Controversy over the NYC Mosque

I found out about the Anti-Defamation League’s decision to oppose the proposed construction of a mosque and community center two blocks from Ground Zero on Paul Krugman’s blog yesterday. He was incensed, attacking the ADL for hypocrisy. After reading the front page New York Times article this morning, I was furious as well and wrote a very angry blog post about the subject. But then I realized one shouldn’t write when angry and scrapped the post. Perhaps better to leave it alone.

But as I was perusing the blogosphere this evening, I found a very evenhanded analysis of the situation from Nate Silver, which I why I’m writing this post. His post is mostly about how pathetic a job the media has done reporting on this subject (big surprise). He also gives what seems to be the only comprehensive explanation of the facility and, in passing, points out that other faiths already have houses of worship in the area. Please do read his post.

I would only add two points. The first is that we should not hold moderate America Muslims accountable for September 11th; they had about as much to do with it as the rest of us did. They are not guilty because they share their faith with over 1.2 billion other human beings. But my second point is more important. Is there anyone who reads this blog who does not think that moderate Muslims should be speaking out against extremism? Is there anyone on this blog who does not think moderate Muslims should be reaching out to build ties with people of other cultures and faiths? Yet, when they try to do so, we vilify them. If we want to work with American Muslims and moderate Muslims worldwide to combat terrorism, we need to grow up.