This Week in Conservative Media
Plans for the construction of a mosque just two blocks from Ground Zero are prompting outrage in the blogosphere, but the emotional reaction appears to falling on deaf ears. The Cordoba House project, according to CNN, calls for a 15-story community center that would include a performance-art center, gym, swimming pool, and a mosque. So far there seems little indication the city will do anything to appease those opposed to it.
"The time for a center like this has come because Islam is an American religion," Daisy Khan, executive director of the American Society for Muslim Advancement, told CNN. "We need to take the 9/11 tragedy and turn it into something very positive.” According to the New York Daily News, Imam Feisel Abdul Rauf, who helped found the Cordoba Initiative following the 9/11 attacks, said the project is intended to foster better relations between the West and Muslims, but if conservative commentators are any indication of the reaction, the mosque is opening, not healing, old wounds.
According to the American Thinker’s Ethel C. Fenig, “ Placing the center close to the site of the late World Trade Center will not promote healing and as for promoting a ‘better understanding of their religion’ it would certainly be a constant reminder of the evil its capable of.”
Ruthfully Yours blogger Madeline Brooks calls it “a slap in the face.” Like many opponents to the mosque, she brings up building-permit issues, an effort that feels like a desperate measure to stop in the inevitable. “Still another unsettling part of Rauf’s problem mosque is why the city has given the building a pass. Records for the Department of Buildings have shown numerous complaints for illegal construction and no access, yet the issues were listed as “resolved.” The recent Times Square bombing attempt is also brought up as a reason for Mayor Bloomberg to stop to the mosque from being built. “If not, he will be helping to provide a handy meeting place for future terrorists, those who understand Imam Rauf’s real message: Speak sweetly, appear to be a well-adjusted member of American society, and plan the destruction of America, either with bombs or ‘peaceful’ undermining.”
But the plans for the mosque have been apparent for months, if not longer, and the complaints have had little influence. Last year WorldNetDaily’s Chelsea Schilling collected reader responses when news of the mosque was first unveiled. The protest? Sound and fury, signifying nothing—so far. “Who wants to bet this place becomes a "tourist attraction" for Muslims? This mosque will become one of Islam's holiest shrines as it sits upon the site of their greatest modern military victory,” wrote one. Another reader, seeming depressed by it all, simply added: “Good idea. Maybe terrorists will be less likely to bomb this area if there's a mosque there."