Detroit’s religious leaders unite against Terry Jones as pastor battles to hold anti-Muslim rally

Dearborn demonstration

With some of metro Detroit’s biggest political and religious leaders united behind Muslims in Dearborn, Florida Pastor Terry Jones is expected to appear in court this morning for a jury trial that could determine whether he can hold a rally at the largest mosque in the city.

This “bigot does not represent” us, Imam Hassan Al-Qazwini, head of the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn, declared to a crowd of about 700 on Thursday at a rally that drew U.S. Rep. John Dingell, a Dearborn Democrat, and the local heads of the Catholic and Episcopal churches.

Al-Qazwini’s mosque is where Jones wants to rally today against what he calls “the radical element in Islam.” Jones appeared in court Thursday and refused to post a bond for the massive security effort Dearborn says it would have to deploy if Jones were allowed to rally. The judge then ordered the trial.

As Jones addressed reporters during a chaotic day, Dearborn residents shouted at him. “Shame on you!” yelled Leyla Abdul-Ghani, 40, who is Muslim. “We are decent, hardworking people.”

Detroit Free Press, 22 April 2011

See also “Koran-burning pastor’s gun discharges outside of Detroit TV station”, Fox News, 22 April 2011

For Pamela Geller’s take on the situation, see “Sharia trumps Constitution in Michigan: Terry Jones denied permit to rally, could face arrest”, Atlas Shrugs, 21 April 2011