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Are Muslims driven by anti-Muslim bigotry when they protest the Ground Zero mosque?

Leftists have insisted that bigotry is behind the anti-Ground Zero mosque sentiment. For example, Bill Press went on CNN and said this:

Let me tell you something, first of all, we're not talking ground zero, we're talking two blocks from ground zero, there are apartment buildings there, there's a catholic church there, a pizza parlor there. there are hotels there. there might even be a porn shop there. This is not a sacred site, this is all about religion and the opponents, there's only one reason to oppose this mosque, and that is to paint Islam as an evil religion and to ain't all Muslims and equate them with a 19 terrorist who's flew into that building. it is wrong. it is un-American and the people against it ought to be ashamed of playing a cheap political trick.

This is an easy charge to make when those who don't want the mosque are Christian or Jewish.

But what if those who come out against it are Muslim themselves? Is it still anti-Muslim bigotry?

Last week two Muslim columnists published an article in which they said the plans to build the mosque at Ground Zero was an act of provocation. I linked to it and quoted some of it in a post here at Wizbang. Rick also wrote a post about the Muslim Canadian Congress that just wrote a letter to Imam Faisal Rauf, "urging the Cordoba House Initiative to abandon its proposed Ground-Zero Mosque in New York in the face of outrage expressed by large segments of the American population calling the proposal an act of 'fitna' or mischief."

Zuhdi Jasser, a devout Muslim and president and founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy issued a press release in response to President Obama's Iftar comments:

"As an American Muslim whose family fled persecution in Syria and as someone who has stood in the face of some resistance to the building of many of our houses of worship in the U.S., I fully understand the value of standing for religious freedom in America. But President Obama's statement about the Ground Zero mosque at last night's White House Iftar dinner is the latest example of political correctness gone awry.

The President commented that:

"Muslims have the same right to practice their religion as everyone else in this country. And that includes the right to build a place of worship and a community center on private property in Lower Manhattan, in accordance with local laws and ordinances. This is America."

Yes, Mr. President, this is America and you have fundamentally misunderstood the stakes in this discussion and the sentiments of the American people. Instead, you have focused on the very issue that the Islamist propagandists wish you to-- the narrative that Americans somehow need lectures about Islam, Muslims, and religious freedom.

Your message to Americans will be spun on Al Jazeera and by Islamists across the world that President Obama reassured a friendly global Muslim audience at the White House Ramadan dinner that he was going to remind Americans about the principles of religious freedom for Muslims since they seem to be trampling over those principles in the local dispute at Ground Zero in New York.

Mr. President this is not about religious freedom. It is about the importance of the World Trade Center site to the psyche of the American People. It is about a blatant attack on our sovereignty by people whose ideology ultimately demands the elimination of our way of life. While Imam Faisal Rauf may not share their violent tendencies he does seem to share a belief that Islamic structures are a political statement and even Ground Zero should be looked upon through the lens of political Islam and not a solely American one.

As a Muslim desperate to reform his faith, your remarks take us backwards from the day that my faith will come into modernity. I do not stand to eliminate Imam Rauf's religious freedom; I stand to make sure that my children's religious freedom will be determined by the liberty guaranteed in the American Constitution and not by clerics or leaders who are apologists for shar'iah law and will tell me what religious freedom is.

'Park 51', 'The Cordoba House' or whatever they are calling it today should not be built, not because it is not their right to do it - but because it is not right to do it." Mr. President, your involvement in this issue is divisive not uniting. Your follow-up stating that 'you will not speak to the wisdom of the construction of that mosque and center' indicates a passive-aggressive meddling on your part that only marginalizes those Muslim and non-Muslim voices against it while pretending to understand both sides of the debate.

Mark Levin interviewed Zuhdi Jasser on his radio show today. It's a must listen.

And now MEMRI reports that even Abd Al-Rahman Al-Rashed, the director of Al Arabiya, is against building the mosque at Ground Zero. Here's a portion:

"Muslims do not [really] yearn [to build] a mosque near the 9/11 cemetery, nor do they care whether bin Laden's cook is tried in a civilian court [or a military one]. Muslims are concerned about issues that involve the destinies of [entire] peoples... such as the establishment of the Palestinian state. If Obama focuses his energy and efforts on fighting for peace in the Middle East, this will be [far] more important and valuable than [his stance in favor of] the New York mosque...

"The [Ground Zero] mosque... is a strange affair, because it is not an issue [that concerns] the Muslims. [In fact,] we never even heard of it until it became the focus of vociferous arguments between supporters and objectors, most of them non-Muslim Americans!...

"The Muslims never asked for this [mosque], and even the angry Muslims do not want it. This is one of the few times when the two opposing sides are in agreement. Nevertheless, the dispute flared up. It made the front pages of newspapers and [featured on] the major television programs. Demonstrations were held in the streets, and large posters were plastered on New York buses, demanding that the construction of the mosque be prevented and reminding everyone of the 9/11 crime. This really is a strange battle!

"I can't imagine that Muslims [actually] want a mosque at this particular location, because it will become an arena for the promoters of hatred, and a monument to those who committed the crime. Moreover, there are no practicing Muslims in the area who need a place to worship, because it is a commercial district. Is there anyone who is [really] eager [to build] this mosque?...

Are the Muslim Canadian Congress, American Islamic Forum for Democracy, and the director of Al Arabiya all anti-Muslim bigots, too? Or could it be that they can see that building this mosque in the place where the World Trade Center Towers used to cast a shadow before they were destroyed by radical Islamic jihadists is an unnecessary provocation?


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Comments (15)

Obviously Bill Press, like ... (Below threshold)
ODA315:

Obviously Bill Press, like our President, has it all figured out.

This in a way proves that m... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

This in a way proves that most North American muslims are decidedly peaceloving and simply don`t want to offend. Their only wish is to go about their lives privately and not be controversial. My feeling is that the people most offended are those that who don't really know the idiosyncracies of either the site or those advocating this branch of sufism of Islam. Maybe what we need is a neutral fact finding commission.

Here is the new 13 acre ground zero site with the 85 story centerpiece, Freedom Tower. Who cares what is a fifth of a mile away? This is not Disney World in Orlando, but New York. Obviously not many people did care and this is why the Burlington building, had been abandoned for nine years in a decidely raffish part of town, that the new center Park51 might help to refurbish, if given the chance.

"This in a way proves that ... (Below threshold)
Joe:

"This in a way proves that most North American muslims are decidedly peaceloving and simply don`t want to offend. Their only wish is to go about their lives privately and not be controversial."

Yes it does, and it also proves what those against this have said all along what Imam Faisal Rauf is really trying to do.

Somehow his shaky background, his previous statements about 9-11, his refusal to name Hamas a terrorist group, his naming this "The Cordoba House" and wanting to open it on the 10th anniversary of 9-11 has gotten lost in the faux arguments of "first amendment rights" and "religious tolerance."

Not only Christians and Jew... (Below threshold)
maaye:

Not only Christians and Jews but also I , who is a devoted Buddhist, strongly oppose to building Ground Zero mosque. I don't care either it's two blocks away or whatever. It's a total insult to 9/11 victims.Why those muslims are so stubborn to build it in that particular area? and who knows if they recruit the extremists at their future center to attack NY again and from which sources they get money to build it? They're absolutely not honest.

Steve, it does nothing to p... (Below threshold)
epador:

Steve, it does nothing to prove or disprove that they aren't just wanting to avoid the spotlight now but have nefarious wishes for our way of life in the long run.

You make statements that don't logically follow as if they do. Now where have I seen that before.

Steve,your ignoran... (Below threshold)
Jeff:

Steve,

your ignorance regarding NYC is astounding ...

"Are the Muslim Canadian Co... (Below threshold)
Darby:

"Are the Muslim Canadian Congress, American Islamic Forum for Democracy, and the director of Al Arabiya all anti-Muslim bigots, too?"

No, They're not Anti-Muslim, bigots... But clearly they are self-hating Muslims.

/snark off

Looks like the bigot card i... (Below threshold)
Roy:

Looks like the bigot card is now as max'ed out as the race card.

Nancy piglosi wants an inv... (Below threshold)
914:

Nancy piglosi wants an investigation into who wants to investigate the funders of the hate center?

These ass backwards democrap traitors all need to go straight to hell. The sooner the better.

Steve, Why was the... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:

Steve,
Why was the The Building Abandoned ? It was because Landing gear of one of the plains that hit the tower crashed through the roof and went through several stories. Park Place is ground ZERO. All of lower Manhattan was ground Zero. That day paper and debris spread all through out lower Manhattan starting when the first plain hit and then the second one. Later in the day as we watched the rescue workers heading into the towers, we saw them fall and the dust cloud spread like grim specter of death. that cloud was glass, steal and human bone.

Where they are building this will overshadow other buildings until freedom tower goes up. It will be an ostentatious display of Victory .

The people behind this are not moderate Islam. The leader supports Hamas and he blames the US for 9-11. We were attacked because of American boots on Arab soil. When Saudi Arabia accepted US help and rejected OBL he was upset. American blood shed for protecting the Arab world was why we were attacked.

I

You can never trust the lef... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

You can never trust the left when it comes to religion. They work very hard at removing all signs of Christianity anywhere public. But now we are to believe they are concerned about muslims ability to worship wherever they want? No way lefties. You are a God hating bunch. Sorry. ww

Is is OK to build a church ... (Below threshold)
frank gill:

Is is OK to build a church in Saudi Arabia. If you cannot build a church there, muslims have no right to build a mosque on ground zero.

The Koran itself opposes bu... (Below threshold)

The Koran itself opposes building this mosque:

"And there are those who put up a mosque by way of mischief and infidelity - to disunite the Believers - and in preparation for one who warred against Allah and His Messenger aforetime. They will indeed swear that their intention is nothing but good; But Allah doth declare that they are certainly liars." (The Qur'an, sura 9, verse 107, Yusufali translation)

More here:
http://bit.ly/9ySVz9

I guess the Koran is bigoted and Islamiphobic too???

frank gill, it's nice that ... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

frank gill, it's nice that you think the United States should hold itself to the same standards as a theocratic dictatorship. Let me guess: you love the constitution and hate big government, right? Moron!

hcddbz, if it was such hallowed ground, and so important for non-Muslims to do something with it, why didn't they? Now that it's being converted into something useful--a community outreach centre where Muslims and non-Muslims can form personal and economic relationships with one another--it's suddenly the worst thing in the world.

Don't like it? Buy property in Manhattan near Ground Zero, demolish whatever is there, and build a cross-shaped tower five feet higher than the community centre. Or, you know, accept the fact that 9/11 wasn't an attack on Judeo-Christianity but on America, and that America has a large Muslim community with all the rights of Christians.

Hyper.Have you bee... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:

Hyper.

Have you been to NYC?
Where you here on 9-11? Did you work at the site of the 9-11 attack?
Did you volunteer at any time at all down their ? If not kindly keep your ideas of my motivations to yourself.

One as Americans we helped each other. I worked with Muslim's Christians and Jews to help the rescue workers and the recover workers. We worked together and prayed together. You do know that there are Mosque in lower Manhattan?
The issue with the Cordova project was the choice of the name, the backers of the project and people involved have not tried to work with anyone they have tied to make this as provocative as possible.

Yes they can build where they like but that does not require that people have to support or agree with it. Even among average Muslims it not supported, however it is backed by Hamas.

Which makes sense since the leader of this project
1) Support Hamas
2) states Terrorism, he stated, will end only when the West acknowledges the harm it has done to Muslims:
3)Who wrote the book "A Call to Prayer from the World Trade Center Rubble: Islamic Dawa in the Heart of America Post-9/11. ." i>
4)Received over 500K from Qatar
5) Wants to change the US Constitution to make it more Sharia compliant
6) Works with Muslim Brotherhood,


My objection is not to Muslims building a Mosque in NYC it to this building by this group. To ignore who he is and his ties is to ignore a viper crawling in in your child crib with claim animals like kids.





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