Saturday, August 7, 2010


The Islamic Center was approved yesterday by the New York City's Landmarks Commission.

Whew! I am glad, very glad!

The people who objected (among them were Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin, and Rick Lazio, whom jumped on that bandwagon to help their own bandwagons), are already announcing lawyers, lawsuits -- suing the Landmark's Commission, NYC, and Mayor Bloomberg.

Oh boy, here we go--rallies, protest marches, fundraisers, postponements, delays.

The only objections that made sense to me were put forth by the Anti Defamation League. The ADL said, "The Islamic Center may have every right to build at this site, and may even have chosen the site to send a positive message about Islam." They explained it was ultimately -- "Not a question of rights, but a question of what is right ... building an Islamic Center in the shadow of the World Trade Center will cause some victims more pain unnecessarily -- and that is not right."

I can't accept "that is not right!"

I think the Islamic Center is wonderful idea. The huge plans -- a mosque, 500 seat auditorium, sport facilities, pool, restaurants, school, book stores, art exhibits -- benefitting the neighborhood, tourists, the city of New York -- locating it across the street from where the World Trade Center, is a powerful way of showing the world that Islam is not the enemy, that Muslims are people to respect, trust, enjoy as friends, as brothers and sisters.

The pain that 9/11 victims feel, cannot be assuaged. The dead are dead. What must be assuaged is anger, and blaming Islam, blaming Muslims,

I can't help remembering what President Roosevelt did to the Japanese with Presidential order 9066 -- interning, putting into fenced-in camps, Americans of Japanese ancestry -- some 120,000, and those who were not interned, became blighted people. They and their children continued to suffer, as American citizens who'd been labeled as enemies.

I wrote about banning the burqa, and our relationship with Islam yesterday. I'm feeling it more-so, stronger, louder, today. The Islamic Center could be the beginning of our connecting with Islam -- and hope -- a world where we can all live and survive together.

We need to embrace them, They need to embrace us.


fran leonardis said...

You mention that Newt Gingrich was one of the people that is against the Islamic center. However,he is the only that has offered a solution that makes sense, in my opinion, anyway. He said make it a interfaith community center, not just a mosque. Have a synagogue, a mosque, a catholic church, a buddhist temple etc...making is a true interfaith center. A place were all can come to worship and pray.
Personally, I think thats a great idea. A win/win for everyone.
But unfortunately, I dont think the people behind the building of the mosque have that mindset. Call me suspicious. Call me whatever you wish. I think that this is the wrong place to build a mosque. Because no matter the intent of the people that want it built, it will never be perceived that way by the families of the 9/11 victims, with obvious reason.

David Vernon said...

Remember when you point a finger that there are 3 more fingers on the same hand pointing right back at you.
My experience has been that forgiveness is the key to well being and ultimately some happiness.The moment is the only place I can find this. I hope that the people of this planet will soon rise above and move beyond. The past is gone while the future remains to be played out based on how we always choose to perceive it. Everything is perception. One's own truth begins with but a thought. If we are to know PEACE, doesn't it begin within before it can be honestly extended without? I trust the time is upon us when we no longer view things in reverse that remain outside of ourselves. As we open our eyes to truth. All situations and judgments that cause dis-ease will ultimately separate and end even divide us as a world. As a human being I choose to embrace a "peace of mind" and extend that to every living entity on the planet. AMEN

Linda said...

I too thought about this. I don't think it is an appropriate place for a mosque given the connotations of 9/11, but on the other hand what is wrong with there being a mosque in that location? Muslims died in 9/11 also.

I agree withe previous poster that an interfaith center would be ideal, but we all know that will never happen. So let them build the mosque.

Carola said...

Emily I agree with you.

bodacia said...

I'm with you 100 percent on this one, Emily. I believe that any objection (however thickly veiled) is racist at its core. Why is building a mosque at this particular location "insensitive?" Those who believe so are missing the very crucial point that it was not *Muslims* who bombed the WTC; it was radical extremist terrorists.

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