Yes, I have great concerns about it. I’m actually really astounded that the debate over the mosque takes place within the context of a discussion about tolerance. We have in the United States over 2,300 mosques. In the New York area alone there are probably a couple hundred. There are certainly several scores of mosques in any event. If you were to go to Mecca or Medina, you wouldn’t see any Christian churches. You wouldn’t see any Jewish synagogues. In fact, you wouldn’t actually be able to go to Mecca or Medina at all if you’re not Muslim. Non-Muslims are deemed not fit to set their feet on the ground in those Islamic holy sites. So I think if we’re going to argue this thing on the tolerance meter, we’re pretty far ahead on that score and we don’t have anything to apologize for.
Secondly, the mosque plan has all the subtlety of a sledgehammer. They want to call it the Cordoba Islamic Center. Cordoba is the name of the Islamic caliphate that conquered Spain and ruled it often brutally for over half a millennium. So, you know it’s pretty clear just in the choice of name what’s going on here. It’s the Islamist strategy that’s centuries old, which is to build their icons on top of the icons of the people that they’ve either conquered on intend to conquer.
So it seems to me that it’s fairly obvious that this is going on. It also seems to me that many, if not most, well meaning Muslims don’t want to see this happen either. They don’t want this fight. The reason they don’t want it is because there’s really common sense involved in this as much as anything else. No one is saying that they shouldn’t be able to have mosques or that Muslims shouldn’t be able to worship in the United States. What we’re saying is a mosque in that particular site would be grossly inappropriate. I don’t know what’s happened to America, but if this were, say 1943 or 1944, or I daresay even today, you wouldn’t have a Shinto temple built at Pearl Harbor. People would say there are plenty of places in America for a Shinto temple but that isn’t one of them. That’s not bigotry. That’s not intolerance. That’s plain common sense and respect for people who lost their lives on those sites.
Go read the full interview.