More thoughts on Ground Zero and Mosque

I live in walking distance from Ground Zero and the proposed center. I watched the towers smoking on that day from my place of work hear 34th Penn Station looking down 7th Avenue. I walked all the way to Houston Street where I found a police barricade to prevent anyone from entering the area. It was a terrible tragedy but I personally do not see the area as “sacred ground” although I can understand why many might view the site in this fashion. I try to look at Islam from the perspective of all the many cultures which are predominantly Muslim (e.g. Morocco, Tunisia, Senegal, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Turkey, etc) and therein see the great diversity of practice and belief so that I do not see Islam as ONE MONOLITHIC ideology and hence I do not see ISLAM as having attacked the WTC but rather a small group with certain extreme sectarian beliefs. Therefore I do not see the proposed site as THAT close to ground zero. I respect the judgment of people like Obama and Bloomberg who support the constitutional freedom of Muslims to build such a center. I think more problems are created than are solved by demonstrating and protesting against the center. I do not think that two wrongs can make a right and so I think it is a grave mistake of those who blame “Islam” should themselves resort to terrorist retaliations. I feel that the only hope for the world is for all sides to accomplish some kind of progressive reform and learn to live and accept each other and our differences in relative harmony. We cannot keep our minds in the 7th century of Mecca nor in the 12th century of the Crusades nor in the 15th century of the Inquisition nor in the 20th century of the Holocaust and the Cold War.

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