Because freedom can't protect itself
The mosque at Ground Zero is stirring up such an appalling controversy. I was happy to hear Bloomberg speak up though when Sarah Palin gave her two cents on the issue (obviously not in favor of the project, calling it an "unnecessary provocation") http://www.newslook.com/videos/231374-bloomberg-rejects-palin-calls-to-stop-ny-mosque
The entire re-writing of zoning rules? Isn't that normally something the ACLU is against?
What would you do if this happened to your life? - Joseph Barber's MySpace Blog http://goo.gl/EjxN
@Maggie "The entire re-writing of zoning rules? Isn't that normally something the ACLU is against?"
Not when the the previous zoning laws were prohibiting equal liberty for all Americans, whether intentional or not.
The plan to build a huge Mosque so close to Ground Zero is just bad taste.
Build it uptown.
What is the ACLU's position on the Lower Manhattan mosque?
The zoning law was not prohibiting equal liberty for all Americans, as it simply required that a place of worship have at least 1 acre of land. This applied to all places of worship, regardless of the religion. Whether or not Afghanistan Muslim refugees have suffered hardships beyond that of other religions in America should not give them leeway to bend and break laws that have their purpose. You and the Maine Civil Liberties Union have paved the way for a group of people to have special privileges based on their religion....sounds a little bit like the opposite of what you promote, which is equality. Changing a city's entire zoning laws so that one group can illegally misuse a property, including paving a lot on my neighbor's property with no permits, is promoting inequality amongst religious groups and human beings in general.
Did you ever consider that 1/3 of an acre is too small to house any consistently occurring gathering of people? Do you know that every Friday, 25-50 cars park on Washington Avenue and Fall Brook Street surrounding the Mosque, causing safety issues at the intersection and property damage of lawns and plants? This is because 1/3 of an acre is not enough to house the number of people expected at a religious gathering. Do you know that the owners consistently approach the surrounding neighbors to buy our properties so that they may expand? And have attempted to use the tactic of stating "we are rebuilding a bigger Mosque so your property value will only go down?" Does this sound anything to you like usual bigwig corporate bullying to you?
To me and to many neighbors in the surrounding area, this has absolutely nothing to do with Islamic discrimination. It has to do with the fact that this area of the neighborhood simply cannot accommodate any large business or institution smack dab in the middle of it. I don't care if it's the Assemblage of the World's Cutest Puppies or the Home of the Tastiest Calorie-Free Sundae, we simply cannot accommodate that number of people. It's is disruptive and destructive to the community.
In your desire to "protect" religious freedom, you have afforded a group of people a privilege that no other group has been afforded. In fact, you have created inequality in the neighborhood. What is your hope across America? That simply because a group of people have suffered hardships and practice an under-served religion, they deserve the right to disobey state and city laws? There is nothing that says anyone cannot follow zoning laws and purchase an acre of land in the same area and create the world's greatest, most awesome and highest-attended Mosque. The acreage requirements and zoning laws for any place of gathering are there to protect the citizens who live in the area so that they may enjoy their home peacefully and with minimal disturbance from population and noise. You have tread all over that in your and the Mosque's desire to overstep the boundaries that everyone else has to follow. You fought for a special allowance for a certain group of people and this is discrimination and inequality at its worst, because it's all under the guise of doing good.
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