Archive for anti-mosque

‘Anti-Mosque Activity’ in More than Half of US States

Posted in Loon People, Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , on May 29, 2012 by loonwatch

Rev. Stacy Walker-Frontjes, of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in DeKalb, Ill., talks with Mohammed Labadi as she tours the house that serves as the group’s mosque.

Anti-Mosque activity has been rampant in the USA over the past five years:

Proposed mosques spark opposition in some U.S. communities

(USA Today)

Since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, which were carried out by hijackers from Arab countries, animosity toward Muslims sometimes has taken the form of opposition to construction of mosques and other Islamic facilities. National debate erupted over plans for a community center that became known as the “Ground Zero mosque” in Lower Manhattan.

In the last five years, there has been “anti-mosque activity” in more than half the states, according to the American Civil Liberties Union. Some mosques were vandalized – a $5,000 reward is being offered in a 2011 Wichita mosque arson case – and others were targets of efforts to deny zoning permits.

Mosque opponents often raise concerns about traffic and parking, but Daniel Mach, director of the ACLU’s freedom of religion program, says they can be “sham arguments” that mask anti-Muslim sentiment.

Mosque opponents often raise concerns about traffic and parking, but Daniel Mach, director of the ACLU’s freedom of religion program, says they can be “sham arguments” that mask anti-Muslim sentiment.

“I hope that eventually there will be greater acceptance for all faiths, including Islam,” Mach says.

Read the rest…

Surprise: EDL Member Christopher Payne Pleads Guilty to anti-Mosque Graffiti

Posted in Loon Violence with tags , , , , , on June 28, 2011 by loonwatch
EDL-Stoke

Are any of you shocked that an EDL member did this? Wow, I can’t believe that a group of thugs who hate Muslims and regularly throw their hands up in Seig Heils would attack a mosque! Of course both Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer continue to defend them. (via. Europeans Against Islamophobia)

Man sprays anti-mosque graffiti at West Bridgford site

A 25-year-old English Defence League member has pleaded guilty to daubing hate graffiti on land being considered as a site for a mosque.

Christopher Payne of Hucknall admitted spraying the graffiti but denied putting a pig’s head on the site in West Bridgford, Nottinghamshire.

He appeared at Nottingham Magistrates’ Court and will be sentenced on 21 July.

Police went to the property on 23 June where the slogan “No Mosque Here” was found spray painted on the ground.

Pig’s head

Payne pleaded guilty to causing racially or religiously aggravated alarm, dissent or distress and causing racially aggravated criminal damage.

Three other men aged 19, 21 and 31, have been arrested and questioned about the incident.

Payne, of Beardsmore Close, Hucknall, who is an events planner for the English Defence League, told the court that he sprayed the slogan but did not put the pig’s head on the grassland.

He was granted bail with a curfew but ordered to stay out of West Bridgford and not to go within 200m of a mosque.

He has also been told not to have any public association with the English Defence League.

A member of the public reported finding the graffiti near Collington Way in West Bridgford on Thursday.

Anti-Mosque Response in New Jersey

Posted in Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , on February 2, 2011 by loonwatch

Racist reaction to mosque plan a too-familiar public response

Editorial

Let’s be honest — the fervent opposition to a proposed mosque in Bridgewater is being fueled in significant part by racism.

There’s no point in pretending otherwise. There’s no reason to jump through rhetorical hoops to suggest that it’s really about traffic or quality of life or noise or any of the other complaints that usually accompany new projects.

No, this is about American fears of Muslims and their “strange” religious beliefs and the terrorist acts of a small subsection of Islamic fanatics. One resident said the mosque “represents a coming in and taking over an entire community by the Islamic World.”

Not exactly an enlightened comment, although that only highlights the thoughts of one person. Still, is anyone going to try and argue that such apparent prejudice is an anomaly, a unique bit of ugliness in a community that would otherwise widely embrace a mosque? Where the only project concerns are about logistics and infrastructure?

We’ve seen this kind of resistance before in Central Jersey and we’ll see it again, whenever a proposed new “foreign” house of worship emerges. It even happened in Bridgewater recently when the Sri Venkateswara Hindu temple on Route 202/206 generated resistance in the township and from neighboring Raritan Borough.

 

Eric Allen Bell: Anti-Mosque Protester Calls Police on Film Maker [Video]

Posted in Anti-Loons, Loon Media with tags , , , , , , , on September 21, 2010 by loonwatch

Kevin Fisher has been a staunch and vocal opponent to the planned Murfreesboro, Tennessee Islamic Cultural Center. In this video he responds quite strangely to a normal greeting from documentary film maker, Eric Allen Bell.

VIDEO: Mosque opponent hospitalized following verbal dispute with filmmaker

A well-known opponent of the proposed Islamic Center of Murfreesboro was hospitalized over the weekend following a verbal confrontation with a documentary filmmaker at a Tea Party event, all of which was caught on tape.

Mosque opponent Kevin Fisher can be seen — in a video posted on Youtube by documentarian Eric Allen Bell — telling Murfreesboro Police dispatchers that he was being “racially harassed.”

Watch the video by clicking here.

The video was recorded by Bell Saturday at the Rutherford County Tea Party’s Constitution Day event. It also shows Fisher asking a Murfreesboro Police dispatcher if he could “strike” Bell because he is within “arms reach.”

Bell, who is documenting the controversy surrounding the mosque, contends the only thing he said to Fisher was “Hi Kevin.” The documentary is tentatively entitled “Not Welcome.”

The latest controversy comes at a time of intense debate over the proposed mosque on Veals Road at Bradyville Pike. Hundreds packed into the Rutherford County courthouse last week to make their opinions about the mosque known.

Fisher, who could not immediately be reached for comment Monday, announced the same day that he and others had filed a lawsuit against the county in reference to the planning commission’s handling of the Islamic center. He is represented by attorney Joe Brandon, Jr.

The lawsuit called for a temporary injunction prohibiting further work at the mosque site until the issue could be resolved. Rutherford County Chancellor Robert Corlew denied the request for a restraining order to halt the construction Friday.

A Computer Aided Dispatch report on file at the Murfreesboro Police Department shows Fisher called 911 at 4:18 p.m. Saturday in reference to being “diabetic and feeling faint.” Fisher, a scheduled guest speaker at the event, also told the dispatcher that he was surrounded by four people who were reportedly harassing him.

The video recorded by Bell shows Fisher walking towards the Rutherford County Courthouse on the Public Square. Bell approaches Fisher and says “Hi Kevin.” Fisher responds “You are racially harassing me, leave me alone.”

Later, while on his cell phone, Fisher told dispatchers he was feeling “oppressed. I’m the only African American here …” Someone could be heard laughing in the background after Fisher made the statement.

Fisher then asked the dispatcher if he had the right to strike Bell, whom he said was within arms reach.

“Right now he is within arms reach,” Fisher said. “I have the legal right to strike him, can’t I? Then I suggest you get someone here as soon as possible because I don’t know what he might do.”

He then stressed to the dispatcher again that he was being harassed, the video shows.

“That’s racial,” he said. “I’m the only African American out here and he feels a duty to harass me.”

Read more of this story in Tuesday’s print edition of The Daily News Journal.

— Mark Bell, 615-278-5153

A NOTE TO READERS: Documentary filmmaker Eric Allen Bell is not related to The Daily News Journal reporter Mark Bell.

 

Germany: Reinhard Werner’s Anonymous Mosque Watchers

Posted in Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , on July 14, 2010 by loonwatch

Reinhard Werner belongs to the not so Anonymous Mosque Watchers group. Supposedly a group who observes Mosques to make sure there isn’t any terrorism going on. This article is a hoot. (hat tip: Kashmiri Nomad)

Germany’s Anonymous Mosque Watchers

By Hauke Goos

Reinhard Werner doesn’t trust Islam. The 70-year-old German is part of a group which keeps tabs on mosques across Germany, monitoring them for what he calls an “intolerant Islam of terror.” Over the years, he has gained a certain amount of notoriety.

Reinhard Werner is a few minutes early, but because he doesn’t want to be noticed, he stands outside on the sidewalk in front of the mosque, trying to look as inconspicuous as possible.

 

It’s Friday afternoon in Munich’s Pasing neighborhood and men are scurrying past Werner on their way to Friday prayers. All of them, in Werner’s eyes, are enemies. He claims that the mosque is spreading what he calls an “intolerant Islam of terror.”

“Do you see the sign over the entrance?” he says.

The letters “DITIB” are printed on the sign. DITIB, an acronym for the Turkish-Islamic Union for Religious Affairs, is the umbrella organization for roughly 900 mosque congregations in Germany. It is controlled by a Turkish government organization based in Ankara, the Office for Religious Affairs, making it indirectly answerable to the Turkish prime minister. “A military mosque,” says Werner.

“Do you see that the letter ‘I’ in DITIB resembles a minaret? And that the minarets look like missiles?” he asks, beseechingly. It isn’t always easy for Werner to make himself understood.

Feeling a Kinship

Werner is a member of the “Anonymous Mosque Observers,” a group of Muslims who fled to Germany from Muslim countries because they came into conflict with religious rules.

Although Werner is not a Muslim himself, nor is he fleeing anything, he feels a kinship with Muslims who have fled their native countries. These Muslims trust their more settled Muslim counterparts about as much as former US President George W. Bush trusted terrorist leader Osama bin Laden. They keep tabs on what goes on in mosques because they want to be sure that they are still safe in Germany.

Werner came to the group in a somewhat roundabout way. For 30 years, he was a teacher at a secondary school in Munich, where some of his classes consisted entirely of foreign students. According to Werner, most of the Turkish students had a negative-to-hostile attitude toward the West. They were hard to reach and difficult to convince, he felt.

Since then, he has been fighting for religious freedom, but insists that it should come with certain conditions. The most important of those, he says, is that Muslims, like members of other faiths, pledge to uphold the German constitution.

Of the 36 mosques in Munich, nine are in Werner’s “observation area.” He reports everything he sees and hears to the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), Germany’s domestic intelligence agency. The BfV, however, doesn’t seem to be taking him very seriously, or at least it hasn’t found his reports to be sufficiently convincing to take any action.

Blood-Soaked Tyrants

After a while, Werner slips into the mosque. In the lobby, about 25 men are drinking tea and eating pita bread as they wait for the service to begin. Werner orders tea, drops three cubes of sugar into his cup and points to a picture next to the tea station. It depicts Ottoman leaders from six centuries. Blood-soaked tyrants are being glorified here, Werner whispers. He points to the second picture from the right in the bottom row and identifies the man depicted as Abdul Hamid II, known abroad as the “Great Assassin.”

A portrait of Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the modern Turkish republic and the Turkish army, hangs on another wall, next to a television set. According to Werner, the state and the church are not truly separated in Turkey because the state influences the church and the military influences the state. “Turkey is a theocracy,” says Werner.

Then he walks up the stairs to the prayer room. The sermons, says Werner, are often about rejecting the Western way of life.

Just before Werner reaches the door to the prayer room, a young man approaches him and asks him whether he is Mr. Werner. Werner nods.

“You are banned from the premises,” the young man says, looking serious. He tells Werner that he must ask him to leave the mosque immediately. It is moments like this that show Werner that his work is at least being taken seriously.

He has acquired a certain amount of notoriety over the years, years marked by the attacks of Sept. 11, the Taliban, the Danish cartoon controversy, the ban on minarets in Switzerland and opposition to the construction of new mosques in Germany. Werner, now 70, had studied the Koran. Suddenly he was considered an expert, and he was in demand.

A Little Disappointed

He is sometimes asked to speak to Christian congregations, but he is hardly ever invited back. Perhaps it’s because Werner is so combative. Germans don’t like conflict.

And perhaps everything would be easier if social coexistence could be organized the way teams are organized on the football field. Then there would be agreements and rules, and anyone who broke the rules would be penalized. Second-time offenders would be sidelined. But that isn’t the way society works, which is why Werner has been fighting his battle for more than two decades.

There are many movements within Islam, he says. The most aggressive, he says, is “Mohammedan Islam,” — and, he claims, it is also the only movement that is building mosques. This, Werner argues, is why it is not the construction of minarets which should be banned, but the construction of mosques.

 

On his way home, Werner stops at the mosque again to ask why he has been banned from the premises. He hopes to somehow use the ban to reinforce his message. He — as a representative of Germany, the West and democracy — feels excluded.

This time an older man with white hair and a white beard is waiting for him. The ban was a misunderstanding, the old man says, and smiles.

A minute later, Werner is standing on the street below the mosque again, relieved that he will be able to continue observing the mosque in the future. But he also seems a little disappointed.

Translated from the German by Christopher Sultan

 

Another Sunday, Another Protest Against the Mosque

Posted in Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on June 21, 2010 by loonwatch

The hysteria of the anti-Mosque crowd continues in Staten Island.

Another Sunday, another protest against proposed Staten Island mosque

by Virgina N. Sherry

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. –  Midland Beach residents opposed to the sale of the empty convent of St. Margaret Mary parish to a Muslim group rallied yesterday afternoon for the second straight Sunday in front of the 2½ -story building, and this time other Staten Islanders joined them, carrying their own protest signs.

“I’m here to support this community because of how frightened everyone is of this group coming in to the neighborhood — the terrorism factor is a big part of it,” said Suzanne Adamo of Castleton Corners, who was born and raised in Midland Beach. She was referring to the Muslim American Society, a national organization whose Brooklyn/Staten Island chapter signed a contract last month with Rev. Keith Fennessy, the parish pastor, to purchase the convent.

“To me, they’re too closed,” added her husband Sal Adamo. “We don’t know them. It’s up to them to show us what and who they are. It’s very frightening.”

One sign on bright yellow cardboard read in black capital letters: “Muslim Brotherhood You Are Not Welcome Here.”

A major issue that has energized opponents of the convent-to-mosque conversion is the alleged links of MAS founders to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, and the belief of many neighborhood residents that the Muslim Brotherhood is itself a terrorist organization.

The U.S. State Department maintains a publicly available list of foreign terrorist organizations. The most current list, dated January 2010, includes the names of 45 groups from around the globe. The Muslim Brotherhood is not on the list.

‘NO FOREIGN TIES’

“Everyone in this country has safety concerns, and I think that’s fair and valid, especially in the wake of September 11,” MAS local spokeswoman Lana Safah said in a phone interview on last night.

“We want to reiterate that we have no ties or affiliations to any foreign entities whatsoever,” she added. “And we have maintained the same position from the beginning — we are willing to speak to whoever wishes to speak to us.”

“I’m very against the way this sale went through — it was deceitful and sinful,” said Carolyn Pinto of New Dorp, who attended St. Margaret Mary elementary school. “This is a Christian community. The people here are the church. Archbishop [Timothy] Dolan has hurt the Catholics of Midland Beach, and it cuts like a knife.”

Anthony Sagona, also New Dorp, saw no nuance. “We don’t want the mosque. This is a nice neighborhood and we hope to keep it that way,” he said, adding that he was born in Midland Beach and lived there for 50 years. “I hope the deal falls through.”

Native Islander Christine Marra of Grant City said she was “opposed to the sale of the convent to a non-Christian organization,” and held a hand-written sign that read “Tell the Archdiocese No Mosque. Boycott the Basket.”

“I feel betrayed by the New York Archdiocese,” she commented. “I’ve been donating money my entire adult life with the intention of spreading the Gospel and the Christian message.”

TENSION OVER A BANNER

Some division in the anti-mosque crowd became apparent when a long banner was unfurled, emblazoned with color photographs and the words “We Will Never Forget!” It referenced the killing of Coptic Christians in Egypt, where they remain a beleaguered minority without full civil rights, including freedom of worship and the right to freely build churches.

The U.S. State Department, in its 2009 “Report on International Religious Freedom,” said that Egypt’s constitution “provides for freedom of belief and the practice of religious rites,” but added that “the Government restricts these rights in practice. Islam is the official state religion, and Shari’a is the principal source of legislation.”

One of the people holding up the banner was Magdi Saweres, a Cairo-born Copt who has lived in Midland Beach for the last eight years.

“You see..they [Islamic extremists] killed these kids in Egypt,” he explained to someone reading the large banner.

“That’s not our issue! They should not be here!” said Rosemary Vasquenz, an officer of the Midland Beach Civic Association, who then walked away in disgust.

“We’re not in Egypt — we’re in the U.S.” another resident chimed in.

“They’re on our side, believe me,” intervened Thomas Bosco of Grasmere, who was helping to hold up the large banner.

Unlike the first rally last Sunday, yesterday’s included a uniformed police presence, and officers restricted protestors to the sidewalk after many spilled out onto Greeley Avenue, raising signs and cheering when drivers of passing vehicles slowed down and honked horns in support.

The rally, with about 175 people at its height, was periodically interrupted by a lone counter-demonstrator standing across the street from the convent. His shouts were ignored by the vociferous yet peaceful crowd.

It concluded at 1:30 p.m., with the crowd chanting “USA! USA!” as they dispersed.

MAS REACTION

The Advance received this written statement from MAS in reaction to yesterday’s rally:

“We as Americans understand and fully appreciate the need to feel safe, and the right and necessity to look into the background of any party or group.

“However, it is equally as important for individuals to do their homework, not just rely on the research and propaganda of other parties.

“We have and continue to make ourselves available for any sit downs or questions, be it with the Church board, Community Leaders or individuals in the community. We are committed to communication and dialog, and are willing at any time to address any valid community concerns.”

Archbishop Dolan said it best on his blog: “Yes, it is acceptable to ask questions about security, safety, the background and history of the groups hoping to build and buy… What is not acceptable is to prejudge any group, or to let fear and bias trump the towering American virtues of hospitality, welcome, and religious freedom.”

 

Right Wing Radio Host Hopes NY Mosque is Blown Up

Posted in Feature, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , on June 10, 2010 by loonwatch
Michael Berry is un-American

I just discussed the profound double standards in the mainstream media here.  Here’s another one: right wing radio host Michael Berry says that he hopes someone blows up a mosque should one be constructed.  Remember when the Revolution Muslim clowns posted on some obscure internet forum saying that the producers of South Park might end up being killed?  These radical Muslims didn’t say they would kill anyone, or even that they hope for that (although you can and should read between the lines).

Yet, now we have someone who has upped the ante and said that he hopes a mosque is blown up.  Imagine the ruckus if a Muslim American leader said that he hopes a church or synagogue should be blown up.  The story would go viral, and the mainstream media would whip up a storm of crazy.  Meanwhile, Michael Berry says that he hopes a mosque should be blown up, and the story barely gets any coverage whatsoever.  It certainly doesn’t evoke a sense of national panic as a similar case would should Revolution Muslim publish a statement saying “we hope such-and-such Jewish synagogue is blown up.”

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJDizmNgrd0 300 250]

When Berry asks “what is your real name”, by this he means to say that only people with white names are real Americans.  Sorry to say, buddy, but our president is named Barack Hussein Obama.  Don’t like that?  Then you can leave this country.  If you don’t believe in our pluralistic society, then you can go to the Israeli Occupied Territories, the last place on earth where racial apartheid is in place.  But here in the U.S., we believe your name can be Barack Hussein Obama, Sanjay Gupta, or Muhammad Ali…and such people are just as American as Bob, Pete, and Michael.

As for his tribalistic response dividing the world into “us vs. them”, this is the same type of mentality exemplified by the jihadists.  What do Muslim Americans–many of whom were born and raised in the United States–have to do with what happens in Saudi Arabia?  Are all Muslims the Borg?  Are they somehow one sentient being?  If some Muslims in Saudi Arabia do something then that somehow falls on the shoulders of all Muslim Americans?  If some Muslims in Saudi Arabia prevent churches in Saudi Arabia, then Muslim Americans should pay for that and not be allowed to build mosques in America?  What is ironic is that this typifies the tu quoque fallacy that Robert Spencer and the rest of the Islamophobic world invokes when questioned about their two-faced hypocrisy.

Glenn Greenwald responded to this “tribalistic response” by pointing out that we wouldn’t fair so well in such an “us vs. them” comparison when it is considered that we are invading at least five Muslim countries, occupying two, launching illegal attacks against others, killing thousands of Muslim civilians, aiding the state of Israel in the enforcement of the most inhumane blockade today, etc. etc. etc.  The list goes on and on.  If you want the Official List and Score Chart, go ask Usama bin Ladin for it, because he likes tallying up the rights and wrongs of Team Muslim vs. Team Christian, which is the “us vs. them” mentality that is shared by Islamophobes and radical Muslims alike.

Berry’s guest, Tony, is wrong about one thing: Tony is not just as American as Berry.  Tony is way more American.  This country was founded upon the freedom of religion, which includes the right to build mosques.  Michael Berry is quite simply un-American if he can’t understand that.