Saturday, September 18, 2010

Imam says Gound Zero mosque site is not 'hallowed ground

It is two blocks from ground zero, but the site of a proposed mosque and Islamic center shouldn't be seen as "hallowed ground" in a neighborhood that also contains a strip club and a betting parlor, the cleric leading the effort said Monday.

Making an ardent case for the compatibility of Islam and American values, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf reiterated that he is searching for a solution to the furor the project has created. But he left unanswered exactly what he had in mind.

If anything, Rauf only deepened the questions around the project's future, telling an audience at the Council on Foreign Relations think tank that he was "exploring all options" - but declining to specify them - while also arguing that a high-profile site is necessary to get across his message of moderate Islam.

While opponents of the project see it as insulting the memories of the thousands killed by Muslim extremists in the 2001 terrorist attacks, Rauf said he doesn't see the spot as sacred memorial space.

"It's absolutely disingenuous, as many have said, that that block is hallowed ground," Rauf said, noting the nearby exotic dance and betting businesses. "So let's clarify that misperception."

I'm from the school that believes if body parts were found on your property, it's part of Ground Zero.

But whatever you believe, you should agree that this "imam" doesn't help his cause with insensitive statements.

If a widow wants you to respect the site where they found her dead husband's hand, you don't argue with her. You don't have to give in, but you don't argue with her.

No comments: