We are three New Yorkers who hail from three different faiths but cherish the religious and cultural pluralism of New York City. We would like to inform Mark Williams of the national Tea Party and all those who strongly object to the proposed Muslim cultural center near the World Trade Center that Islam is a wonderful, faith-filled religion just like Judaism and Christianity.
Islam did not bring down the Twin Towers on Sept. 11, 2001. What brought the towers down were 19 men who were deeply misguided and brainwashed by an ideology that is not blessed in the teachings of the prophet Mohammed in the sacred Koran. To believe otherwise is to equate Catholicism with the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995 by Irish American Catholic, Timothy McVeigh, or to connect Judaism with the 1977 Son of Sam murders with a Jewish American, David Berkowitz.
Therefore, please do not condemn Islam due to the crazed, morbid actions of zealots who abused the Koran and the free will given to them by God.
After a careful period of inquiry, we have discovered that the particular proposed development in question is based on the spirit of peaceful co-existence with other faith traditions. (And: It happens not to be a “mosque,” as many are calling it, but a multi-purpose cultural center; even if it were a mosque, however, it would be an institution to welcome, not fear.)
Father Brian Jordan, Richard Shierer and Muhammed Luquman in the New York Daily News, 23 April 2010