Message Of The Mosque Within Our Midst


The roaring controversy over the proposed Islamic Centre, blocks from "Ground Zero" - site of the September 11 World Trade Centre terrorist attacks - ultimately resolves to a single issue. Do the precepts of the Constitution apply to all people - always - or are exceptions to be made ?

We, the Co-Founders of Flower Power Creative, were eyewitnesses to the cataclysm. We live 3 blocks from the site. On that fateful morning - which had started as a perfect September day - we saw the planes careening overhead and stood together, watching the impossible become real, as the Towers collapsed to heaps of rubble.

Our dear friend and attorney walked out of the WTC PATH Terminal, looking up to see people jump from the Towers as an alternative to being consumed by the flames that rose up into the sky and over New York.

Progressive political figures - among them New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Senator Chuck Schumer and Congressman Jerrold Nadler, whose district includes the location of the proposed Centre - all favor development of the Centre as a statement of freedom and tolerance. Families of those who perished on September 11 have also expressed the opinion that the sacrifice of their loved ones should be seen in the light of fundamental human rights and values.

Opposition to the Centre is driven mainly by right wing reactionaries who seem to thrill in distorting facts and truth beyond recognition. Their goal - as always - is to eradicate anyone and anything that isn't exactly like them. They claim that President Obama is secretly a Muslim, that he is not an American citizen, and that all Islamics are bent upon destroying America and Western Civilisation. There is no nuance in their ignorance and hate - no room for differentiation. All of us who lived through - and learned from - the incredible event would ask them : Will you ever know the other side of peace and understanding ? Will you ever come home to what truly matters most about America - letting freedom ring ?

Well-intended, gentle souls - such as New York's Governor Patterson and Archbishop Timothy Dolan - have urged compromise. They propose a modest relocation of the mosque, a few or so blocks further away from the WTC site. But there appears to be no room for accommodation. The issue is highest stakes - all or nothing.

As survivors of September 11, we were permanently transformed by the experience - treasuring every moment of life since to a degree that we would never have conceived to be possible. We marvel - as we pass the site each day - that we can once again derive inspiration from the promise and progress our part of New York expresses to the world. We believe that freedom is the ultimate value, and that the Islamic Centre should stand as a symbol of tolerance and understanding. The mosque, as part of the mosaic that makes New York so fascinating, should include a shrine to all those who perished in the tragedy -  as a profound demonstration of remembrance, respect and good will.  







 "I support the Creative Vision of Flower Power Creative in World Artists For Peace and...

Pattie Boyd



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