Skip to comments.Only Muslims should decide whether to build Ground Zero mosque
Posted on 07/30/2010 8:12:54 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
When I first began reading about the controversy surrounding a proposed Mosque being built near Ground Zero in New York City, I was completely mystified: We live in America! In 2010! Are we seriously debating whether a mainstream religion should have the right to build a house of worship?
I was even more bewildered when I read that 52 percent of New Yorkers were opposed to the construction of the Mosque, with 31 percent in favor and 17 percent undecided. Filled with moral outrage, I posted an angry Facebook status with a link to an article about conservative politicians capitalizing on the bigotry.
Almost immediately, though, I began to question my indignation. Having lived in New York for about three months now, I can attest to the fact that it's among the most tolerant places in the world. On any given subway car, you'll find more economic, racial, religious and political diversity than most college campuses. The 8 million people who live in New York 's five boroughs are not generally a bigoted bunch so why were they showing such contempt for Muslims?
There's no simple answer, of course, and that may not even be a fair question. Some New Yorkers are clearly just motivated by blind prejudice and hatred. Some are worried about zoning laws. And still some have formed their opinions based on centuries-old religious struggles. (The same poll found that 66 percent of Jews in New York opposed the Mosque.)
But all of them at least those who have lived in New York over the past decade have one thing in common: they watched as the twin towers fell only miles from their homes.
And so I tread carefully here. As someone who watched 9/11 unfold on CNN, safe in my suburban Massachusetts home, I cannot relate to the people who lost family members, friends and co-workers in those towers, the people whose minds filled with fear for months every time they boarded a bus or entered a crowded office building.
But as a Mormon, I can't accept that religious persecution is justified by an isolated group of people who severely misinterpret their faith. Very little compares in scope to the 9/11 terror attacks, but every religious group contains members who use their beliefs as an excuse to commit atrocities. Should Protestant churches be banned from places where the KKK has committed murder? Should Latter-day Saints be forbidden from building chapels on blocks where crazed fundamentalists have committed child abuse?
Much was made last week of Sarah Palin's Tweet on this subject: "Peace-seeking Muslims, pls understand, Ground Zero mosque is UNNECESSARY provocation; it stabs hearts. Pls reject it in interest of healing."
And I can see her critics' points. For one thing, Palin must know by now that whenever she makes a comment (even on a local zoning issue) she further incites the type of inflammatory partisan debate that has gridlocked Congress. For another, it seems unreasonable that she wants "peace-seeking Muslims" to distinguish themselves from terrorists while so many of us seem unwilling to distinguish a Mosque from a terrorist boot camp.
But on at least one count, I think Palin has it right. If anyone is going to decide not to build a Mosque near Ground Zero, it should be Muslims. Again, as a Mormon, I would be infuriated if a government prohibited my church from building a chapel because of a few violent, misguided Latter-day Saints, but if church leaders decided for themselves that it was unnecessary to incite the anger of so many, I would stand behind their judgment.
I understand that New Yorkers have more reasons than most to be anxious, scared or angry. But I also believe that all people should be allowed to worship "how, where, or what they may."
And so, I believe, did the founding fathers.
McKay Coppins is a journalism major at BYU. His weekly blog chronicles the Mormon twenty-something experience. McKay's column, "Mormon Twentysomething," appears Fridays on MormonTimes.com.
Is this a joke?
Who is this idiot kidding?
It’s name “Cordoba House” trumpets the fact that this is a political statement, not religious.
No mosques in America until there are churches in Mecca!
In the US, Islam is sedition.
I’ll let the Muzzies decide on their mosque at Ground Zero when they let the Jews bomb the great mosque in Mecca and erect a synagogue in its place!
When did Mormoms fly planes into buildings and murder 3,000+ people in the name of Brigham Young or Joe Smith or whomever Mormoms have faith in. Not a perfect analogy but most people get the drift.
Islam is not a religion. IT is a political movement of conquest. I am amazed a Mormom wrote this because most of them are pretty smart.
The whole discussion is a joke. It's private property; the owner builds what the owner wants. Period.
Is this Onion or Scrappleface ???
What kind of a sick joke is this ???
Soon the USA will have more mosques than McDonald’s outlets.
Keep it up. Even now we don’t recognize this nation!
Where’s our Francisco Franco?
Why not just surrender to our muslim superiors? Islam means submit.
The name selected for this mosque and the date of establishment are signifies that they see this as a Western capital of Islam. It'll make it much easier to enslave the kufir seized in jihad. Y’see, prisoners must first be taken to “muslim territory” before they can be divided up as slaves.
The whole NOTION of muslim territory is an offense to our Constitutional foundation with a freedom of religion.
No. Hell no.
Until POLITICAL Islam dies as Nazism died, there can be no tolerance for the intolerant system of rule that masquerades as a religion.
Intemperate to point out that Mountain Meadows would be a poor choice for a Mormon Temple and cultural center?
Irrational to recommend that the forest of Katyn would be a poor place to construct a Russian cultural center?
How about a Shinto shrine and Japanese cultural center at Pearl Harbor?
I wonder if he would change his tune if fanatical Muzzies flew a large airplane into the Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City and then wanted to build a mosque next to Temple Square.
"You've got to be kidding,"
MORMON Times, McKay.
Not MORON Times.
McKay, someone slaughtered your wife, your son, your daughter. Killed your mom and dad too.
They want to build a house next door to you, what to do, what to do????
And they will be funded in violation of our Consitution by the “State” (Saudi Arabia).
Bought and paid for by wealthy foreignors who hate America. I think it should be built so we can blow it uo for them.