Wednesday, August 18, 2010

When religious tolerance goes too far

I know everyone is sick to death of hearing about this mosque “controversy”, but this must be brought to the attention of those who may not be aware that New York Gov. David Paterson made a proposal that if the people behind the Cordoba mosque and community center agree to move their facility somewhere else in New York City, the state would be happy to pay for it.
Gov. David A. Paterson said Tuesday that he would consider offering state-owned property to the developers of a $100 million Muslim center and mosque if they decided to build it farther from ground zero.
As this AU article points out, Paterson seems to have forgotten that the U.S. Constitution and the New York Constitution contains strong language barring any diversion of public resources for religious purposes. (Article XI, for example, bans public support of institutions “wholly or in part under the control or direction of any religious denomination….”)

“I understand that some people are not happy with the prospect of an Islamic center opening in Manhattan, but relocating it to public property raises significant legal issues,” said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United. “Whether the governor is talking about a gift of public land or a sweetheart deal that gives one religious group a special right to purchase government property, it’s wrong.
“In America,” continued Lynn, “government does not subsidize religion or give religious groups preferential treatment.”
I agree with Lynn who said the solution to this dilemma is to respect the Muslim group’s right to build its center on private property using private funds even if we may not like it or believe it to be disrespectful and insensitive. There is nothing legally we can do to stand in their way. But to try to bribe them away with government land is illegal, and a direct violation of Separation of Church and State.

1 comment:

tina FCD said...

This shit is crazy. Build the damn's legal. I just wish they stopped building ANY religious places of worship.