Opposition to Ground Zero Mosque Happens to Coincide With Other Anti-Mosque Movements

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Photo: Timothy Clary/AFP/Getty Images

Proposals for the construction of new mosques around the country — from California to Wisconsin to Tennessee — are being met with rabid hostility, despite the glaring lack of a ground-zero-related excuse. So what kind of excuses are anti-mosque activists using? We hate Islam! Okay, that's not much an excuse at all. But when a mother grizzly senses that something is wrong — i.e., believes anything an e-mail or website tells her — she will protect her cubs.


“As a mother and a grandmother, I worry,” Ms. Serafin said. “I learned that in 20 years with the rate of the birth population, we will be overtaken by Islam, and their goal is to get people in Congress and the Supreme Court to see that Shariah is implemented. My children and grandchildren will have to live under that.”

“I do believe everybody has a right to freedom of religion,” she said. “But Islam is not about a religion. It’s a political government, and it’s 100 percent against our Constitution.”

Thankfully, the protesters of these mosques are frequently outnumbered by people willing to stand up for religious freedom. Even so, unabashedly bigoted constitutional scholars like Ms. Serafin are clearly part of an increasingly widespread anti-mosque movement. (One that ignores studies that show mosques are actually a deterrent to radical Islam.) It's just too bad their Islamophobia has to taint the principled, sensitivity-based opposition to the ground-zero mosque, which just happens to be occurring at the same time.

Across Nation, Mosque Projects Meet Opposition [NYT]