Thursday, October 24, 2013
After spending years in the political wilderness, being cast as outsiders -- even un-American -- Muslim New Yorkers are in an unfamiliar position: they're set to have power.
Monday, October 17, 2011
The developer of an Islamic cultural center near the World Trade Center site and the owner of the building are in a dispute over rent.
Monday, August 01, 2011
Despite the worldwide controversy that erupted last year over Sharif El-Gamal’s plan to develop a mosque and Muslim cultural center near the World Trade Center site, El-Gamal is spearheading a new effort to make the proposal a reality.
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
A State Supreme Court judge heard arguments Tuesday in a lawsuit meant to block development of Park51, the proposed mosque and Islamic center near Ground Zero. But he often seemed skeptical of arguments made by the plaintiff and suggested he did not want to challenge the authority of city administrators who had cleared the way for the controversial project.
Sunday, March 13, 2011
About 120 demonstrators gathered in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, to protest a proposed mosque that opponents argue will dramatically alter the quality of life in the neighborhood. The protest, organized by about 80 supporters of the mosque, was within shouting distance of a counter-protest and drew locals and nationally prominent critics of Islam.
Wednesday, March 09, 2011
Rep. Peter King (R-NY) is set to hold a long-awaited (and for some, long-lamented) hearing on Muslim extremism in the United States Thursday. Specifically, the hearing will focus on what relationship, if any, exists between radical Islamists, American mosques and other domestic Muslim organizations.
Leading up to this week's hearings, a pro-Muslim demonstration was held in New York City on Sunday, where King was vilified for his insistence on such a hearing. However, another demonstration in favor of King's hearing was held at the same time, during which protesters said it was time for an inquiry into the activities of Muslim Americans.
The list of attendees for the Thursday hearing was released to the public on Monday. Here's a look at who is slated to speak.
Wednesday, March 02, 2011
An organization linked to Park 51, the controversial Islamic cultural center and mosque near Ground Zero, suddenly cancelled a Wednesday night performance of a play featuring September 11 family members.
Friday, January 14, 2011
The public face behind the controversial Islamic cultural center near the World Trade Center, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, will be stepping down from his role. The non-profit organization Park51 announced Friday that Imam Abdallah Adhami will be replacing Rauf as senior advisor.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Before the year 2010 fades out with the melting snow, it's worth taking a few moments to think about the events of the past 12 months. Here in the New York area we've had intense political squabbles, a continued economic downturn, transit hikes, a tornado -- and it all began with a cataclysmic event overseas that affected thousands of New Yorkers. Revisit the full year in sound in the montage here, and be sure to watch the slideshow below to relive some of New York's key political moments of 2010.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
For those who consider Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf the embodiment of evil -- a wily terrorist sympathizer bent on bringing "stealth jihad" to the United States -- the sight of him in a light blue cashmere sweater may feel incongruous. But these days, the imam seems a lot more relaxed than he did this summer, at the height of the furor over Park 51.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
As noted last week, opponents of Park 51 were planning to hold their first protest in months on Tuesday. The protest was meant to be held in a committee room at 250 Broadway, during a City Council hearing on Wal-Mart. But last week, that hearing was postponed until January 12, so the Park 51 protest has also been put off.
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Former president George W. Bush was on the Today Show with Matt Lauer, promoting his new book, Decision Points, and he was pushed to take a stand on Park 51, the Islamic cultural center and mosque near Ground Zero. As you may recall, at the peak of the controversy this summer, a number of supporters of Park 51 called on him to speak up, in hopes that he would voice support for the project and perhaps chide the most virulently anti-Islamic speakers.
He didn't then, and he refused to today, saying he didn't want to have his words on the issue -- or any other issue -- constantly compared to those of President Obama. Lauer tried to elicit some response, any response on the issue, but didn't get very far.
LAUER: Well, without saying whether they should build the community center or not, are you disappointed by the increase in anti-Muslim rhetoric in this country that we’ve seen recently?
BUSH: I think most Americans welcome freedom of religion and honor religions. I truly do. And the problem with the arena today is a few loud voices can dominate the discussion and I don’t intend to be one of the voices in the discussion.
See this video clip of the interview, from Think Progress.
The full interview is also worth watching, if only to see Kanye West apologize for calling Bush a racist, once upon a time. I think we need to impose an immediate moratorium on Kanye West apologies.
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
When he's not chasing down stories for ABC News, Andy Field acts as a media and presentation coach for clients who want to look good on Oprah or 20/20. A little over a week ago, his classroom was a hotel banquet hall in Arlington, Virginia, and his students were several dozen Muslim activists from across the country. The students were of mostly of Arab or South Asian descent, with the men sporting beards and blazers and many of the women wearing hijabs, or headscarves. Their goal: learning how to present themselves and their faith better on-camera.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
Did you watch "The View" Thursday morning? Neither did I. But it's certainly worth watching this clip, if only to see two of the hostesses-with-the-mostesses, Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg, actually walk off the set of their own show. Is that allowed??
The tete-a-tete-a-tete took place over Park 51/Cordoba House/Ground Zero Monster Mosque. Whoopi and Joy didn't like O'Reilly's opposition to the project, and decided they'd had enough when he said Muslims attacked the Twin Towers (as opposed to saying "extremists" did it).
For extra credit, watch this longer clip at Entertainment Weekly. After the two storm off, Barbara Walters slams them for doing so, then turns to O'Reilly and slams him for equating all Muslims with terrorists. He apologizes, kind of. And Joy and Whoopi return to the sofa after about 90 seconds, suggesting that this was ultimately just a carefully coordinated bathroom break.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
The developers behind Park51, the Islamic cultural center and mosque two blocks from Ground Zero, have been conspicuously low-key about the project. But they've finally given us a slightly better sense of what they're planning, with the release of 3 renderings: one exterior shot and two interiors. All in all, the images suggest a highly contemporary visual aesthetic, dominated by an outer shell that could best be termed web-like or exoskeletal. The architectural firm is Soma.
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Yesterday, during a press conference held by Muslim leaders, voicing support for Park51, one of the organizers, Zaheer Uddin, noted that Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf hadn't attended their one-day summit on the project. Security concerns, according to Uddin, had kept Rauf away. According to CNN, he's now avoiding New York City and is getting protection from the NYPD.
Monday, September 20, 2010
National and local Muslim leaders held a one-day summit on Park 51 Monday, voicing support for the proposed mosque and Islamic community center. The group released a statement, saying its signatories "stand for the constitutional right of Muslims, and Americans of all faiths, to build houses of worship anywhere in our nation as allowed by local laws and regulations."
Monday, September 20, 2010
There was a time when the immigration policies of various European countries might have seemed well outside the purview of a humble blog such as this, but Park 51 has changed all that. After all, the star of the September 11 rally opposing Park 51 was Geert Wilders, the Dutch politician whose Freedom Party has rapidly gained power on the basis of his anti-Islamic proposals, including taxing headscarves and banning the Koran. The prime organizer against Park 51, Pam Geller, also helps run Stop Islamization of America, part of a network of groups that includes Stop Islamization of Europe, Stop Islamization of Denmark (and England, and France, etc.).
So Americans are now participating in a much broader debate on the integration of Muslims into Western society.