The Islamic center at Ground Zero

It looks like the Islamic cultural center being proposed for construction near the site where the World Trade Center stood before 9/11 will be built:

Plans to build an Islamic cultural center near the World Trade Center site moved forward after New York City’s Landmarks Preservation Commission voted to allow the demolition of a building that would be replaced by a mosque.

The panel denied landmark status to a long-vacant 152-year- old lower Manhattan building on Park Place, formerly a Burlington Coat Factory department store. The unanimous vote cleared a hurdle for the site to be torn down and the mosque, recreation and cultural center to be built.

The proposed mosque has drawn opposition from former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who have called its proposed presence near the site of the deadliest terrorist attack in U.S. history inappropriate. Mayor Michael Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn have supported the project.

“To cave to popular sentiment would be to hand a victory to the terrorists,” Bloomberg said at a news conference today on Governors Island in New York Harbor, within view of the Statue of Liberty, where he was joined by Christian, Jewish and Muslim clergy. “No neighborhood in our city is off limits to God’s love and mercy.”

The Cordoba Initiative, the project’s sponsor, describes itself as a pluralistic organization seeking better relations between the Islamic community and other faiths. Plans for the center include a 500-seat auditorium, swimming pool, restaurants, bookstores and space for art exhibitions, according to the organization’s website.

via Ground Zero Mosque Plans Move Forward After Key Vote – Bloomberg.

We do have freedom of religion in this country, so I see no legal basis for preventing this construction.  But this is not just a mosque.  Swimming pool?  restaurants?  And I’d like more information about the Cordoba Initiative.  Is this a Muslim group that claims Islamic sovereignty over Spain?  If so, they are likely radicals.  And is there any doubt that radical Muslims will use this monument as an occasion for triumphalism? But, again, religious freedom has to mean freedom for Muslims and everyone else as well as for Christians.

We can complain about something without thinking that the state should prevent it (a principle that has other applications). [Like what?]

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • http://webulite.com webulite.com

    “But this is not just a mosque. Swimming pool? restaurants? And I’d like more information about the Cordoba Initiative.”

    You should see some of the protestant mega churches in the USA. They have kiosks with insurance outlets, and auto repair. It’s amazing. In the USA protestant christianity is a HUGE business.

    Cheers! webulite.com

  • http://webulite.com webulite.com

    “But this is not just a mosque. Swimming pool? restaurants? And I’d like more information about the Cordoba Initiative.”

    You should see some of the protestant mega churches in the USA. They have kiosks with insurance outlets, and auto repair. It’s amazing. In the USA protestant christianity is a HUGE business.

    Cheers! webulite.com

  • Peter Leavitt

    The Cordoba Initiative, the project’s sponsor, describes itself as a pluralistic organization seeking better relations between the Islamic community and other faiths.

    This is hokum. The Cordoba Initiative is headed by a radical Islamic Muslim Imam, Feisal Abdul Rauf. The mosque near Ground Zero is meant as essentially as an insult to the American people.

    Andy McCarthy, a scholar of radical Islam, has written an article that exposes Rauf, Rauf’s Dawa from the World Trade Center Rubble Meet the Ground Zero Mosque imam’s Muslim Brotherhood friends. including the following introductory paragraph:

    Feisal Abdul Rauf is the imam behind the “Cordoba Initiative” that is spearheading plans to build a $100 million Islamic center at Ground Zero, the site where nearly 3,000 Americans were killed by jihadists on 9/11. He is also the author of a book called What’s Right with Islam Is What’s Right with America. But the book hasn’t always been called that. It was called quite something else for non-English-speaking audiences. In Malaysia, it was published as A Call to Prayer from the World Trade Center Rubble: Islamic Dawa in the Heart of America Post-9/11. Dawa is an Arabic term, the contemporary sense of Which Islamic mission or propaganda.

  • Peter Leavitt

    The Cordoba Initiative, the project’s sponsor, describes itself as a pluralistic organization seeking better relations between the Islamic community and other faiths.

    This is hokum. The Cordoba Initiative is headed by a radical Islamic Muslim Imam, Feisal Abdul Rauf. The mosque near Ground Zero is meant as essentially as an insult to the American people.

    Andy McCarthy, a scholar of radical Islam, has written an article that exposes Rauf, Rauf’s Dawa from the World Trade Center Rubble Meet the Ground Zero Mosque imam’s Muslim Brotherhood friends. including the following introductory paragraph:

    Feisal Abdul Rauf is the imam behind the “Cordoba Initiative” that is spearheading plans to build a $100 million Islamic center at Ground Zero, the site where nearly 3,000 Americans were killed by jihadists on 9/11. He is also the author of a book called What’s Right with Islam Is What’s Right with America. But the book hasn’t always been called that. It was called quite something else for non-English-speaking audiences. In Malaysia, it was published as A Call to Prayer from the World Trade Center Rubble: Islamic Dawa in the Heart of America Post-9/11. Dawa is an Arabic term, the contemporary sense of Which Islamic mission or propaganda.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Excuse my poor language in parts of the above post that was written too hastily.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Excuse my poor language in parts of the above post that was written too hastily.

  • Winston Smith

    Is it safe to predict that the mosque will be repeatedly vandalized and covered in pigs’ blood by angry New Yorkers? There will have to be a strong NYPD presence to protect it from outraged locals who remember 9/11 and associate it with muslims.

  • Winston Smith

    Is it safe to predict that the mosque will be repeatedly vandalized and covered in pigs’ blood by angry New Yorkers? There will have to be a strong NYPD presence to protect it from outraged locals who remember 9/11 and associate it with muslims.

  • http://www.newreformationpress.com Patrick Kyle

    Cordoba – Islamic capital from which they ruled Andalusia otherwise known as Spain and parts of western Europe.

    Ask yourself this. Is there any Islamic country in the World that would let us build a church near the site o of some ‘Western atrocity’ against them, in the interest of fostering peace and harmony? Even our staunchest Islamic ally (if there is such a thing) would discourage such a project as as ‘insensitive’ at best, especially if it bore the flag of one of the Crusades or sported the cross of St. James the Moore Killer

    I hate to say this, but they will use the freedoms granted in the Constitution to harm us.

  • http://www.newreformationpress.com Patrick Kyle

    Cordoba – Islamic capital from which they ruled Andalusia otherwise known as Spain and parts of western Europe.

    Ask yourself this. Is there any Islamic country in the World that would let us build a church near the site o of some ‘Western atrocity’ against them, in the interest of fostering peace and harmony? Even our staunchest Islamic ally (if there is such a thing) would discourage such a project as as ‘insensitive’ at best, especially if it bore the flag of one of the Crusades or sported the cross of St. James the Moore Killer

    I hate to say this, but they will use the freedoms granted in the Constitution to harm us.

  • Kirk

    @4

    I here this “would a Muslim country let Christians” argument over and over and over again and it’s frankly absurd. How does the way Saudi Arabia or Yemen or Algeria treat Christians have any bearing on this conversation? You’re condemning Middle Eastern human rights records while simultaneously saying we should emulate them. The conditions for American freedoms are not based on reciprocating how other nations treat Christians.

    Personally, I’m glad this is going forward. It speaks to the strength of the rule of law in America. We have freedom of religion, and there’s nothing that a bunch of angry “patriots” and pundits can do about it.

  • Kirk

    @4

    I here this “would a Muslim country let Christians” argument over and over and over again and it’s frankly absurd. How does the way Saudi Arabia or Yemen or Algeria treat Christians have any bearing on this conversation? You’re condemning Middle Eastern human rights records while simultaneously saying we should emulate them. The conditions for American freedoms are not based on reciprocating how other nations treat Christians.

    Personally, I’m glad this is going forward. It speaks to the strength of the rule of law in America. We have freedom of religion, and there’s nothing that a bunch of angry “patriots” and pundits can do about it.

  • http://lutherama.blogspot.com Dr. Luther in 21st Century

    Legally, the hands of the city planners are tied. And to be honest, even though it is a muslim center, I am happy. Or I should say, I will be happy if I am extended the same kind of freedom when I proclaim the Gospel in parts of the country where it would be conceived as insulting.

    Personally, I could care less about where the center was being built. But, then I have never been in NYC much less lived there.

  • http://lutherama.blogspot.com Dr. Luther in 21st Century

    Legally, the hands of the city planners are tied. And to be honest, even though it is a muslim center, I am happy. Or I should say, I will be happy if I am extended the same kind of freedom when I proclaim the Gospel in parts of the country where it would be conceived as insulting.

    Personally, I could care less about where the center was being built. But, then I have never been in NYC much less lived there.

  • Tom Hering

    The threat posed by any mosque is spiritual. 30% of participants in U.S. mosques are converts. The proper response for Christians is to gather for prayer, fasting and repentance. It would not be inappropriate to establish a place for this near the Ground Zero mosque.

  • Tom Hering

    The threat posed by any mosque is spiritual. 30% of participants in U.S. mosques are converts. The proper response for Christians is to gather for prayer, fasting and repentance. It would not be inappropriate to establish a place for this near the Ground Zero mosque.

  • Joe

    From a legal standpoint it there is simply no legitimate way to prevent it from being built. I am not a fan of it being built at this time and in that place. It does not follow that because we have the right to do something, it is right to do it.

  • Joe

    From a legal standpoint it there is simply no legitimate way to prevent it from being built. I am not a fan of it being built at this time and in that place. It does not follow that because we have the right to do something, it is right to do it.

  • LAJ

    Bill O’Reilly on Fox pleaded with the muslim on his show to choose not to build it because so many are opposed to it. He got nowhere. Would we allow the Japanese to build a memorial at Pearl Harbor even now? No!

  • LAJ

    Bill O’Reilly on Fox pleaded with the muslim on his show to choose not to build it because so many are opposed to it. He got nowhere. Would we allow the Japanese to build a memorial at Pearl Harbor even now? No!

  • Peter Leavitt

    Patrick Kyle: Cordoba – Islamic capital from which they ruled Andalusia otherwise known as Spain and parts of western Europe.

    Yes, and the Great Cordoba Mosque was built on top of the ruins of a Visigothic Christian church after the Muslims converted all of the Christians in Cordoba. Later, after the Reconquista, the Mosque with marvelous justice was converted to a Christian cathedral.

    We learn from Andalucia.com that:

    At the height of Muslim power, during the Omega Caliphate at the end of the 10th century, the fearsome warlord Al-Mansur led a bloody raid through northern Spain, going as far into Christian territory as Santiago de Compostela. On the loose in the great pilgrims’ city, the Moor had the audacity of riding his horse into the cathedral and letting it drink from the font of holy water, outraging the Christian townsfolk; then, even more insultingly, he had the church’s bells carried 500 miles south to Cordoba, where they were melted down to make lamps to illuminate the Great Mosque.

    The radical Muslim, Imam Rauf, the leader of the Cordoba Initiative knows all about this history, as do most radical Muslims who are involved at present in a grand reconquista strategy of their own. Many
    Americans, who know little of this history and less of what the radical Muslims are up to, blithely view this as a simple issue of property rights.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Patrick Kyle: Cordoba – Islamic capital from which they ruled Andalusia otherwise known as Spain and parts of western Europe.

    Yes, and the Great Cordoba Mosque was built on top of the ruins of a Visigothic Christian church after the Muslims converted all of the Christians in Cordoba. Later, after the Reconquista, the Mosque with marvelous justice was converted to a Christian cathedral.

    We learn from Andalucia.com that:

    At the height of Muslim power, during the Omega Caliphate at the end of the 10th century, the fearsome warlord Al-Mansur led a bloody raid through northern Spain, going as far into Christian territory as Santiago de Compostela. On the loose in the great pilgrims’ city, the Moor had the audacity of riding his horse into the cathedral and letting it drink from the font of holy water, outraging the Christian townsfolk; then, even more insultingly, he had the church’s bells carried 500 miles south to Cordoba, where they were melted down to make lamps to illuminate the Great Mosque.

    The radical Muslim, Imam Rauf, the leader of the Cordoba Initiative knows all about this history, as do most radical Muslims who are involved at present in a grand reconquista strategy of their own. Many
    Americans, who know little of this history and less of what the radical Muslims are up to, blithely view this as a simple issue of property rights.

  • Cincinnatus

    I’m going to have to second Joe: while I’m not a fan of a gigantic mosque being constructed next to a still-smoldering crater, yet redolent of slaughtered Americans and, to many citizens, of Islam itself, I can think of no legitimate or commendable way in which to prevent its construction.

  • Cincinnatus

    I’m going to have to second Joe: while I’m not a fan of a gigantic mosque being constructed next to a still-smoldering crater, yet redolent of slaughtered Americans and, to many citizens, of Islam itself, I can think of no legitimate or commendable way in which to prevent its construction.

  • DonS

    I’m with Joe and Cincinnatus on this one in theory. However, I wonder what would happen if it were a large evangelical church, desiring to build this kind of facility in this spot? Environmental studies, traffic studies, inappropriate land use given surrounding uses, loss of tax revenue will hurt poor people, litigation for years and years, blah, blah, blah.

    Any of you in an urban or suburban area tried to expand your church building in the past decade or so? Local governments hate churches. Can’t tax ‘em.

  • DonS

    I’m with Joe and Cincinnatus on this one in theory. However, I wonder what would happen if it were a large evangelical church, desiring to build this kind of facility in this spot? Environmental studies, traffic studies, inappropriate land use given surrounding uses, loss of tax revenue will hurt poor people, litigation for years and years, blah, blah, blah.

    Any of you in an urban or suburban area tried to expand your church building in the past decade or so? Local governments hate churches. Can’t tax ‘em.

  • Cincinnatus

    I see your point, DonS: there are zoning regulations that could be used (not that they should be) to hinder this development.

    On the other hand, mosques–no matter how gigantic (are there really that many Muslims in NYC?)–are not taxable entities either. Is it reasonable to suppose that the government of New York City has such an overriding passion for political correctness that it would obstruct the construction of a non-taxable church but not of a mosque?

  • Cincinnatus

    I see your point, DonS: there are zoning regulations that could be used (not that they should be) to hinder this development.

    On the other hand, mosques–no matter how gigantic (are there really that many Muslims in NYC?)–are not taxable entities either. Is it reasonable to suppose that the government of New York City has such an overriding passion for political correctness that it would obstruct the construction of a non-taxable church but not of a mosque?

  • DonS

    I don’t know the answer, Cincinnatus. And I haven’t had the energy or the time to really examine this issue that closely as to such nuances as taxability (the property may be partially taxable because of its mixed uses, for example). All I know is that I’m seeing a lot more talk of deference to property rights in the media and from government officials regarding this particular property than I generally see when a large Christian church is seeking to build or expand.

  • DonS

    I don’t know the answer, Cincinnatus. And I haven’t had the energy or the time to really examine this issue that closely as to such nuances as taxability (the property may be partially taxable because of its mixed uses, for example). All I know is that I’m seeing a lot more talk of deference to property rights in the media and from government officials regarding this particular property than I generally see when a large Christian church is seeking to build or expand.

  • Gary

    Those who don’t mind the mosque being built for the sake of “freedom” wouldn’t mind, of course, if we were to build a ham factory down the street, a wine factory across from it, a Jewish center on top of it, a Zionist Church around one corner, and a brothel around the other. Not to mention, of course, plastering the area with billboards of Mohammed and other religious figures telling us that “God is groovy!” After all…it’s only about freedom.

  • Gary

    Those who don’t mind the mosque being built for the sake of “freedom” wouldn’t mind, of course, if we were to build a ham factory down the street, a wine factory across from it, a Jewish center on top of it, a Zionist Church around one corner, and a brothel around the other. Not to mention, of course, plastering the area with billboards of Mohammed and other religious figures telling us that “God is groovy!” After all…it’s only about freedom.

  • DonS

    Cincinnatus @ 13: And further to the point I made @ 14, notice how we saw all of this deference in the media and from our political elites a couple of weeks ago to the Tenth Amendment, when Judge Tauro ruled in the Massachusetts DOMA case that the federal government had no right to define the term “marriage”, because that right is reserved to the states. Then, Judge Vaughn Walker rules this week on California’s Prop. 8 that, never mind, states don’t have the right to define “marriage” after all. So, where, exactly, was the media and public official outrage when the will of the people was hijacked by a federal judge using a rationale in direct conflict with that of Judge Tauro?

    Consistency, particularly as public policy intersects with Christian values, is not a strength of our current governmental system.

  • DonS

    Cincinnatus @ 13: And further to the point I made @ 14, notice how we saw all of this deference in the media and from our political elites a couple of weeks ago to the Tenth Amendment, when Judge Tauro ruled in the Massachusetts DOMA case that the federal government had no right to define the term “marriage”, because that right is reserved to the states. Then, Judge Vaughn Walker rules this week on California’s Prop. 8 that, never mind, states don’t have the right to define “marriage” after all. So, where, exactly, was the media and public official outrage when the will of the people was hijacked by a federal judge using a rationale in direct conflict with that of Judge Tauro?

    Consistency, particularly as public policy intersects with Christian values, is not a strength of our current governmental system.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Cincinnatus, the construction laborers, union and non-union, are talking about a boycott of this project. Ordinary New Yorkers are appalled with radical Islam project and intend to do something about it.

    Emmett Tyrrel in the American Spectator sums the issue up nicely as follows:

    Will the Ruling Class have its way? I have my doubts. The Country Class is getting stronger. It is not opposed to the building of mosques, just not on the sites of where so many brave Americans were killed by people who hated them because they were American. The Country Class will decide the monuments for the brave. The Ruling Class can eat cake.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Cincinnatus, the construction laborers, union and non-union, are talking about a boycott of this project. Ordinary New Yorkers are appalled with radical Islam project and intend to do something about it.

    Emmett Tyrrel in the American Spectator sums the issue up nicely as follows:

    Will the Ruling Class have its way? I have my doubts. The Country Class is getting stronger. It is not opposed to the building of mosques, just not on the sites of where so many brave Americans were killed by people who hated them because they were American. The Country Class will decide the monuments for the brave. The Ruling Class can eat cake.

  • Kirk

    @Gary:

    Sure, that’s the other half of the coin. In fact, knowing NYC, I’d wager the area is already chock-full of things that Muslims don’t like.

    Out of curiosity, though, since you seem to be against this mosque, what should be the standard for determining what should and shouldn’t be built? Should we draw the line at things you don’t like, or at things your really really don’t like? And why should we be willing to throw out the Constitution in this case and not in the case of, say state mandated health insurance purchases?

  • Kirk

    @Gary:

    Sure, that’s the other half of the coin. In fact, knowing NYC, I’d wager the area is already chock-full of things that Muslims don’t like.

    Out of curiosity, though, since you seem to be against this mosque, what should be the standard for determining what should and shouldn’t be built? Should we draw the line at things you don’t like, or at things your really really don’t like? And why should we be willing to throw out the Constitution in this case and not in the case of, say state mandated health insurance purchases?

  • NavyMom

    Building that mosque in that location is an affront to the 9/11 victims’ families.

  • NavyMom

    Building that mosque in that location is an affront to the 9/11 victims’ families.

  • DonS

    Amen, NavyMom. Regardless of the issues of governmental approval, property rights, and the like, the appearance is that this center is intended to be an affront to those victims’ families, and to the citizens of the U.S. Whether or not it was originally intended to be offensive, the fact that the Muslims have refused to back down despite the clamor speaks volumes.

  • DonS

    Amen, NavyMom. Regardless of the issues of governmental approval, property rights, and the like, the appearance is that this center is intended to be an affront to those victims’ families, and to the citizens of the U.S. Whether or not it was originally intended to be offensive, the fact that the Muslims have refused to back down despite the clamor speaks volumes.

  • hairy knuckle dragger

    What is meant by the term ‘rule of law?’ The idea of the rule of law has been completely changed from what it meant, even twenty years ago. It used to be natural law, pick any OT prophet telling the king he is subject to and violating God’s law. The idea of natural law governed the idea of law. See Samuel Rutherford, Lex Rex. Now the dominant idea is that law originates with man. The idea of natural law drove the law in one direction; the idea of positive law drives it in another. The whole idea of the rule of law means something completely different today; that there is some sort of legal process or 5 out of 9 votes on the Supreme Court.

    Recently, a federal judge decided that marriage is no longer of divine origin but human origin. I am not sure exactly what the constitution means in an objective sense; it seems to mean what 5 out of nine justices say it means. It says nothing about abortion and yet when held up to the sun, in the penumbra, a wymen’s right to abort her child is found.

    So, with respect to this Mosque, I think we should be guided by what I want as one in whom the law originates. It should not be built on this cite.

  • hairy knuckle dragger

    What is meant by the term ‘rule of law?’ The idea of the rule of law has been completely changed from what it meant, even twenty years ago. It used to be natural law, pick any OT prophet telling the king he is subject to and violating God’s law. The idea of natural law governed the idea of law. See Samuel Rutherford, Lex Rex. Now the dominant idea is that law originates with man. The idea of natural law drove the law in one direction; the idea of positive law drives it in another. The whole idea of the rule of law means something completely different today; that there is some sort of legal process or 5 out of 9 votes on the Supreme Court.

    Recently, a federal judge decided that marriage is no longer of divine origin but human origin. I am not sure exactly what the constitution means in an objective sense; it seems to mean what 5 out of nine justices say it means. It says nothing about abortion and yet when held up to the sun, in the penumbra, a wymen’s right to abort her child is found.

    So, with respect to this Mosque, I think we should be guided by what I want as one in whom the law originates. It should not be built on this cite.

  • Peter Leavitt

    NavyMom gets to the heart of the issue.

    The families of the 9/11 victims regard Ground Zero as a sacred place. While they have repeatedly said they do not have an issue with Islam in general, they well know that the savage, cold blooded, radical Muslims who hate America murdered their love ones. They for the most part have seen through Imam Rauf’s rhetoric of interfaith and cross-cultural understanding; further that the Ground Zero Mosque will be for many Muslims the site of a fabulous military triumph that will help their cause of spreading Shariah law around the world.

    This issue goes well beyond property rights. The arrogance and insensitivity of the Cordoba Initiative is stunning.

  • Peter Leavitt

    NavyMom gets to the heart of the issue.

    The families of the 9/11 victims regard Ground Zero as a sacred place. While they have repeatedly said they do not have an issue with Islam in general, they well know that the savage, cold blooded, radical Muslims who hate America murdered their love ones. They for the most part have seen through Imam Rauf’s rhetoric of interfaith and cross-cultural understanding; further that the Ground Zero Mosque will be for many Muslims the site of a fabulous military triumph that will help their cause of spreading Shariah law around the world.

    This issue goes well beyond property rights. The arrogance and insensitivity of the Cordoba Initiative is stunning.

  • Joe

    This is the price of freedom; it means that people will do insensitive things, things that make you angry, upset, confused. That is how it works. But, it is better too be angry, upset and confused than to grant the additional powers necessary to stop it to the gov’t. If we empower the gov’t to stop the construction of this mosque because it offends “us,” how can we complain if they stop the construction of a church when we are no long the “us.”

  • Joe

    This is the price of freedom; it means that people will do insensitive things, things that make you angry, upset, confused. That is how it works. But, it is better too be angry, upset and confused than to grant the additional powers necessary to stop it to the gov’t. If we empower the gov’t to stop the construction of this mosque because it offends “us,” how can we complain if they stop the construction of a church when we are no long the “us.”

  • kerner

    “Is there any Islamic country in the world that world let us build a chruch near th site of some “Western atrocity against them…?”
    Patrick Kyle @5

    Most Muslims regard the Crusades as atrocities, or at least agressive acts of war, against them. Most are also none too fond of the European colonization of the former Arab provinces (including Syria) of the Ottoman Empire after WWI.

    In Aleppo, within a very short distance from the borders of the Crusader states of Antioch and Edessa, in what is now Syria, you will find this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_the_Holy_Mother_of_God_(Aleppo)

    The chuch complex includes a large hall, a theater, and a high school, and is the site of concerts, seminars, and other events.

    In Aleppo you will also find this:

    http://aeechurch.com/index.html

    and this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cathedral_of_the_Forty_Martyrs_(Aleppo)

    and more.

    In the Syrian city of Hims, which is near the old Crusader fortress, Krak des Chevaliers, are a number of similarly impressive churches.

    So, I guess the answer to your question is “yes”.

    While I do not equate whatever tolerance the Syrian Muslims extend to Syrian Christians to the religious freedom we enjoy under the Constitution, some Islamic countries DO tolerate the presence of Christians and our churches.

  • kerner

    “Is there any Islamic country in the world that world let us build a chruch near th site of some “Western atrocity against them…?”
    Patrick Kyle @5

    Most Muslims regard the Crusades as atrocities, or at least agressive acts of war, against them. Most are also none too fond of the European colonization of the former Arab provinces (including Syria) of the Ottoman Empire after WWI.

    In Aleppo, within a very short distance from the borders of the Crusader states of Antioch and Edessa, in what is now Syria, you will find this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_the_Holy_Mother_of_God_(Aleppo)

    The chuch complex includes a large hall, a theater, and a high school, and is the site of concerts, seminars, and other events.

    In Aleppo you will also find this:

    http://aeechurch.com/index.html

    and this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cathedral_of_the_Forty_Martyrs_(Aleppo)

    and more.

    In the Syrian city of Hims, which is near the old Crusader fortress, Krak des Chevaliers, are a number of similarly impressive churches.

    So, I guess the answer to your question is “yes”.

    While I do not equate whatever tolerance the Syrian Muslims extend to Syrian Christians to the religious freedom we enjoy under the Constitution, some Islamic countries DO tolerate the presence of Christians and our churches.

  • LAJ

    I should think that if the question is brought before a judge, that judge could use his own judicial discretion and in this particular instance refuse to allow this mosque. On the other hand–no construction workers–no mosque!

  • LAJ

    I should think that if the question is brought before a judge, that judge could use his own judicial discretion and in this particular instance refuse to allow this mosque. On the other hand–no construction workers–no mosque!

  • kerner

    Building this Mosque may very well be intended as an affront to the USA and/or Christianity by some or most of the Muslims who are building it. But I agree with Joe @24, and couldn’t have sais it better.

  • kerner

    Building this Mosque may very well be intended as an affront to the USA and/or Christianity by some or most of the Muslims who are building it. But I agree with Joe @24, and couldn’t have sais it better.

  • DonS

    hkd @ 22 & Joe @ 24: Joe, I quote your comment, to make a point: “If we empower the gov’t to stop the construction of this mosque because it offends “us,” how can we complain if they stop the construction of a church when we are no long the “us.””

    I absolutely agree with you. But, we ARE no longer the “us”. Political elites control our judiciary and they care nothing about consistency or the so-called “rule of law”. The “rule of law” to them is whatever they think is the proper political result, as hkd well states above. Look at the Prop. 8 case as an example of that, particularly when contrasted with the Massachusetts DOMA cases. You were one of the ones who liked the DOMA case because of its emphasis on the Tenth Amendment. But then we get a decision out of the 9th Circuit which goes in exactly the opposite direction, using an opposing rationale, because the judge wants to get to a similar result — support gay marriage.

    So if you think standing back and permitting the Muslims to build this mosque at Ground Zero will somehow protect the right of Christians in some future instance to be able to build their church, I’m afraid I no longer have that much faith in the political elite.

  • DonS

    hkd @ 22 & Joe @ 24: Joe, I quote your comment, to make a point: “If we empower the gov’t to stop the construction of this mosque because it offends “us,” how can we complain if they stop the construction of a church when we are no long the “us.””

    I absolutely agree with you. But, we ARE no longer the “us”. Political elites control our judiciary and they care nothing about consistency or the so-called “rule of law”. The “rule of law” to them is whatever they think is the proper political result, as hkd well states above. Look at the Prop. 8 case as an example of that, particularly when contrasted with the Massachusetts DOMA cases. You were one of the ones who liked the DOMA case because of its emphasis on the Tenth Amendment. But then we get a decision out of the 9th Circuit which goes in exactly the opposite direction, using an opposing rationale, because the judge wants to get to a similar result — support gay marriage.

    So if you think standing back and permitting the Muslims to build this mosque at Ground Zero will somehow protect the right of Christians in some future instance to be able to build their church, I’m afraid I no longer have that much faith in the political elite.

  • kerner

    I understand you feelings DonS @28, but what do you propose to do to stop this Mosque that wouldn’t do violence to the Constitution?

  • kerner

    I understand you feelings DonS @28, but what do you propose to do to stop this Mosque that wouldn’t do violence to the Constitution?

  • http://www.newreformationpress.com Patrick Kyle

    Peter said.”They for the most part have seen through Imam Rauf’s rhetoric of interfaith and cross-cultural understanding; further that the Ground Zero Mosque will be for many Muslims the site of a fabulous military triumph that will help their cause of spreading Shariah law around the world.

    This issue goes well beyond property rights. The arrogance and insensitivity of the Cordoba Initiative is stunning.”

    This is exactly the point. It is insult added to injury, by people whose sympathies lie with our deadly and formidable enemy.

    Kirk said,”. How does the way Saudi Arabia or Yemen or Algeria treat Christians have any bearing on this conversation?”

    Its bearing lies in the character of the religion we are dealing with, and their motives and purposes in putting up a mosque on this particular site. Furthermore, I am in no wise advocating emulation of any Islamic state. I am not against the building of Mosques, just the building of one on this particular sight.

    Kirk, aren’t you the slightest bit outraged that they are building what amounts to a ‘Victory Center’ right next to Ground Zero and naming it after their capitol during their conquest of Europe? Are you really glad that they are doing this? Maybe you are equally glad when fundamentalist Christians protest at Gay Pride parades, or the KKK shows up at civil rights rallies?

    Joe@24, Our government already has the power to take property from citizens. It is called eminent domain, and as much as I loathe it, what better use for it than a situation like this. Rather than throw poor people out of their homes to build a shopping mall, use it to derail an unwise and overly provocative project.

    As to the shoe being on the other foot and not being allowed to build churches, that is probably coming eventually anyway. If I am alive to see it, I will worship every Lord’s day whether we have a building or not.

  • http://www.newreformationpress.com Patrick Kyle

    Peter said.”They for the most part have seen through Imam Rauf’s rhetoric of interfaith and cross-cultural understanding; further that the Ground Zero Mosque will be for many Muslims the site of a fabulous military triumph that will help their cause of spreading Shariah law around the world.

    This issue goes well beyond property rights. The arrogance and insensitivity of the Cordoba Initiative is stunning.”

    This is exactly the point. It is insult added to injury, by people whose sympathies lie with our deadly and formidable enemy.

    Kirk said,”. How does the way Saudi Arabia or Yemen or Algeria treat Christians have any bearing on this conversation?”

    Its bearing lies in the character of the religion we are dealing with, and their motives and purposes in putting up a mosque on this particular site. Furthermore, I am in no wise advocating emulation of any Islamic state. I am not against the building of Mosques, just the building of one on this particular sight.

    Kirk, aren’t you the slightest bit outraged that they are building what amounts to a ‘Victory Center’ right next to Ground Zero and naming it after their capitol during their conquest of Europe? Are you really glad that they are doing this? Maybe you are equally glad when fundamentalist Christians protest at Gay Pride parades, or the KKK shows up at civil rights rallies?

    Joe@24, Our government already has the power to take property from citizens. It is called eminent domain, and as much as I loathe it, what better use for it than a situation like this. Rather than throw poor people out of their homes to build a shopping mall, use it to derail an unwise and overly provocative project.

    As to the shoe being on the other foot and not being allowed to build churches, that is probably coming eventually anyway. If I am alive to see it, I will worship every Lord’s day whether we have a building or not.

  • http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/ Carol-Christian Soldier

    This video has more concise information on the contents of the Qur’an than any source I have found…

    According to the Qur’an-if necessary- a Muslim can DECEIVE a non-Muslim if it helps Islam=TAQIYYA..
    Deceiving the ‘enemy’ (Christians) with whom Islam is at war is OK until all follow Sharia Law…
    Example of a lie—Islamic American Relief Agency-supposedly for disadvantaged children-American donor $$$$ actually went to terrorists!
    The mosque at Ground Zero is a finger in our eye-make no mistake about it!

    and speaking about Christians-how about Christian students thrown out of public schools because of their beliefs?
    http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/2010/07/two-christins-thrown-out-of-state.html
    Christians must stop being PC and stand UP!!- speak up!!
    C-CS

  • http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/ Carol-Christian Soldier

    This video has more concise information on the contents of the Qur’an than any source I have found…

    According to the Qur’an-if necessary- a Muslim can DECEIVE a non-Muslim if it helps Islam=TAQIYYA..
    Deceiving the ‘enemy’ (Christians) with whom Islam is at war is OK until all follow Sharia Law…
    Example of a lie—Islamic American Relief Agency-supposedly for disadvantaged children-American donor $$$$ actually went to terrorists!
    The mosque at Ground Zero is a finger in our eye-make no mistake about it!

    and speaking about Christians-how about Christian students thrown out of public schools because of their beliefs?
    http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/2010/07/two-christins-thrown-out-of-state.html
    Christians must stop being PC and stand UP!!- speak up!!
    C-CS

  • http://gollygeeez.blogspot.com/ Z

    Sensitivity is the word here, I think.
    There is nothing legally anybody can do about this mosque. The fact that muslims even thought of the idea is what’s terribly sad. And the fact that they could tear down a historic site and then build 15 stories in one year is astonishing. TRUST ME, in NYC, it could take a year for Plan Check…there has to be enormous money coming from somewhere for the building AND payola.
    My NYC cousin emailed me that NONE of her friends in the City had seem the demonstrations against the mosque on their local news! And, of course, it was not on the networks, either.
    I heard the Imam interviewed and he said “I don’t care what people think or say, I WILL get this mosque built and people can think whatever they want to.” $$$$
    It’s so unkind and unthinking to build it THERE ; that should be a tip off and warning if there ever was one.

  • http://gollygeeez.blogspot.com/ Z

    Sensitivity is the word here, I think.
    There is nothing legally anybody can do about this mosque. The fact that muslims even thought of the idea is what’s terribly sad. And the fact that they could tear down a historic site and then build 15 stories in one year is astonishing. TRUST ME, in NYC, it could take a year for Plan Check…there has to be enormous money coming from somewhere for the building AND payola.
    My NYC cousin emailed me that NONE of her friends in the City had seem the demonstrations against the mosque on their local news! And, of course, it was not on the networks, either.
    I heard the Imam interviewed and he said “I don’t care what people think or say, I WILL get this mosque built and people can think whatever they want to.” $$$$
    It’s so unkind and unthinking to build it THERE ; that should be a tip off and warning if there ever was one.

  • http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/ Carol-Christian Soldier

    and – Speaking of CHRISTIANS- how about the Greek Orthodox Church that was destroyed on 9-11 and is STILL waiting for the ‘red-tape’ to be released so it can be re-built!!!!!!!
    http://weaselzippers.us/2010/08/06/ground-zero-mosque-on-fast-track-but-greek-church-waits/
    I agree w/ Z–there a $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ situation here
    and may I add— a power/PC PROBLEM here that CHRISTIANS had better wake up to!!!
    C-CS

  • http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/ Carol-Christian Soldier

    and – Speaking of CHRISTIANS- how about the Greek Orthodox Church that was destroyed on 9-11 and is STILL waiting for the ‘red-tape’ to be released so it can be re-built!!!!!!!
    http://weaselzippers.us/2010/08/06/ground-zero-mosque-on-fast-track-but-greek-church-waits/
    I agree w/ Z–there a $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ situation here
    and may I add— a power/PC PROBLEM here that CHRISTIANS had better wake up to!!!
    C-CS

  • DonS

    Kerner @ 28: I don’t propose to do anything to stop the mosque, though I think public pressure intended to try to convince the property owners to do the right thing of their own accord is appropriate.

    All I was saying, after stating that I agree with the views of Joe and Cincinnatus on the law and the Constitution, was that we shouldn’t be so naive as to think that the liberal elite in charge of our media and political institutions (including the judiciary) care one whit about the Constitution or the rule of law.

  • DonS

    Kerner @ 28: I don’t propose to do anything to stop the mosque, though I think public pressure intended to try to convince the property owners to do the right thing of their own accord is appropriate.

    All I was saying, after stating that I agree with the views of Joe and Cincinnatus on the law and the Constitution, was that we shouldn’t be so naive as to think that the liberal elite in charge of our media and political institutions (including the judiciary) care one whit about the Constitution or the rule of law.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Patrick” It is insult added to injury by people whose sympathies lie with our deadly and formidable enemy.

    I quite agree that we are dealing with a deadly and formidable enemy. The trouble is that many, probably most, Americans are having trouble with understanding this enemy as formidable. At present among our leaders Newt Gingrich gets it. On 29 July he gave a major address at AEI in which he argued thoughtfully that the three most salient national security issues we face are: 1) a world-wide radical Islamic threat, 2) strengthening the American economy in order to have the resources to deal with this threat, and 3)the anti-American secular leftists who are adamantly opposed to dealing forcefully with the threat.

    Apropos of the Cordoba Initiative, Gingrich regards America itself as the most important front in the war against militant, radical Islam.
    The other fronts in order of importance are western Europe, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Afghanistan.

    Your view that this issue could be dealt with as a matter of eminent domain makes good sense.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Patrick” It is insult added to injury by people whose sympathies lie with our deadly and formidable enemy.

    I quite agree that we are dealing with a deadly and formidable enemy. The trouble is that many, probably most, Americans are having trouble with understanding this enemy as formidable. At present among our leaders Newt Gingrich gets it. On 29 July he gave a major address at AEI in which he argued thoughtfully that the three most salient national security issues we face are: 1) a world-wide radical Islamic threat, 2) strengthening the American economy in order to have the resources to deal with this threat, and 3)the anti-American secular leftists who are adamantly opposed to dealing forcefully with the threat.

    Apropos of the Cordoba Initiative, Gingrich regards America itself as the most important front in the war against militant, radical Islam.
    The other fronts in order of importance are western Europe, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Afghanistan.

    Your view that this issue could be dealt with as a matter of eminent domain makes good sense.

  • http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/ Carol-Christian Soldier

    up-date-on Christians-
    http://ibloga.blogspot.com/2010/08/muslims-kill-10-christians-for.html
    as to Crusades-which keeps being touted:
    Short History line:
    Christianity came BEFORE Islam-
    the first converts were Hebrew and Gentile-
    Hebrews and Gentiles owned property-
    followers of the false ‘prophet’ stole property-
    Christians wanted property back!
    followers of same ‘prophet’ invaded Christian lands (the Moors come to mind)-
    There are books written on accurate history —not re-written history…
    Find them! those who keep using the Crusade argument!
    C-CS

  • http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/ Carol-Christian Soldier

    up-date-on Christians-
    http://ibloga.blogspot.com/2010/08/muslims-kill-10-christians-for.html
    as to Crusades-which keeps being touted:
    Short History line:
    Christianity came BEFORE Islam-
    the first converts were Hebrew and Gentile-
    Hebrews and Gentiles owned property-
    followers of the false ‘prophet’ stole property-
    Christians wanted property back!
    followers of same ‘prophet’ invaded Christian lands (the Moors come to mind)-
    There are books written on accurate history —not re-written history…
    Find them! those who keep using the Crusade argument!
    C-CS

  • Gary

    @Kirk #19

    “Out of curiosity, though, since you seem to be against this mosque, what should be the standard for determining what should and shouldn’t be built? Should we draw the line at things you don’t like, or at things your really really don’t like? And why should we be willing to throw out the Constitution in this case and not in the case of, say state mandated health insurance purchases?”

    Kirk, my post was not about me.

    You seemed to pick up on my poorly and hastily written satire in regards to giving offense, but you also seem to have missed my veiled irony.

    If you really, truly believe that freedom should be used as an excuse to give known and deliberate offense, then I encourage you to–once the Muslim Center is built–to march up and down the sidewalk with a signboard depicting Mohammed citing peaceful surahs.

    Perhaps then you’ll come to know the irony of my statement.

    And if this offends you, well, just don’t throw the constitution or my government mandated health care out on me.

  • Gary

    @Kirk #19

    “Out of curiosity, though, since you seem to be against this mosque, what should be the standard for determining what should and shouldn’t be built? Should we draw the line at things you don’t like, or at things your really really don’t like? And why should we be willing to throw out the Constitution in this case and not in the case of, say state mandated health insurance purchases?”

    Kirk, my post was not about me.

    You seemed to pick up on my poorly and hastily written satire in regards to giving offense, but you also seem to have missed my veiled irony.

    If you really, truly believe that freedom should be used as an excuse to give known and deliberate offense, then I encourage you to–once the Muslim Center is built–to march up and down the sidewalk with a signboard depicting Mohammed citing peaceful surahs.

    Perhaps then you’ll come to know the irony of my statement.

    And if this offends you, well, just don’t throw the constitution or my government mandated health care out on me.

  • Gary

    For the record, I am not against a mosque being built at ground zero.

    What I am against is the hypocrisy and ignorance of people flippantly using “freedom” as an excuse to ignore history or to covertly advance PC political agendas.

  • Gary

    For the record, I am not against a mosque being built at ground zero.

    What I am against is the hypocrisy and ignorance of people flippantly using “freedom” as an excuse to ignore history or to covertly advance PC political agendas.

  • Peter Leavitt

    I see, you’re not against the mosque being built near Ground Zero; your’e against the flippant use of the term “freedom.” Such a wonderfully pious view . In the face of less than perfect behavior, you don’t really care about such a minor issue as a mosque being built near Ground Zero. Unless ordinary folk pull their act together, one ought not to take a strong position regarding radical Islamic insult.

  • Peter Leavitt

    I see, you’re not against the mosque being built near Ground Zero; your’e against the flippant use of the term “freedom.” Such a wonderfully pious view . In the face of less than perfect behavior, you don’t really care about such a minor issue as a mosque being built near Ground Zero. Unless ordinary folk pull their act together, one ought not to take a strong position regarding radical Islamic insult.

  • Cincinnatus

    The thing is, guys, is that the Constitution absolutely does not provide protection against offense. It simply does not, and that fact is our surest bulwark against the abrogation of free speech, free exercise, and free association, amongst other liberties.

    As Joe said above, the price of freedom is occasional offense. We have to put up with things that we do not like in order to ensure our ability to engage in behaviors that others may not like unmolested. The Supreme Court has ruled over and over and over that it’s acceptable to be in the KKK and advocate race war (Brandenburg v. Ohio), to burn a cross in view of African Americans (R.A.V. v. St. Paul), to practice “heterodox” religions freely (numerous cases), to hold a neo-Nazi demonstration in a majority Jewish community (National Socialist Party of America v. The Village of Skokie), to burn the United States flag (Texas v. Johnson), and to participate in a host of other behaviors and speech acts that are offensive or tasteless or unconscionable to typical Americans. This, I repeat, is the price of these freedoms, and far better for us that we tolerate anomalies and offenses rather than abrogate our common liberties at the behest of whoever happens to be the current majority. The First Amendment, it is quite truly said, is built on the backs of scoundrels.

    If this concept is at all confusing to you, I suggest you look up Oliver Wendell Holmes’s justifiably famous (and hence oft-cited) dissent in the case United States v. Abrams (1919, during the height of the Red Scare–a fitting propaedeutic for our own times, perhaps) in which he articulates precisely this concept under the terminology of “the marketplace of ideas,” which stipulates, in essence, that the best test of truth is its survival in competition with falsehood. The idea is that Truth wins. Rightly or wrongly (and I suspect there are weaknesses to this theory), it is on such a theory that much of our First Amendment and associated jurisprudence is founded.

    Like everyone else here, I find the idea of a mosque at this location tasteless. I do not doubt the radical connections of the Cordoba initiative. But upon what grounds, exactly, can you constitutionally and arbitrarily forbid the construction of an arbitrarily selected religious house of worship? Because that is precisely what the Bill of Rights protects against: arbitrariness. That’s why we composed these rights explicitly, you’ll recall, and in particular it’s why we have the First Amendment.

    Ask yourself this: what sort of precedent would prohibiting construction of this mosque set? What if, in the near future, Christians were not in the majority? Imagine a situation in Dearborn, Michigan, for instance, in which majority Muslims would have a nice piece of Supreme Court precedent to justify the prohibition of Christian churches! Shall we join Switzerland in banning the construction of minarets as well? Heck, it’s not currently uncommon for nominally Christian groups to make the ranks of terrorists watchlists; is it so much of a stretch to extend such thinking to authentic Christian groups as well given changes in the composition of our power structures and demographics?

    In short, Peter, Carol, and others: it’s talk like yours that leads to the death of freedom.

  • Cincinnatus

    The thing is, guys, is that the Constitution absolutely does not provide protection against offense. It simply does not, and that fact is our surest bulwark against the abrogation of free speech, free exercise, and free association, amongst other liberties.

    As Joe said above, the price of freedom is occasional offense. We have to put up with things that we do not like in order to ensure our ability to engage in behaviors that others may not like unmolested. The Supreme Court has ruled over and over and over that it’s acceptable to be in the KKK and advocate race war (Brandenburg v. Ohio), to burn a cross in view of African Americans (R.A.V. v. St. Paul), to practice “heterodox” religions freely (numerous cases), to hold a neo-Nazi demonstration in a majority Jewish community (National Socialist Party of America v. The Village of Skokie), to burn the United States flag (Texas v. Johnson), and to participate in a host of other behaviors and speech acts that are offensive or tasteless or unconscionable to typical Americans. This, I repeat, is the price of these freedoms, and far better for us that we tolerate anomalies and offenses rather than abrogate our common liberties at the behest of whoever happens to be the current majority. The First Amendment, it is quite truly said, is built on the backs of scoundrels.

    If this concept is at all confusing to you, I suggest you look up Oliver Wendell Holmes’s justifiably famous (and hence oft-cited) dissent in the case United States v. Abrams (1919, during the height of the Red Scare–a fitting propaedeutic for our own times, perhaps) in which he articulates precisely this concept under the terminology of “the marketplace of ideas,” which stipulates, in essence, that the best test of truth is its survival in competition with falsehood. The idea is that Truth wins. Rightly or wrongly (and I suspect there are weaknesses to this theory), it is on such a theory that much of our First Amendment and associated jurisprudence is founded.

    Like everyone else here, I find the idea of a mosque at this location tasteless. I do not doubt the radical connections of the Cordoba initiative. But upon what grounds, exactly, can you constitutionally and arbitrarily forbid the construction of an arbitrarily selected religious house of worship? Because that is precisely what the Bill of Rights protects against: arbitrariness. That’s why we composed these rights explicitly, you’ll recall, and in particular it’s why we have the First Amendment.

    Ask yourself this: what sort of precedent would prohibiting construction of this mosque set? What if, in the near future, Christians were not in the majority? Imagine a situation in Dearborn, Michigan, for instance, in which majority Muslims would have a nice piece of Supreme Court precedent to justify the prohibition of Christian churches! Shall we join Switzerland in banning the construction of minarets as well? Heck, it’s not currently uncommon for nominally Christian groups to make the ranks of terrorists watchlists; is it so much of a stretch to extend such thinking to authentic Christian groups as well given changes in the composition of our power structures and demographics?

    In short, Peter, Carol, and others: it’s talk like yours that leads to the death of freedom.

  • Cincinnatus

    The thing is, guys, is that the Constitution absolutely does not provide protection against offense. It simply does not, and that fact is our surest bulwark against the abrogation of free speech, free exercise, and free association, amongst other liberties.

    As Joe said above, the price of freedom is occasional offense. We have to put up with things that we do not like in order to ensure our ability to engage in behaviors that others may not like unmolested. The Supreme Court has ruled over and over and over that it’s acceptable to be in the KKK and advocate race war (Brandenburg v. Ohio), to burn a cross in view of African Americans (R.A.V. v. St. Paul), to practice “heterodox” religions freely (numerous cases), to hold a neo-Nazi demonstration in a majority Jewish community (National Soci@list Party of America v. The Village of Skokie), to burn the United States flag (Texas v. Johnson), and to participate in a host of other behaviors and speech acts that are offensive or tasteless or unconscionable to typical Americans. This, I repeat, is the price of these freedoms, and far better for us that we tolerate anomalies and offenses rather than abrogate our common liberties at the behest of whoever happens to be the current majority. The First Amendment, it is quite truly said, is built on the backs of scoundrels.

    If this concept is at all confusing to you, I suggest you look up Oliver Wendell Holmes’s justifiably famous (and hence oft-cited) dissent in the case United States v. Abrams (1919, during the height of the Red Scare–a fitting propaedeutic for our own times, perhaps) in which he articulates precisely this concept under the terminology of “the marketplace of ideas,” which stipulates, in essence, that the best test of truth is its survival in competition with falsehood. The idea is that Truth wins. Rightly or wrongly (and I suspect there are weaknesses to this theory), it is on such a theory that much of our First Amendment and associated jurisprudence is founded.

    Like everyone else here, I find the idea of a mosque at this location tasteless. I do not doubt the radical connections of the Cordoba initiative. But upon what grounds, exactly, can you constitutionally and arbitrarily forbid the construction of an arbitrarily selected religious house of worship? Because that is precisely what the Bill of Rights protects against: arbitrariness. That’s why we composed these rights explicitly, you’ll recall, and in particular it’s why we have the First Amendment.

    Ask yourself this: what sort of precedent would prohibiting construction of this mosque set? What if, in the near future, Christians were not in the majority? Imagine a situation in Dearborn, Michigan, for instance, in which majority Muslims would have a nice piece of Supreme Court precedent to justify the prohibition of Christian churches! Shall we join Switzerland in banning the construction of minarets as well? Heck, it’s not currently uncommon for nominally Christian groups to make the ranks of terrorists watchlists; is it so much of a stretch to extend such thinking to authentic Christian groups as well given changes in the composition of our power structures and demographics?

    In short, Peter, Carol, and others: it’s talk like yours that leads to the death of freedom.

  • Cincinnatus

    The thing is, guys, is that the Constitution absolutely does not provide protection against offense. It simply does not, and that fact is our surest bulwark against the abrogation of free speech, free exercise, and free association, amongst other liberties.

    As Joe said above, the price of freedom is occasional offense. We have to put up with things that we do not like in order to ensure our ability to engage in behaviors that others may not like unmolested. The Supreme Court has ruled over and over and over that it’s acceptable to be in the KKK and advocate race war (Brandenburg v. Ohio), to burn a cross in view of African Americans (R.A.V. v. St. Paul), to practice “heterodox” religions freely (numerous cases), to hold a neo-Nazi demonstration in a majority Jewish community (National Soci@list Party of America v. The Village of Skokie), to burn the United States flag (Texas v. Johnson), and to participate in a host of other behaviors and speech acts that are offensive or tasteless or unconscionable to typical Americans. This, I repeat, is the price of these freedoms, and far better for us that we tolerate anomalies and offenses rather than abrogate our common liberties at the behest of whoever happens to be the current majority. The First Amendment, it is quite truly said, is built on the backs of scoundrels.

    If this concept is at all confusing to you, I suggest you look up Oliver Wendell Holmes’s justifiably famous (and hence oft-cited) dissent in the case United States v. Abrams (1919, during the height of the Red Scare–a fitting propaedeutic for our own times, perhaps) in which he articulates precisely this concept under the terminology of “the marketplace of ideas,” which stipulates, in essence, that the best test of truth is its survival in competition with falsehood. The idea is that Truth wins. Rightly or wrongly (and I suspect there are weaknesses to this theory), it is on such a theory that much of our First Amendment and associated jurisprudence is founded.

    Like everyone else here, I find the idea of a mosque at this location tasteless. I do not doubt the radical connections of the Cordoba initiative. But upon what grounds, exactly, can you constitutionally and arbitrarily forbid the construction of an arbitrarily selected religious house of worship? Because that is precisely what the Bill of Rights protects against: arbitrariness. That’s why we composed these rights explicitly, you’ll recall, and in particular it’s why we have the First Amendment.

    Ask yourself this: what sort of precedent would prohibiting construction of this mosque set? What if, in the near future, Christians were not in the majority? Imagine a situation in Dearborn, Michigan, for instance, in which majority Muslims would have a nice piece of Supreme Court precedent to justify the prohibition of Christian churches! Shall we join Switzerland in banning the construction of minarets as well? Heck, it’s not currently uncommon for nominally Christian groups to make the ranks of terrorists watchlists; is it so much of a stretch to extend such thinking to authentic Christian groups as well given changes in the composition of our power structures and demographics?

    In short, Peter, Carol, and others: it’s talk like yours that leads to the death of freedom.

  • http://www.newreformationpress.com Patrick Kyle

    Cincinnatus@40 said, “In short, Peter, Carol, and others: it’s talk like yours that leads to the death of freedom.”

    These people ( Muslims involved in the Cordoba Initiative) aren’t just of a different “opinion” or “religion” they are intent on destroying our society and culture. As far as I am concerned they are at best a Fifth Column and at worst enemy combatants on our own soil. They are using the freedoms granted under the Constitution to undermine and eventually deny those very freedoms and protections.

    Lets hope truth wins out over falsehood… soon.

    As to Z’s comment, I agree. There is no way they could have accomplished so much in so little time in NYC without some serious cash to ‘grease the wheels’ as it were.

  • http://www.newreformationpress.com Patrick Kyle

    Cincinnatus@40 said, “In short, Peter, Carol, and others: it’s talk like yours that leads to the death of freedom.”

    These people ( Muslims involved in the Cordoba Initiative) aren’t just of a different “opinion” or “religion” they are intent on destroying our society and culture. As far as I am concerned they are at best a Fifth Column and at worst enemy combatants on our own soil. They are using the freedoms granted under the Constitution to undermine and eventually deny those very freedoms and protections.

    Lets hope truth wins out over falsehood… soon.

    As to Z’s comment, I agree. There is no way they could have accomplished so much in so little time in NYC without some serious cash to ‘grease the wheels’ as it were.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Patrick, few Americans have understand the sort of deceit that Imam Rauf is involved with by practicing taqiyya (dissimulation; you never owe the truth to unbelievers). Most Muslims are aware that Rauf is planting a Crescent flag near the heart of Ground Zero to celebrate Bin Laden’s great victory for the Islamic cause of universal Shariah law.

    A good article on this is The Mosque at Ground Zero, a Muslim View: Planting a Flag on an Islamic Conquest
    written by a moderate Muslin who is appalled at the arrogance and insensitivity of Imam Rauf, head of the Cordoba Initiative. The article, also, provides some interesting info on the financing:

    A previous Rauf project, Muslim Leaders of Tomorrow, clearly shows on its website that it is headed and funded by individuals from Saudi Arabia, the country that spawned fifteen of the nineteen jihad jockeys who rode the 9/11 planes of destruction. The funding for the mosque at Ground Zero is so far much murkier. All that has been publicly disclosed is that the support comes from unidentified sources in Saudi Arabia and Muslim-ruled Malaysia. Rauf reportedly says he paid $4.85 million for the property — in cash. Where exactly did this money come from? Was it Wahhabist-supporting Saudi sources, which have already funded many other mosques in New York City?”

    American property rights are very important, though in context of the present war against radical Islam theu should not be extended to this deadly and formidable enemy.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Patrick, few Americans have understand the sort of deceit that Imam Rauf is involved with by practicing taqiyya (dissimulation; you never owe the truth to unbelievers). Most Muslims are aware that Rauf is planting a Crescent flag near the heart of Ground Zero to celebrate Bin Laden’s great victory for the Islamic cause of universal Shariah law.

    A good article on this is The Mosque at Ground Zero, a Muslim View: Planting a Flag on an Islamic Conquest
    written by a moderate Muslin who is appalled at the arrogance and insensitivity of Imam Rauf, head of the Cordoba Initiative. The article, also, provides some interesting info on the financing:

    A previous Rauf project, Muslim Leaders of Tomorrow, clearly shows on its website that it is headed and funded by individuals from Saudi Arabia, the country that spawned fifteen of the nineteen jihad jockeys who rode the 9/11 planes of destruction. The funding for the mosque at Ground Zero is so far much murkier. All that has been publicly disclosed is that the support comes from unidentified sources in Saudi Arabia and Muslim-ruled Malaysia. Rauf reportedly says he paid $4.85 million for the property — in cash. Where exactly did this money come from? Was it Wahhabist-supporting Saudi sources, which have already funded many other mosques in New York City?”

    American property rights are very important, though in context of the present war against radical Islam theu should not be extended to this deadly and formidable enemy.

  • Cincinnatus

    You know what Peter? You’re right. I don’t think the fundamental rights of American citizenship should actually apply to all American citizens.

    I designate you as the arbiter of the list of those Americans who are not entitled to their constitutional and fundamental rights. Obviously, we’ll start with radical Muslims. No doubt “heartland isolationists” should also be included. How about Jehovah’s Witnesses, who don’t believe in serving in the military and voting? Communists of course do not deserve their rights. Why stop there? I’ve heard many in the “liberal media” say “unamerican” things, so they shouldn’t be permitted to exercise their rights either.

    Yup, refusing property rights by government fiat to individuals who have tenuous connections to groups that say bad things about America sounds like a fine policy indeed, and a fine precedent to set.

  • Cincinnatus

    You know what Peter? You’re right. I don’t think the fundamental rights of American citizenship should actually apply to all American citizens.

    I designate you as the arbiter of the list of those Americans who are not entitled to their constitutional and fundamental rights. Obviously, we’ll start with radical Muslims. No doubt “heartland isolationists” should also be included. How about Jehovah’s Witnesses, who don’t believe in serving in the military and voting? Communists of course do not deserve their rights. Why stop there? I’ve heard many in the “liberal media” say “unamerican” things, so they shouldn’t be permitted to exercise their rights either.

    Yup, refusing property rights by government fiat to individuals who have tenuous connections to groups that say bad things about America sounds like a fine policy indeed, and a fine precedent to set.

  • LAJ

    Cincinnatus
    Do you have to be nasty in your disagreement with Peter on this issue? Do you think freedom of religion also includes allowing muslim men to murder their daughters and beat their wives? It seems that you think the government ought not have any discretion in allowing property development so that would carry over to the freedom of muslim men to carry out honor killings, too, or does it?

  • LAJ

    Cincinnatus
    Do you have to be nasty in your disagreement with Peter on this issue? Do you think freedom of religion also includes allowing muslim men to murder their daughters and beat their wives? It seems that you think the government ought not have any discretion in allowing property development so that would carry over to the freedom of muslim men to carry out honor killings, too, or does it?

  • Cincinnatus

    LAJ, how is it that you construe my reply to Peter as “nasty”? I’m merely extending his logic in its only possible direction.

    Now then, as to your absurd argument. You say:

    “It seems that you think the government ought not have any discretion in allowing property development so that would carry over to the freedom of muslim men to carry out honor killings, too, or does it?”

    Is that a serious question? Amongst other topics upon which the Supreme Court has ruled over and over and over (see above) is that the right of free exercise does not grant anyone a right to break neutral and valid laws (see, e.g., Employment Division of Oregon vs. Smith, in which Native Americans are not permitted to partake of illegal hallucinogens off the reservation even though it’s part of their religious practices). Mormons are not permitted to engage in polygamy. Many jurisdictions prohibit Pagans from sacrificing domestic animals. No one is allowed to murder, steal, rape, etc., as part of their religion in the United States. Not to oversimplify matters, but this is a relatively settled matter.

    So then I have to ask: what exactly is your point? Here are things you are allowed to do by law–nay, by right–in the United States:

    -Freely exercise the tenets of your religion.
    -Say anti-American things
    -Own property and use it however you see fit within the law

    What the Cordoba Initiative is doing is ostensibly legal. They are exercising their rights. We don’t like it. Too bad. How on earth did you make the (il)logical leap from “freedom of religion,” which includes the right to have and use mosques, to “freedom to murder”? That is perhaps the most gargantuan, blatant, shameless red herring I’ve seen in quite a while. I feel silly even having to say this, but of course I do not believe that the freedom to exercise one’s religion includes the right to kill one’s family members. There are, as I mentioned above, distinct limits to our ability to practice all our rights, but–correct me if I’m wrong!–the freedom to worship openly in a building does not transgress one of those limits.

    So now that we’ve cleared that up, tell me, LAJ, what sort of “discretion” does the government have “in allowing property development”? Obviously, there are zoning codes and city planning commissions and all that sort of thing to ensure that development occurs in a safe and orderly fashion, but none of that obviously permits the government to prohibit the construction of a religious building simply because it is religious (this is yet another issue upon which the court has thankfully ruled over and over and over). So what are we doing to do? Pass an obviously arbitrary and unconstitutional restriction upon the construction of mosques? Forbid the freedom of association towards those groups that say mean things that we don’t like? Only allow “approved” religions to exercise their beliefs?

    So far, nothing anyone has said so far gives me any indication that there are constitutional grounds upon which the construction of this mosque could be prohibited.

  • Cincinnatus

    LAJ, how is it that you construe my reply to Peter as “nasty”? I’m merely extending his logic in its only possible direction.

    Now then, as to your absurd argument. You say:

    “It seems that you think the government ought not have any discretion in allowing property development so that would carry over to the freedom of muslim men to carry out honor killings, too, or does it?”

    Is that a serious question? Amongst other topics upon which the Supreme Court has ruled over and over and over (see above) is that the right of free exercise does not grant anyone a right to break neutral and valid laws (see, e.g., Employment Division of Oregon vs. Smith, in which Native Americans are not permitted to partake of illegal hallucinogens off the reservation even though it’s part of their religious practices). Mormons are not permitted to engage in polygamy. Many jurisdictions prohibit Pagans from sacrificing domestic animals. No one is allowed to murder, steal, rape, etc., as part of their religion in the United States. Not to oversimplify matters, but this is a relatively settled matter.

    So then I have to ask: what exactly is your point? Here are things you are allowed to do by law–nay, by right–in the United States:

    -Freely exercise the tenets of your religion.
    -Say anti-American things
    -Own property and use it however you see fit within the law

    What the Cordoba Initiative is doing is ostensibly legal. They are exercising their rights. We don’t like it. Too bad. How on earth did you make the (il)logical leap from “freedom of religion,” which includes the right to have and use mosques, to “freedom to murder”? That is perhaps the most gargantuan, blatant, shameless red herring I’ve seen in quite a while. I feel silly even having to say this, but of course I do not believe that the freedom to exercise one’s religion includes the right to kill one’s family members. There are, as I mentioned above, distinct limits to our ability to practice all our rights, but–correct me if I’m wrong!–the freedom to worship openly in a building does not transgress one of those limits.

    So now that we’ve cleared that up, tell me, LAJ, what sort of “discretion” does the government have “in allowing property development”? Obviously, there are zoning codes and city planning commissions and all that sort of thing to ensure that development occurs in a safe and orderly fashion, but none of that obviously permits the government to prohibit the construction of a religious building simply because it is religious (this is yet another issue upon which the court has thankfully ruled over and over and over). So what are we doing to do? Pass an obviously arbitrary and unconstitutional restriction upon the construction of mosques? Forbid the freedom of association towards those groups that say mean things that we don’t like? Only allow “approved” religions to exercise their beliefs?

    So far, nothing anyone has said so far gives me any indication that there are constitutional grounds upon which the construction of this mosque could be prohibited.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Cincinnatus, the specific issue here is whether a Muslin radical group, the Cordoba Initiative, whatever the citizenship of its members, has the right to build what in truth is an Islamic monument near Ground Zero that is regarded by the families of 9/11 victims as sacred ground.
    Beyond that I have no objection to property rights for any individuals or groups, including those of radical Muslims.

    Your argument at 43 involves a reductio ad absurdum.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Cincinnatus, the specific issue here is whether a Muslin radical group, the Cordoba Initiative, whatever the citizenship of its members, has the right to build what in truth is an Islamic monument near Ground Zero that is regarded by the families of 9/11 victims as sacred ground.
    Beyond that I have no objection to property rights for any individuals or groups, including those of radical Muslims.

    Your argument at 43 involves a reductio ad absurdum.

  • Gary

    Those of you who mistakenly believe that my point is that freedom should not be used if it offends people either misunderstood my post where I told Kurt to effectively go and get himself killed, or they don’t find such advice offensive. I don’t know which is more appalling.

    When you hold to a principle such as “freedom” when one is cunningly deceiving you, I find it an admirable thing, seeing as how you can not know the intentions of another. When you hold to a principle such as “freedom” when one is openly defiant, threatening, admitting they are using said principle to harm you, and there is evidence, I find it remiss and reprehensible. There eventually comes a time when one must fall back on an overarching principle, such as, oh, let’s say the right to life (and even this principle is taken away from an enemy, come time of war).

  • Gary

    Those of you who mistakenly believe that my point is that freedom should not be used if it offends people either misunderstood my post where I told Kurt to effectively go and get himself killed, or they don’t find such advice offensive. I don’t know which is more appalling.

    When you hold to a principle such as “freedom” when one is cunningly deceiving you, I find it an admirable thing, seeing as how you can not know the intentions of another. When you hold to a principle such as “freedom” when one is openly defiant, threatening, admitting they are using said principle to harm you, and there is evidence, I find it remiss and reprehensible. There eventually comes a time when one must fall back on an overarching principle, such as, oh, let’s say the right to life (and even this principle is taken away from an enemy, come time of war).

  • Peter Leavitt

    Gary, thanks for that clarification. My post at 38 was off base for which I apologize.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Gary, thanks for that clarification. My post at 38 was off base for which I apologize.

  • Cincinnatus

    Peter, that’s all fine and good. Again, I do not find the construction of this mosque appealing, and, to its builders and future congregants, it may symbolize triumph over Americans and some of the worst of what Islam has to offer–which is, of course, annoying at best. But guess what? Based on the information I can find, this mosque is going to be a mosque on private property, offering worship services, Islamic education, and whatever activities Muslims are inclined to engage in on their equivalent of the Sabbath. You cannot arbitrarily forbid the construction of a mosque simply because it is a mosque. Unless it turns out that the Muslims there are engaging in terrorist training activities rather than worship, there isn’t much to be done about it beyond the typical zoning regulations.

    Which is precisely why my argument was not a reductio ad absurdum. You see, in order for a logical claim to be deemed fallacious according to the rubric of the reductio ad absurdum, it must actually conclude in something absurd. But I did not draw such a conclusion. You argue, as best I can tell, that this mosque should not be permitted because the Cordoba group says various un-American things and may or may not have radical connections. As far as constitutional rights go, this is the equivalent of saying you will not permit the mosque to be built because you don’t like the people building it. This is obviously unacceptable based upon existing jurisprudence, etc. So let’s say your side won and the case were appealed and we (implausibly) ended up with a Supreme Court precedent that says it is acceptable for the government to prohibit the construction of religious buildings for those whom “we don’t like” or who do un-American things or potentially have radical connections. Then what? Is it really absurd to suppose that someday such a precedent could be used against “us” just as much as it could now be used against Muslims? Fortunately, the only “absurd” part of that argument is the hypothetical case of the Courts upholding such a prohibition against the construction of religious facilities, so this mosque is most probably going to be built, and, unless it can be proven that it is being used as a site for criminal activity or activity that is a legitimate danger to national security, we’re going to have to deal with it.

    So far, we have no proof, to my knowledge, of such criminal activity. It’s a mosque. It’s an arrogant display of victory, no doubt, on “sacred” ground. Mr. Bloomberg is, as usual, a moron. It’s offensive and annoying to typical Americans. But it still seems to be activity that is constitutionally protected. There is no indication that, as Gary claims, these Muslims are using the principle of freedom to “harm us,” much less kill us–unless your definition of “harm” includes having your poor feelings hurt. And really, Gary? Are you insinuating that the Muslims who want this mosque have no right to life? Really?

    If there is some way that this mosque can be prevented within neutral, objective standards of zoning, then so be it. If lines have been improperly crossed, if zoning board members have been, er, “encouraged” to approve an imprudent project, then fine. But all this talk of “STOPPING THE MOSQUE” just because it is a mosque is something for which our Constitution does not provide the space. If it’s so important to you, start a fundraising drive and gather enough money to buy the property from the Cordoba group and build your own church.

  • Cincinnatus

    Peter, that’s all fine and good. Again, I do not find the construction of this mosque appealing, and, to its builders and future congregants, it may symbolize triumph over Americans and some of the worst of what Islam has to offer–which is, of course, annoying at best. But guess what? Based on the information I can find, this mosque is going to be a mosque on private property, offering worship services, Islamic education, and whatever activities Muslims are inclined to engage in on their equivalent of the Sabbath. You cannot arbitrarily forbid the construction of a mosque simply because it is a mosque. Unless it turns out that the Muslims there are engaging in terrorist training activities rather than worship, there isn’t much to be done about it beyond the typical zoning regulations.

    Which is precisely why my argument was not a reductio ad absurdum. You see, in order for a logical claim to be deemed fallacious according to the rubric of the reductio ad absurdum, it must actually conclude in something absurd. But I did not draw such a conclusion. You argue, as best I can tell, that this mosque should not be permitted because the Cordoba group says various un-American things and may or may not have radical connections. As far as constitutional rights go, this is the equivalent of saying you will not permit the mosque to be built because you don’t like the people building it. This is obviously unacceptable based upon existing jurisprudence, etc. So let’s say your side won and the case were appealed and we (implausibly) ended up with a Supreme Court precedent that says it is acceptable for the government to prohibit the construction of religious buildings for those whom “we don’t like” or who do un-American things or potentially have radical connections. Then what? Is it really absurd to suppose that someday such a precedent could be used against “us” just as much as it could now be used against Muslims? Fortunately, the only “absurd” part of that argument is the hypothetical case of the Courts upholding such a prohibition against the construction of religious facilities, so this mosque is most probably going to be built, and, unless it can be proven that it is being used as a site for criminal activity or activity that is a legitimate danger to national security, we’re going to have to deal with it.

    So far, we have no proof, to my knowledge, of such criminal activity. It’s a mosque. It’s an arrogant display of victory, no doubt, on “sacred” ground. Mr. Bloomberg is, as usual, a moron. It’s offensive and annoying to typical Americans. But it still seems to be activity that is constitutionally protected. There is no indication that, as Gary claims, these Muslims are using the principle of freedom to “harm us,” much less kill us–unless your definition of “harm” includes having your poor feelings hurt. And really, Gary? Are you insinuating that the Muslims who want this mosque have no right to life? Really?

    If there is some way that this mosque can be prevented within neutral, objective standards of zoning, then so be it. If lines have been improperly crossed, if zoning board members have been, er, “encouraged” to approve an imprudent project, then fine. But all this talk of “STOPPING THE MOSQUE” just because it is a mosque is something for which our Constitution does not provide the space. If it’s so important to you, start a fundraising drive and gather enough money to buy the property from the Cordoba group and build your own church.

  • Cincinnatus

    *Apparently I took Gary’s words out of context and applied them improperly? If so, ignore that part in my last comment.

  • Cincinnatus

    *Apparently I took Gary’s words out of context and applied them improperly? If so, ignore that part in my last comment.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Cincinnatus, the reductio as absurdum of your argument at 45 had to do with your remark that I wished to set up as an arbitrary authority to judge the property rights of such groups as heartland isolationists or Jehovah’s Witnesses.

    Again, I have no problem with property rights allowed for radical Muslims, though the government of the city of New York would have every right to bar a known radical Islamic organization from building what any knowledgeable Muslim knows to be really a monument to a great radical Islamic military triumph.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Cincinnatus, the reductio as absurdum of your argument at 45 had to do with your remark that I wished to set up as an arbitrary authority to judge the property rights of such groups as heartland isolationists or Jehovah’s Witnesses.

    Again, I have no problem with property rights allowed for radical Muslims, though the government of the city of New York would have every right to bar a known radical Islamic organization from building what any knowledgeable Muslim knows to be really a monument to a great radical Islamic military triumph.

  • http://www.newreformationpress.com Patrick Kyle

    What will end up happening is that private citizens are going to take matters into their own hands after it becomes apparent their elected leaders will not give redress to their grievances. I in no way condone this, but don’t see how it will be avoided. In case no one has noticed, a lot of people are really angry (and not just about this situation) and will only be pushed so far. Never in my life have I seen or heard things like I have recently.

  • http://www.newreformationpress.com Patrick Kyle

    What will end up happening is that private citizens are going to take matters into their own hands after it becomes apparent their elected leaders will not give redress to their grievances. I in no way condone this, but don’t see how it will be avoided. In case no one has noticed, a lot of people are really angry (and not just about this situation) and will only be pushed so far. Never in my life have I seen or heard things like I have recently.

  • Gary

    @Cincinnatus #49

    We are not at war with the people wanting to build the mosque; that was just an example of how “rights” can be overridden by other “rights”. Also, as far as I know, the builders of the mosque are not threatening to harm us. Then again, the moment someone attempts to say anything to the contrary, they get shouted down for trying to be the “arbiter of freedom.”

    I’d like to hear some facts.

  • Gary

    @Cincinnatus #49

    We are not at war with the people wanting to build the mosque; that was just an example of how “rights” can be overridden by other “rights”. Also, as far as I know, the builders of the mosque are not threatening to harm us. Then again, the moment someone attempts to say anything to the contrary, they get shouted down for trying to be the “arbiter of freedom.”

    I’d like to hear some facts.

  • Peter Leavitt
  • Peter Leavitt
  • Peter Leavitt

    Sorry for not closing off the second link above.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Sorry for not closing off the second link above.


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X