting Right on this issue, someone suggests the federal or state government ought to use eminent domain proceedings to seize the Park 51 project site to prevent its being built. Why that would be a very bad idea from the point of view of conservative legal principles, and why it would be very nearly impossible in any case [legally or financially] is discussed here by Ilya Somin, a legal scholar and strongly conservative property rights advocate: http://volokh.com/2010/08/23/property-rights-eminent-domain-and-the-ground-zero-mosque/

  23. Bob Becker says:

    On the point that all this rabid anti-Moslem rhetoric coming from demagogues like Gingrich etc. is damaging, and dangerous, to the US, it’s people and its armed forces, this from today’s NY Times:

    Some counterterrorism experts say the anti-Muslim sentiment that has saturated the airwaves and blogs in the debate over plans for an Islamic center near ground zero in Lower Manhattan is playing into the hands of extremists by bolstering their claims that the United States is hostile to Islam. Opposition to the center by prominent politicians and other public figures in the United States has been covered extensively by the news media in Muslim countries. At a time of concern about radicalization of young Muslims in the West, it risks adding new fuel to Al Qaeda’s claim that Islam is under attack by the West and must be defended with violence, some specialists on Islamic militancy say.

    \I know people in this debate don’t intend it, but there are consequences for these kinds of remarks,\ said Brian Fishman, who studies terrorism for the New America Foundation here. He said that Anwar al-Awlaki, an American-born cleric hiding in Yemen who has been linked to several terrorist plots, has been arguing for months in Web speeches and in a new Qaeda magazine that American Muslims face a dark future of ever-worsening discrimination and vilification. \When the rhetoric is so inflammatory that it serves the interests of a jihadi recruiter like Awlaki, politicians need to be called on it,\ Mr. Fishman said.

    Evan F. Kohlmann, who tracks militant Web sites at the security consulting firm Flashpoint Global Partners, said supporters of Al Qaeda have seized on the controversy \with glee.\ On radical Web forums, he said, the dispute over the Islamic center, which would include space for worship, is lumped together with fringe developments like a Florida pastor’s call for making Sept. 11 \Burn a Koran Day.\ \It’s seen as proof of what Awlaki and others have been saying, that the U.S. is hypocritical and that most Americans are enemies of Islam,\ Mr. Kohlmann said. He called the anti-Islam statements spawned by the dispute \disturbing and sad\ and said they were feeding anti-American sentiment that could provoke violence…

    Dalia Mogahed of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies said the outcry over the proposed center \plays into Awlaki’s arguments and Osama bin Laden’s arguments\ by suggesting that Islam has no place in the United States. She said that extreme anti-Muslim views in the United States ironically mirror a central tenet of extreme Islamists: \That the world is divided into two camps, and they’re irreconcilable, and Muslims have to choose which side they’re on.\

    The full article can be found here: http://scienceblogs.com/dispatches/2010/08/evidence_that_anti-mosque_sent.php#more

  24. CB says:

    Hey Bob… this kind of smacks of fear mongering itself. We can’t oppose the cultural center now because we’re afraid it will make the Muslims in other countries think we hate them? Oh please. Let’s make sure we give everyone, everything they want, when and where they want it… so that nobody thinks we hate them. My kids would be in sorry shape today if I held that attitude and even my 3- year old grand-tot is more mature than this.

    When the people in some of those nations were dancing in the streets after 911 and when Al Quaeda supporters call the terrorists “Glorious” – do you think they’re worried about what we think? Do we think they (people who celebrate terrorism) hate us? We should because they do. Maybe we should be more concerned with that. We don’t have to hate them in return (in fact I advocate against all hatred)… but we should be concerned. And being concerned doesn’t make us “haters.”

    Sounds to me like the Al Quaeda are using the same fear tactics on American Muslims as Newt and his ilk are trying to use on others. I’ve no problem with calling them out the same as the rest.

  25. M. Lococo says:

    CB said:

    When the people in some of those nations were dancing in the streets after 911 and when Al Quaeda supporters call the terrorists “Glorious” – do you think they’re worried about what we think? Do we think they (people who celebrate terrorism) hate us? We should because they do. Maybe we should be more concerned with that. We don’t have to hate them in return (in fact I advocate against all hatred)… but we should be concerned. And being concerned doesn’t make us “haters.”
    ____________________________________________________

    You make an excellent observation here.

    But this really shouldn’t surprise anyone. Liberals work off of the premise that “America Sucks” and is responsible for all the world’s problems. Liberals to this day find it hard to blame the terrorists for the 9/11 attacks (carried out in the name of Islam). I mean after all, we must have provoked them somehow…right? Is it any wonder that they don’t demand understanding and sensitivity from this Imam and the NYC Muslim Community to have this mosque moved further away? No, once again, the onus must be on the “victims” and America to understand Muslims. It seems to me if the Muslim Community were really serious about reaching out to others; they would understand the pain of the victims and move this mosque away from Ground Zero.

    This controversy shows another important truth that cannot be denied: Liberals care nothing of human rights and equality. If they did, they would’ve of used this opportunity to demand that Islam cease in their brutality towards women, homosexuals, and those who don’t believe in Islam. If Liberals could only muster the same courage to speak out against some of the practices of Islam, as they do Christianity…

  26. Bob Becker says:

    Ah, of course. Yet another right-winger who thinks he knows “what liberals think.” This from ML above:

    “But this really shouldn’t surprise anyone. Liberals work off of the premise that “America Sucks” and is responsible for all the world’s problems. Liberals to this day find it hard to blame the terrorists for the 9/11 attacks. And ” Liberals care nothing of human rights and equality.”

    Well, I’m a card-carrying New Deal Democratic liberal. And I know a lot of liberals in a lot of places and in several different states, and many right here in Zion. Honest I do! And not only does ML’s claim about “what liberals think” not describe anything I believe, not a single liberal I know [and again, I know a lot of them] believes those things or anything like them either. The liberals ML describes live, I’m afraid, only in his fevered paranoid imagination.

  27. CB says:

    I am a liberal (goo-goo-gajoob ;) )… that is why I can’t care what the Al Quaeda and other radical Muslims think of us right now. We know what they think of us (as free people, educated women who have the nerve to work alongside men, LGBT and people who love them, creatives and intellectuals). If the taliban had their way, we’d be the first ones against the wall – don’t kid yourself. They are projecting their hatred onto us. They can keep it – and I’ll keep my freedom of speech

    I will say too as a liberal, I’m all for human rights… I think America is a beautiful place. We’re allowed to say (out loud) that this building in this place just might not be the best idea. Aren’t we? Don’t be too eager fall into their bullying techniques by calling everyone a hater for saying it.

  28. Bob Becker says:

    CB:

    Al Queda and the Taliban are declared enemies. No one is concerned about what they think about Park 51 or what the Newt Gingriches and his aiders and abettors on the Right are saying about it. It’s Muslims who have not joined the radicals in their violent hatred of the US we have to be concerned about. Their opinions do matter to us, or should, because if they become convinced the US is “the enemy of Islam” — all of Islam — more of them are likely to choose violence in defense of their faith.

    What Ossma Bin Laden thinks about us worries me not at all. What Ali In The Street Muslim in Europe or Asia or Africa or the US thinks does matter a lot to me. And it should to all of us, because it is dangerous, I think, for the Gingrichs and others, recognized leaders in the Republican Party, to engage in the kind of demagoguery they’ve been practicing. Telling a non-radical Muslim that some nut-job fundamentalist preacher in the Bible Belt is holding a “Burn a Koran Day” is one thing. Telling him that Newt Gingrich, major Republican leader, former Speaker of the House and putative Republican candidate for the Presidency cannot distinguish between Muslim terrorists and Muslims, even American Muslims, who are not terrorists is quite another.

    If we ever get to the point where all, or even most, of the 1.6 billion Muslims in the world are convinced that the United States is engaged in a Christian Crusade to destroy their faith and them, the number of American service men and women, and civilians, who will die will I’m afraid rise dramatically in the ensuing carnage. And that’s where Gingrich and company seem to be taking us by their demagoguery about Park 51, and all to win votes on election day. Not patriotic in my book.

  29. M. Lococo says:

    CB said:

    “It’s Muslims who have not joined the radicals in their violent hatred of the US we have to be concerned about. Their opinions do matter to us, or should, because if they become convinced the US is “the enemy of Islam” — all of Islam — more of them are likely to choose violence in defense of their faith.”

    “What Ossma Bin Laden thinks about us worries me not at all. What Ali In The Street Muslim in Europe or Asia or Africa or the US thinks does matter a lot to me.”
    _________________________________________________________________________________________

    You simply cannot make this stuff up! This is the first time in my life that I’ve ever seen Liberals care what a religion thinks of them. So, I guess the normal protesting and disgust that Liberals feel for Christianity and Judaism, does not apply to the Muslim faith because, “they might get really mad at us?” You make the point better than I ever could about how you as a Liberal really feel about Muslims…YOU FEAR THEM, and their proclivity towards violence. So in essence, you really don’t see Islam as moderate, or a “religion of peace?”

    CB said:

    “If we ever get to the point where all, or even most, of the 1.6 billion Muslims in the world are convinced that the United States is engaged in a Christian Crusade to destroy their faith and them, the number of American service men and women, and civilians, who will die will I’m afraid rise dramatically in the ensuing carnage. And that’s where Gingrich and company seem to be taking us by their demagoguery about Park 51, and all to win votes on election day. Not patriotic in my book.”
    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    OK, let me see if I get this: There are 1.6 Billion Muslims in the world (about a quarter of the earth’s population), and you fear that: 1) Muslim’s feel like a discriminated minority group and 2) there will be a “Christian Crusade to destroy their faith and them.” Wow…just wow!

    It’s also telling that you had to remind folks once again that Islam really isn’t a religion of peace, but when provoked will unleash “carnage” on Americans. Who would’ve thunk it?

    This really begs the question though: Why isn’t this deference and understanding never offered to Christianity and Judaism?

    The hypocrisy currently on display from Liberals is amazing to watch. And you guys wonder why a majority of Americans classify themselves as conservative. ;-)

  30. M. Lococo says:

    Please forgive my last post…I mistakenly indicated quotes from “CB.” It should’ve been quoted to “Bob B.”

    Sorry for the error! :-)

  31. Al says:

    M. Lococo keeps writing things like “So, I guess the normal protesting and disgust that Liberals feel for Christianity and Judaism…”

    But I’m baffled. Perhaps I’m not on the right Liberal Mailing Lists, because, as Bob has previously noted, you keep saying things about liberals that seem informed by nothing but bad movie plots (Now in Technicolor: LIBERALS!). I’m not aware of a great liberal history of disgust for Christianity and Judaism, thought I would be happy to read your evidence of this. Rather, the liberal ideals that I am familiar with (to the extent that they intersect with religion at all; most are rather secular, or, at most, informed by a religiously-informed theme of social justice so impugned by guys like Glenn Beck) are critical of power used unjustly, the exploitation of suffering and inequality, the commission of inhumane acts in the name of one religious ideal or another. In my experience and indeed as history suggests, these problems are not limited to any single faith.

    Liberals turn a blind eye to crimes committed in the name of Islam? Hardly. I recall my liberal circle of acquaintances being horrified by the Taliban’s destruction of buddhist idols in Afghanistan, for example, long before the U.S. became engaged in that nation. I know of many NGOs who would call themselves liberal working in places like Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan to do things like preserve access to education for women and stop “honor” killings and stonings. Frankly I have no idea why you keep asserting that liberals don’t care about these things; the very human rights projects that have historically driven these works are, fundamentally, _liberal_, and the only way to overlook that, as far as I can understand, is to be deliberately obtuse, or determined to associate Islam with acts committed in its name without making the same blase generalization about other faiths. Or maybe just so blind to the actual politics of liberals that one is unable to believe anything else about them. Either way, it’s wrongheaded enough to be humorous, if you didn’t seem to committed to such harmful nonsense.

  32. Owain says:

    Al said, “Perhaps I’m not on the right Liberal Mailing Lists, because, as Bob has previously noted, you keep saying things about liberals that seem informed by nothing but bad movie plots (Now in Technicolor: LIBERALS!). I’m not aware of a great liberal history of disgust for Christianity and Judaism, thought I would be happy to read your evidence of this. ”

    Coincidentally, I just happened upon this item today. I’m sure it wouldn’t require a significant command of Google to come up with further examples.

    http://gatewaypundit.firstthings.com/2010/08/the-lefts-newfound-respect-for-freedom-of-religion/

  33. Al says:

    Owain: A radical rightwing blogger accusing liberals of hypocrisy by making the same argument as Lococo is pretty uninteresting and not persuasive. But it does raise a useful question: Why does the defense of a constitutional principle — one written by men who are constantly claimed as deeply religious — amount to hostility to religion? I know plenty of people who are both very religious and who also believe deeply in the separation of church and state as a means to protect religious freedom and so would oppose even the implied endorsement of a sect by the government. It is a serious twisting of their intent to read that as hostility to religion or a desire to eliminate religion from public (i.e. non-state-sanctioned) life, and an unwarranted generalization to even apply that motive to liberals in general. And note that counter to the villainous accusations against them, it is often the ACLU that defends rights to private worship in public places. Unlike an awful lot of self-called constitutionalists, they believe in civil liberties for all people.

  34. Owain says:

    Separation of church and state (which isn’t in the constitution anyway, to my knowledge) doesn’t require exclusion of religion symbols. Locally, this subject has come up just recently with the court decision regarding crosses to mark the locations where Utah Highway patrol officers have made the ultimate sacrifice.

    There is a constitutional prohibition in the 1st Amendment against the government establishment of an official religion (“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion…”), which, in my opinion, has been perverted to the current separation of church and state that mention. The establishement clause, rather than being used to ensure freedom of relgion, has been twisted to be used as a club by those who want freedom from religion.

  35. CB says:

    Bob-

    I think we need to give due credit to the peaceful muslims in the world not to assume that we “hate” them just because some people would like them to build the P51 project somewhere else. As everyone keeps saying, they were horrified by 911 too… I have even seen and heard commentary by some of them acknowledging that GZ is not the most sensitive place for that building. This isn’t a crusade against Islam and I think sensible people know that, regardless of what the likes of Gingrich say. Asking someone to build a little further off, and working with them to find a location that does rile any fresh wounds is NOT hatred.

    As I alluded to earlier, if not giving them everything they want all the time when/where they want it has to be construed as “hatefulness” then there won’t be any appeasing them in our culture. It is give and take in the US, compromises sometimes have to be reached to keep the peace. Diversity only works where there is mutual respect.

    In the places where the extremists hold the most sway, the media are censored to the point where no matter what our discussion is, the people there will never see both sides of it. Those who can… hopefully will understand. In fact I thin it’s more than a little condescending to think they won’t or can’t.

    Please note, I’m neither for or against any specific building. What I really object to is the automatic labeling of people as “haters” and “bigots” if they happen to recognize the miserable failure of our government to protect us from terrorist attacks, and have some concerns about P51. I have the utmost confidence that New Yorkers can and will work this out for themselves.

  36. Owain says:

    This is an old blog post, but the story continues to develop.

    In a recent CBS poll, 71% of Americans now believe that the “Ground Zero Mosque” is a mistake. (the CBS poll used the term ‘mosque’, not me, so maybe they know something Trentelman doesn’t).

    Charles said, “Finally, and most important, all the screaming and yelling and calling muslims nazis (thanks Newt Gingrich!) and comparing New York to Mecca (Thanks Newt again) and general idiocy (Newt and a whole lot more) are really playing into the hands of the terrorists.”

    Wow! Who knew that Newt was still so influential? Still, sounds like he as 71% of the country agreeing with him, so there you go.

  37. ctrentelman says:

    owain, being married to a sociologist, I know very well that polls have to be very carefully crafted to get results that are valid, and the most critical part of that is how the questions are written.

    if cbs said it was the “mosque at ground zero,” then cbs has a worthless poll. It was polling people’s popular perception, not the fact of the matter.

    and, anyway, if 71 percent of American’s think Owain’s right to decide what to do with his own property (within zoning laws) ought to be ignored, are you OK with that? How about your right to freedom of speech? Or your right to own a gun?

  38. Owain says:

    If you look at the same poll (but obvously you didn’t, since it might confound your preconceptions), you will also see that a majority of people think that the developers are within their rights to build there. So you are dead wrong when you say that I, or 71% of American’s are trying to dictate what they do with their own property. But nice try. It’s not like it’s the first time you have demonstrated you don’t have a clue.

    A majority of people, according to the poll, think the developers are within their rights to build there. They just think it’s a bad idea. Clear?

    While we are on the subject of Trentelman intentional distortions, you said, “Finally, and most important, all the screaming and yelling and calling muslims nazis (thanks Newt Gingrich!) …”

    You really need to figure out how this whole blog thing works. As I understand it, when a blogger makes an inflamatory statement like that, it’s customary to include a link that verifies the statement, so the reader can tell if you are blowing smoke or not. As it happen, no, Newt didn’t call muslims Nazi’s. What he said was, “Nazi’s don’t have a right to put up a sign next to the Holocaust museum in Washington…” In literary terms, that’s known as a COMPARISON. This thing is LIKE that thing, not this thing IS that thing. Look it up.

    So, how would a competant blogger handle this? Here’s an example: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noel-sheppard/2010/08/22/robert-reich-accuses-newt-gingrich-saying-muslims-are-nazis

    Not that the blogger includes a full quote to give readers the proper context:

    “Nazis don’t have the right to put up a sign next to the Holocaust Museum in Washington. We would never accept the Japanese putting up a site next to Pearl Harbor.”

    That assumes, of course, that you don’t mean to intentionally mislead your readers.

  39. M. Lococo says:

    Owain, your previous post was well stated and very succinct!

    Newsbusters is a great site!

  40. Owain says:

    M. Lococo – thanks for the compliment. I have a final post (awaiting moderation, it seems) that conclusivly answers the “Is it a mosque or isn’t it” question. We’ll see if Trentelman sees fit to post a retraction.

  41. Charles Trentelman says:

    not sure what you mean by “awaiting moderation.” I have no control over these posts. I do not decide which ones run and which ones don’t.

    ct

  42. Owain says:

    When I bring up the comments in this section, I have a post that begins “Here is a link to an interview with sharif el-Gamal, the lead developer of the Park 51 project, AKA the ground zero mosque…”)
    There is a system note prefacing that post reads “Your comment is awaiting moderation.”

    I took that to mean that the comment system is smart enough to know that I submitted that comment, so I can see it, but no one else can until someone(?) moderates it and approves the post for everyone to see. I also assumed that the post had to be moderated because I included a couple of links to other web sites that had to be checked to make sure I wasn’t embedding anything malicious into my post.

    If you don’t know anything about that, check with your web site administrators to see what is going on here.

  43. Owain says:

    Ever find out anything on the ‘awaiting moderation’ thing?

    In the meantime, I’ll cut and paste part of the entry, disguising the moderation triggering link.

    Here is an interview with sharif el-Gamal, the lead developer of the Park 51 project, AKA the ground zero mosque (blog-dot-beliefnet-dot-com/cityofbrass/2010/07/qa-with-sharif-el-gamal-about-dot-html). The interview appears on the beliefnet web site, which appears to be an Islamic web site, so this should be a pretty good source. With respect to the ‘is it a mosque or isn’t it question’, I think this interview answers that question nicely.

    “2. Why must the project necessarily include a mosque? …”

    “… With respect to the mosque, which will take up only a small portion of the final space, it’s a question of meeting a need. This mosque will be open to all. ”

    As they say in the blogging business, follow the link, and read the whole thing.

    I think the lead developer of the Ground Zero Mosque should be considered an authority on whether the development will include a mosque or not.

    So what do you think, Charles? Mosque?

  44. Michael Trujillo says:

    Owain,

    You’re all hung up on semantics. Many Jewish Community Centers include a room to hold ceremonies in (like Bar Mitzvahs) but the building is not called a “Temple”. Many hospitals, especially ones with Catholic ties, have small chapels in them for praying. We don’t call the the hospital a church. Evidently, this building will include a place for praying. Makes sense since devout Muslims are supposed to pray several times a day. Whether or not it meets the definition of a “Mosque” seems irrelevant to me.

    Why are you so eager to find that “someone” is lying to you? Who frikken cares? If you don’t think it should be allowed, fine. State your opinion and move on. You are, unfortunately, not a New York citizen though, so you have no dog in this fight. This endless re-posting of your opinion is tedious. What exactly are you looking for on this blog? Validation? Total agreement? Phone numbers from hot women? An invitation to appear on Fox News? What?

    Get a life.

  45. Al says:

    Wait… phone numbers from hot women was an option? Man, I have been Arguing on the Internet in all the wrong places.

  46. Owain says:

    Michail Trujillo

    I am merely responding to Trentelman’s blog post. He stated it was not a mosque. It appears he is incorrect on that fact. Trentelman objects to the term Ground Zero Mosque. I submit that if any building is close enough to the the Twin Towers that the fuselage and landing gear from one of the planes on 9/11 takes out the roof and the top two floors of that building, that’s close enough to ground zero to justify the label.

    Facts are stubborn things. Trentelman has incorrect facts. I found the correct facts following a 30 second Google search. How much time did Charles expend to verify his facts?

    What would I like? I would like answers.

    I think it would make for an interesting future blog entry for Charles to let us know where he got his information (note I do not say facts) for THIS blog post. I doubt that this entry sprang from the mind of Charles Trentelman as a completely original thought, so where did Charles go for his inspiration? Does he have a link?

    What agenda is being pursued by his source to deny the fact of the matter that the Ground Zero Mosque will be, in fact, a Mosque?

    What is the motivation at work to distance the site from Ground Zero? If the motivation is to support the developers of the Ground Zero Mosque, why is it necessary to falsify the facts?

    Was Charles aware of the falsification of the Mosque fact, or the actual proximity and damage that resulted to Burlington Coat Factory/Mosque site on 9/11, or were these issues merely ‘too good to check’?

    I think this would be a good opportunity for Charles to conduct a little personal introspection, and if he is interested in sharing the results of that introspection, that might make for an interesting blog post.

  47. Michael Trujillo says:

    The “Fact” is, it’s not solely a Mosque. The fact that you respond as if you didn’t evern read my post shows how obtuse you are. We get it. You don’t think it should be allowed. It’s an afront to common decency. You’d object no matter what it’s called.

    No further response needed. You answered the question with all the candor of a career politician. Thank God people who think like you are going the way of the Dodo.

    Ciao, dude.

  48. Owain says:

    Trentelman said it wasn’t a mosque at all, never was, never would be. He was wrong and I corrected him. Why are you so defensive?

    You sure read a lot into my posts that aren’t there. You asked me what I wanted. I told you. If I didn’t respond in the way you expected me to respond, maybe it’s because you don’t know what you are talking about.

    Look back at my responses in this thread? Where in this thread do I say that the mosque shouldn’t be allowed? Where in this thread do I say it’s an afront decency. Where in this thread to I object to it at all? I don’t. I am just pointing out errors, most of them Trentelman’s.

    I point out that Trentelman is wrong when he says it isn’t a mosque. Reread his original post. He is wrong.

    I corrected him when he said that Newt Gingrich called muslims Nazis. He didn’t. Trentelman was wrong.

    I pointed out that for a site that isn’t at Ground Zero, the building on that site, the Burlington Coat Factory was pretty much destroyed on 9/11. (The building was never used afterwards by Burlington, and was eventually sold to the mosque developers).

    For someone who scolds people about not reading your posts, you don’t do a very good job yourself.

  49. thinker says:

    OK, just to be clear, and just to get the basics out of the way, no it is not a mormon church.

    It is a basketball court, meeting room, childs play room, community center and more, with a prayer room. No matter what you have read elsewhere, it is NOT a mormon church.

    So if the mormons build one a few hundred feet from the Mountain Meadows massacre site, no one should have a problem, right?

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