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Opponents pack hearing on mosque near ground zero

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First, I dont understand the drist of this article. Is it talking about the status of the new building which is to replace the Twin Towers, or is is talking about the plans to build a mosque there, or both? Its confusing.

Of course, the new building will be a landmark. Regarding the building of a mosque and Islamic centre on the same site, though, 100% opposed to that. It would be unthinkable, and an utter abomination to buid abything Islamic in that area, which was destroyed by evil Islamic extremists on 9/11. I hope Americans in their millions will rise up and oppose these plans. I have no doubt they will, though probably their current President will support the plans, given his pedigree and recent pathetic overtures towards Muslims and their "contributions" (sic) to the history of America.

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Yeah, the article is confusing...not sure how it could be considered fit for printing unless JT just wants people to make up stuff and argue.

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The way I read it, the plans are to build a mosque close to the new "Landmark Towers" but the building thre might be declared as a landmark.

Don't see where the problem lies. Of course you could say "bad taste" as the attacsk were done by Muslims, said that I am sure that some muslims worked in the towers too when they were attacked.

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here is a link to know more on this...http://www.wnd.com/?pageId=119328

Appears that it is a building, steps from the former twin towers site..what used to be Burlington Coat Factory, the

worshipers currently occupy the building!

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The site for the mosque is something like two block from ground zero; if the planned renovations are allowed, the increased hight should make ground zero visible from the top of the building. Its not like they are building it on ground zero.

I can understand the reactions of some survivors and family members of victims, but really there is no real justification to oppose this beyond "ARRRRGH MOOSLIMS!!11!11!!11!!!"

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True, opposing would be based on how ppl feel, emotions, but legally "me thinks" it can be done, seeing how it is not on ground zero..their for how can it be considered a national landmark...

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"While the protest might be new, the issue most certainly is not. Islamic anything in the USA is viewed as suspect, borne of absolute ignorance. How many Congresscritters call it Mohammedanism? You want to see how favourably Islam compares to fundie TV Christianity? Check out an American brother: http://americanbrother.blogspot.com/

The kind of "national unknowing" is exemplified by:

Don't see where the problem lies. Of course you could say "bad taste" as the attacsk were done by Muslims, said that I am sure that some muslims worked in the towers too when they were attacked.

..from Zenny11 above. These fit in with the terminology of war which demonizes the enemy, as in Viet-Nam, Charlie Kong, Kooks etc. etc. The epithets for Muslims are legion, and widely used by US forces, take your pick.

How simplified it has all become: "It was Muslims!" everyone shouts, before they even hear the rest of the informing sentence. Even the authors of the 9.11 Commission Report, Senators Walt & Mearscheimer, admit they don't have enough evidence to assign blame to Muslims. At all: http://www.takeourworldback.com/itwasntmuslims.htm They would know, as they had access to the best information the White House permitted. 28 pages of that report were redacted by Cheney's office, on the grounds it would threaten national security.

This mosque, is actually a prayer room which, unlike mosques, will also be open to non-Muslims. But that would require quieting the chatter of the rabble-rousers, and thinking for oneself, something now frowned upon in America, as that might mean you'd be a terrorist! And a Muslim one at that!

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I don't really see the problem with having a mosque near Ground Zero as long as it's legal.

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This is an opportunity. The mosque needs a plaque stating that the perps of 9/11 were no true Muslims and now reside in Hell, with no virgins but rather demons keeping them company, or something to that effect. The whole thing will stike a huge blow to the terrorist fundies.

But I predict most Americans won't have it, and for half of them it will be because they actually relish the conflict and violence that will surely come with it.

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"The mosque needs a plaque stating that the perps of 9/11 were no true Muslims"

So could I excuse the Iraq War by stating George Bush and Dick Cheeney, et al were no true Americans?

"But I predict most Americans won't have it, and for half of them it will be because they actually relish the conflict and violence that will surely come with it."

That may be the most bigoted statement I have read this year. If I had said that about Muslims you would have been all over me like white-on-rice.

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So, a building two blocks from ground zero gets hit with some debris and then some conservatives (at least one Republican is mentioned) believe that, because of that, the building should attain the sacred/exalted status of a landmark, which would make it difficult for some Muslims to alter the building to make a prayer center.

Of course, the Americans opposing the Muslims are acting out of emotionalism not reason or principles -- and then do what Americans are so good at doing: manipulating the laws to get their way.

It would be one thing to go around and mark every single building touched by any debris from the WTC (there was a LOT of debris flying around in the aftermath) and try to get them all declared as monuments. But, no, let's go after the one building where Muslims want to create a place to pray and concoct some way to deny them that place of worship.

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MistWizard did not make a blanket statement about all Americans, but what he said is absolutely true: a great percentage of Americans put great stock in violence and warfare. We Americans invest very, very heavily in it, calling it "security."

It's when certain Americans project their own lust for violence into making blanket statements about all Muslims that I believe reasonable objections can be raised.

Values are not values until they are put to a test. And the test of the American values of freedom of worship and private property reveals the shallowness and hypocrisy of certain individuals who attempt to use the legal system to suppress someone of an "unfavored minority" when they attempt to exercise those rights.

Would these same people be in court if a Christain prayer center was planned? There. Sham revealed. Game over.

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MistWizard: "they ( Americans ) actually relish the violence and conflict"

yabits: "a great percentage of Americans put great stock in violence and warfare"

Wow, this thread is really going downhill with patently absurd comments like these.

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"It's when certain Americans project their own lust for violence into making blanket statements about all Muslims that I believe reasonable objections can be raised."

What American lust for violence are you referring to? You really should back that up with some references.

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What American lust for violence are you referring to? You really should back that up with some references.

Really? How about U.S. history as a reference? Only we've become much more adept at masking it from ourselves today -- as in how the hatred for Islam is now masked as an attempt to save a "landmark."

Other refs: Blowback by Chalmers Johnson and Endless Enemies by J. Kwitny. For philosophical underpinning, try The Wisdom of Insecurity by Alan Watts.

Turn on any TV set or look through a video game rental store. This is a nation that absolutely adores and is enraptured by violence.

There is a tremendous tension and anger with many Americans who have invested so much in a military machine that they can't use often enough when they get to feeling "pushed around" by some little guy.

The lust for violence always starts with a need for conflict, and that starts by actively trying to create an enemy. Some little guy wants a place to pray? Huh, not on my landmark with his nasty religion!

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@yabits. All I can say is that if you think America's opposition to Muslims building a mosque near the site of a Muslim-backed attack that took the lives of 3,000 people is a sign of America trying to create an enemy is that we will agree to disagree. I'd say more but I have already been warned for being inflammatory.

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All I can say is that if you think America's opposition to Muslims building a mosque near the site of a Muslim-backed attack that took the lives of 3,000 people is a sign of America trying to create an enemy is that we will agree to disagree.

OK, but not openly trying to create an enemy at this point, but to foster the spirit of conflict. You do that often enough and you'll have more enemies than you know what to do with. Problem solved, if you want to keep up military spending at high levels.

The basic and time-honored principles enshrined in our laws and Constitution relating to freedom of worship and private property are being attacked here. To me, the most truly "American" thing we could do is to endorse and support our fellow compatriots who happen to be Muslim in their efforts to provide a place of worship in a building they have purchased.

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I guess the only question I would like to ask these Muslims who wish to build this mosque is whether they consider themselves to first be "Americans" or "Muslims." If you read the Koran---it calls for the destruction of all non-Muslims---and believe it, you really can't be a Muslim.

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OK my 2 cents;

Lets me put things into another context.

Recently in a Canadian city the city commission voted to sell land worth $100,000 for $10,000 to a Muslim group to build a Mosque many people objected to this and the vote was overturned some claimed it was discrimination but most said they objected not to the Mosque but to the fact that the City was selling the land at such a deep discount!

Now if the objection here are truly over "Landmarking status" then fine but if it is just the fact that this is an Islamic center then maybe there is a problem.

But I have to ask the question, Knowing who and what the 9/11 attacker were and there (messed up) motives, I have to wonder what the organizers of this centre were thinking would happen?

I cannot stop and wonder if they were just looking for controversy from the start.

I would compare this to opening a gun shop across from the Columbine memorial yes it is legal but it would be bound to cause objections and anger.

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Sorry, my last line should have read: If you read the Koran---it calls for the destruction of all non-Muslims---and believe it, you really can't be an American Muslim.

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Yabits..."And the test of the American values of freedom of worship and private property" this I agree with what happens to freedom of religion?

The 14th amendment

The Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees the religious civil rights.[8] Whereas the First Amendment secures the free exercise of religion, section one of the Fourteenth Amendment prohibits discrimination, including on the basis of religion, by securing "the equal protection of the laws" for every person: “ All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

The Court stated that "Laws are made for the government of actions, and while they cannot interfere with mere religious belief and opinions, they may with practices."

I can't say I am happy that they are setting up a mosque, so close to ground zero... but again it would be for emotional reasons, I do believe In freedom of speech, religion, as well..the "Civil Rights Act of 1964, prohibiting discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin by federal and state governments as well as some public places"

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"But I have to ask the question, Knowing who and what the 9/11 attacker were and there (messed up) motives, I have to wonder what the organizers of this centre were thinking would happen?

I cannot stop and wonder if they were just looking for controversy from the start."

Very astitute observation!

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controversy from the start."

Also a good point...I am sure they did.

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Yabits: OK, but not openly trying to create an enemy at this point, but to foster the spirit of conflict. You do that often enough and you'll have more enemies than you know what to do with.

But time and time again we've seen the harshest words in any conversation come from your mouth about Americans. After listening to the way you talk it's hard to disagree that Americans love conflict because you're an American and you often lead the way when it comes to creating conflicts with others with extreme rhetoric.

Most of the Americans on this topic, including myself, said they had no problems with the mosque as long as it was legal. One guy had a question about building the mosque actually on the site but said if that's not the case then he didn't have a problem with it. Another guy said he was fine with it but was worried others might complain. I believe Mist said he saw it as an opportunity for Muslims to speak out against the use of Islam in 9/11, but then naturally added his own slap to the face of America while calling others hostile.

If you browse through the thread here you'll find that an overwhelming number of attacks have been against Americans, and as the ultimate irony it comes from people who are making claims of others being hostile and closed-minded.

Give your hostility a rest and actually read some of the comments and respond appropriately. We're not all in a war with you or out to get you. Like a said most comments from Americans seem to be supportive of the mosque. Others, such as yourself and Mist, are the ones doing all of the attacking. You seem to come onto a thread, set up shop with an American strawman that you direct all of your comments towards, and then ignore actual Americans who are speaking to you.

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But time and time again we've seen the harshest words in any conversation come from your mouth about Americans. After listening to the way you talk it's hard to disagree that Americans love conflict because you're an American and you often lead the way when it comes to creating conflicts with others with extreme rhetoric.

In this thread, the way was led with two posts with harsh anti-Islamic, anti-Arab rhetoric, followed by a post from guess who paying it no mind whatsoever, but excusing the obvious bigotry.

Most of the Americans on this topic, including myself, said they had no problems with the mosque as long as it was legal.

As long as it was legal. That's a laugh. The article is about the attempt to manipulate the laws to make it illegal. But anyone who would excuse the anti-Islam slander and bigotry of the first two posts would certainly look the other way while the legal system made constructing a place to worship in a building that fellow Americans purchased for that purpose "illegal."

Would a Christian place of worship raise such opposition? No way. The whole thrust of the efforts is as anti-American as it is anti-Islam.

If you browse through the thread here you'll find that an overwhelming number of attacks have been against Americans, and as the ultimate irony it comes from people who are making claims of others being hostile and closed-minded.

There is not a single attack made against all Americans anywhere in this thread. Someone had to raise a voice against the anti-Islamic slander by merely pointing out the obvious about the Americans who wrote it and the Americans who tolerated it. Those Americans deserve what was said about them.

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"Someone had to raise a voice against the anti-Islamic slander."

I'm curious. Can you give an example of how a Muslim was slandered?

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Can you give an example of how a Muslim was slandered?

I said "anti-Islamic" slander.

In post 1, an Islamic prayer center is called "an abomination." In post 2, the devout Muslims who want to build the prayer center are dismissed as evil terrorists.

Some Americans refuse to heed the message given to them from the former Bush administration at the time of the attacks: that Islam is not to blame and that the terrorists don't in any way represent Islam.

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SuperLib said: But time and time again we've seen the harshest words in any conversation come from your mouth about Americans.

Yeah Super, sure. Like the time he referred to America as some donkey riding country, or called American churches "abominations", or average Americans churchgoers as "evil terrorists".

but then naturally added his own slap to the face of America while calling others hostile.

My slap in the face was to half of the Americans against this, not to all Americans and not to America either.

Give your hostility a rest and actually read some of the comments and respond appropriately.

You took the words right out of my mouth!

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In post 1, an Islamic prayer center is called "an abomination." Actually, the idea of an Islamic prayer center is called an abomination. Either way, that is not slander. It is an opinion.

I couldn't find "evil terrorists" in the second post by "Elbudamexicano" nor the ones after that.

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Yabits: In post 1, an Islamic prayer center is called "an abomination." In post 2, the devout Muslims who want to build the prayer center are dismissed as evil terrorists. Some Americans refuse to heed the message....

Spot on. Except that post 1 was written by a Brit and post 2 was written by a Mexican. Other than that your evidence is solid.

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Actually, the idea of an Islamic prayer center is called an abomination

Yes, before it is actually built it is still an idea.

Rational folks would have to admit that if the idea is an abomination, the actual carrying out of the plan would be no less, in the writer's view. I do not believe that there is much of a stretch between calling a prayer center an abomination and the religion it represents the same.

Yes, it is an opinion. Just as someone might state an opinion that one race is inferior to another. Most slander and bigotry comes in the form of an opinion.

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No, slander is the deliberate telling of a lie. If, FOR EXAMPLE, I write that Yabits is really a Muslim terrorist who is building bombs....THAT is slander/libel. You're more accurate in regards to bigotry's connection to opinions.

"I do not believe that there is much of a stretch between calling a prayer center an abomination and the religion it represents the same." I disagree. But either way, all religious need to stop acting as if they are above criticism.

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Spot on. Except that post 1 was written by a Brit and post 2 was written by a Mexican.

So they claim. Nevertheless, their invective was in support of the un-American activity to deny a New York religious group their right to worship in a place of their choosing, via finagling the legal system. The anti-Islamic tone of the posts is(was) obvious, and one could not help but notice the lack of comment on that aspect.

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No, slander is the deliberate telling of a lie. If, FOR EXAMPLE, I write that Yabits is really a Muslim terrorist who is building bombs....

Well, the post that was removed actually made that claim regarding the people whom the mosque would be built for.

But either way, all religious need to stop acting as if they are above criticism

Many Americans could start by showing them that every example about themselves.

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"Well, the post that was removed actually made that claim regarding the people whom the mosque would be built for."

Thanks, that clears that up.

"Many Americans could start by showing them that every example about themselves." Many Americans do and many don't. Still doesn't excuse religious groups including Muslims for having a hissy fit every time someone disagress with them, though. Does it?

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Yabits: So they claim.

Just say that you went full speed into a rant without looking first and be done with it.

The anti-Islamic tone of the posts is(was) obvious, and one could not help but notice the lack of comment on that aspect.

Still doesn't cover for your mistake. Besides, the next few comments after theirs included comments by Americans who said they support the mosque. Maybe some of us thought that was a better way to handle the issue than going full-on Jihad against Uncle Sam because of what a Brit and a Mexican said.

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SuperLib said: Just say that you went full speed into a rant without looking first and be done with it.

Maybe first you could admit that you were wrong and twice. First you try to slam Yabits and I by saying our posts are unfair to Americans here who seem supportive, even though its totally obvious Yabits and I were not talking about Americans HERE. You were just wrong and stirred the pot unnecessarily. Then you said:

Others, such as yourself and Mist, are the ones doing all of the attacking.

While leaving out the Brit and the Mexican you name later who started out attacking.

And you don't even bother to apologize for accusing me of attacking when I said half of Americans against this just relish the conflict and it was not even meant for posters here. It was meant for people gunning for landmark status, something which is too silly to be taken at face value.

Face it. You came here spoiling for a fight and misconstrued everything to get it.

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Still doesn't cover for your mistake.

Your mistakes are what started the whole snowball. It high time for you to come out of attack mode and shift to apologetic mode.

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samwatters said: No, slander is the deliberate telling of a lie.

Nitpick much? He meant "insult". This is not a court of law. In common parlace slander means to insult. Welcome to a layman's forum.

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Still doesn't excuse religious groups including Muslims for having a hissy fit every time someone disagress with them, though. Does it?

It depends upon how the "disagreement" is expressed.

I felt that it was the posts that were implying that a mosque could be an abomination and that worshipers were terrorists -- THOSE posts -- that were anti-American. While it is possible, but not at all provable, that the posters were not Americans, their sentiments attacking American values of freedom of worship and the use of a private building for religious purposes DID reflect the sentiments of the people who packed the hearing.

Would a Christian worship center be so opposed? No way.

My recommendation would be to donate a building near the former WTC for a mosque -- only make sure it is purposely situated so that the worshipers turning towards Mecca would also have to face ground zero.

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"Nitpick much? He meant "insult". This is not a court of law. In common parlace slander means to insult. Welcome to a layman's forum." Maybe. Or maybe I just say what I mean. "Slander" does not mean "insult." This forum is a layman's forum but that doesn't mean it is devoid of intelligence and/or integrity. "Slander" is a serious term; use it wisely or you could get yourself into trouble in a real court of law. My, do you have thin skin!

"Would a Christian worship center be so opposed? No way." Maybe that's is because the predominant religion in America is Christianity or versions of it. Would Muslims allow a Christian worship center built in the middle of Iraq? I think not.

And I should disclose that I am an atheist.

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"It depends upon how the "disagreement" is expressed. I felt that it was the posts that were implying that a mosque could be an abomination and that worshipers were terrorists."

But what if worshipers are terrorists? Isn't that a possibility? Let's assume that some decent peaceful American/Muslims (a contradiction because Islam clearly lists destruction of the west as one of its goals) want to build a mosque for worship. Fine. Are they going to screen the radicals from the moderates? Probably not. All religions protect their own. Look at the Catholic church sex scandal, look at the charity scandals of the Southern Baptists in the 1980's and look at Islam. It is a common tactic for radicals to use legitimate establishments are camps for terror plots. If you are really so inclined to promote freedom of religion, a good first step my be to acknoweldge that people are suspicious of religions that fly airplanes into skyscrapers.

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Would Muslims allow a Christian worship center built in the middle of Iraq? I think not.

You are generally correct. (There are Christians, and churches, in Iraq.) But there's no secular force in those countries, outside of Turkey, which holds to a value of freedom to worship for ALL religions. They would all be better off if they adopted that value.

I don't see how it is good for my country, United States, to gravitate towards middle-Eastern standards of tolerance for minority religions. In fact, I believe it is absolutely toxic for us to do so!

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"I don't see how it is good for my country, United States, to gravitate towards middle-Eastern standards of tolerance for minority religions. In fact, I believe it is absolutely toxic for us to do so!"

Fair enough. Even an atheist like me understands that religious people are basically happier than non-religious people like myself. I am also generally respectful of religions but have no tolerance for those who disregard the probable dangers of Islam. If Islam wishes to join mainstream life, it must answer many of the legitimate criticisms levied against it. And when those criticisms are immediately dismissed as racist or xenophobic, Islam is acting in a counter-productive manner.

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But what if worshipers are terrorists? Isn't that a possibility?

It's the same thing as calling them "sinners." By any definition and standard, many countries including my own have committed acts that can be considered "acts of terror."

because Islam clearly lists destruction of the west as one of its goals)

If that were true, then I don't see why any mosque should be tolerated anywhere in the US. But it's simply not true. If you go back and look at American propaganda during WWII -- and it's emotionally "safe" now to do that -- you'll find all kinds of grossly false claims being made about our nation's then-enemies. (For example, one "educational" tract claimed that there was no word for "love" in the Japanese language.)

You do bring up a very valid issue of when religions actively pursue a message of violence to others. I believe, however, that non-Muslims would be pleasantly surprised to find that the vast majority of people practicing Islam do so with a genuine motive for peace and brotherhood among all people.

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It's the same thing as calling them "sinners."

When I wrote this, I excluded the important part: What matters is whether or not the religious community approves of their "sin." A church or mosque can't control what kinds of folks are going to enter and pray. Many will no doubt be angry and violent.

But the mosque is there to provide an alternate "answer" to the urge to sin, and to help define what sin is. I can't think of a more important opportunity to influence a would-be criminal.

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"It's the same thing as calling them "sinners." By any definition and standard, many countries including my own have committed acts that can be considered 'acts of terror.'"

No, you're painting in strokes that are too broad; "sinners" from a Catholic church, for example, don't go out and set off bombs at sporting events.

"If that were true, then I don't see why any mosque should be tolerated anywhere in the US."

Now you're starting to understand why me and other "racist xenophobics" are against any more mosques in this country. And please read this point carefully; the destruction of all things not of Islam is clearly stated in the Koran. People like you try to make this into an issue of "moderates" versus "radicals." While the two groups exist and the former is much larger than the latter, you cannot escape that Islam wishes to eradicate all things not of Allah. I have asked two people of Middle Eastern descent have read the Koran and they both confirmed it.

"I believe, however, that non-Muslims would be pleasantly surprised to find that the vast majority of people practicing Islam do so with a genuine motive for peace and brotherhood among all people." So do the radicals; they just try to achieve peace by killing the ones they don't like.

"But the mosque is there to provide an alternate "answer" to the urge to sin, and to help define what sin is. I can't think of a more important opportunity to influence a would-be criminal." Maybe. Again, as an atheist I believe if you need a god to prevent you from hurting others or doing wrong, you have issues beyond where you worship. But remember, freedom of religion has a flip side---freedom FROM religion. And I don't think having a mosque so close to the site of a mass murder committed by Muslims is justified on the ground of worship. If Allah exists, he will be present miles away from downtown New York.

Thanks, sincerely, for your thoughts. We are on different sides of this debate but I appreciate your willingness to debate.

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We are on different sides of this debate but I appreciate your willingness to debate

And I want to discuss in such a way as brings credit what we can do when we so this effectively -- and I thank you for helping me in that regard.

To hone in on this topic, let me first say that we (Americans, especially) have more to fear from irrational fear than from genuine Islam. Irrational fear is at the root of the conflict.

The eventual "destruction" of all things not Islam is no different from the vision of "a new heaven and a new earth" (i.e. the destruction of all things un-Christian) set out in the New Testament.

And so let me put this question to you, because behind it fuels a lot of the misunderstanding that creates the controversy in this mosque issue whereby American values threaten to fail the test: If the Koran truly called all Muslims to go out and destroy things non-Islamic, wouldn't we expect to see far more violence and hostility from devout Muslims?

A truly violent, non-religious people would have grasped (and put their faith in) the power of technology and science and spent vast amounts to learn and experiment and create ever more powerful and lethal weaponry. A truly religious people would have taken this alternate tack: "No matter how powerful man's weapons may become, there is a greater power that will triumph over them in the end. We will put our faith in that power. We consider the former way to be godless."

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samwatters said: No, you're painting in strokes that are too broad; "sinners" from a Catholic church, for example, don't go out and set off bombs at sporting events.

Actually its you who paints too broad. I am sure some IRA guy has done just such a thing but you would't blame the Catholics (judging by the quote). But if some loons from al-Shabab do it, you immediately point out that they were Muslim and make statements that indicate Islam is to blame, if not in fact, then via your grammar. I am inclined to think you do it intentionally though.

Mind you, even I think there is a problem with the view of such acts among a great many Muslims. But people like you make far too much of the Islam connection. Its people who PERVERTED Islam that use Islam to justify terror. Then people like you mistake that perverted Islam for the mainstream Islam this mosque would represent.

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"The eventual "destruction" of all things not Islam is no different from the vision of "a new heaven and a new earth" (i.e. the destruction of all things un-Christian) set out in the New Testament." Maybe. But I don't think Christians are blowing people up in preparation for the new earth. And if they are, they are equally wrong. And if they are, it doesn't excuse Muslim violence. Like I said before, I think neither side is really attached to reality.

"Actually its you who paints too broad. I am sure some IRA guy has done just such a thing but you would't blame the Catholics (judging by the quote). But if some loons from al-Shabab do it, you immediately point out that they were Muslim and make statements that indicate Islam is to blame, if not in fact, then via your grammar. I am inclined to think you do it intentionally though" Some IRA guy is motivated by the desire to gain autonomy from England, not because he is hearing the word of god. Please also let me be clear; I do think Islam to blame for most of the violence committed by Muslims because Islam calls for the destruction of all things not of Allah and its followers have a tendency to act on those calls. This is not my "feeling" or "belief" or "hope;" I went visited two residents of Middle Eastern descent who have mosques and asked this question. They replied that, yes, Islam calls its followers to do so but followers must chose for themselves. But again; you cannot (intelligently) escape the Islam connection---it calls for violence. The violence you claim as perverted is actually, according to the Koran, the most holy form of obedience!

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"If the Koran truly called all Muslims to go out and destroy things non-Islamic, wouldn't we expect to see far more violence and hostility from devout Muslims?" Absolutely, 100% yes. So we don't we? My opinion--not fact, just opinion---is that because most people know that religion is a sham. The truly devout are usually the poor and downtrodden and most likely to be persuaded to give up their life in earth for life in heaven. The Bin Ladens, Cardinal O'Connors and Jimmy Swaggerts have a little more (material) motivation to cover their butts. Very intelligent question, by the way!

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yabits: First I have read and studied both the Qur'an and the new testament and the "destruction" you speak of in the new testament (please read it yourself) states by using the word or god and with love, as opposed to the Qur'an where it clearly states that killing to remove non-believers is acceptable.

MistWizard: Your comparisons between al-Shabab and the IRA are misleading because no church leader has ever come out in support of IRA actions or violence on the contrary they (all sides) have continuously condemned their action as opposed to al-Shabab were we have Imans praising their actions and the rest staying silent or making excuses for their actions.

I wrote this before (and I really don't care one way or another if they build this centre there as long as it is legally done and run) those who proposed this idea must have known there would be controversy given the nature and (flawed) motive of the attack on 9/11 so why the semblance of shock?

Were they that naive or were they looking for controversy from the start.

I gave the Columbine example previously but maybe this would be a more appropriate comparison.

How would people react if a Shinto group opened a shrine and cultural centre right across from the Pearl Harbor memorial?

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I am sure they knew ppl would react to this, and not in a good way, so that does make me wonder a bit on what really their motives are, but as stated before, my feelings "against" this is of course emotional...Do I like the idea, no...do I believe the intentions are pure, not sure...The new testament does in fact encourage God, and love...

The Quran...http://www.skepticsannotatedbible.com/quran/int/long.html

scroll down to number..30, 31 and so on

I do believe in freedom of religion, so I have to say it is sad they believe this, it is taught to them since they are born, it's all they know and believe...sad..

In my opinion, it is fine for them to build a mosque but it would be better if it were not so close to ground zero...but if it does happen then it will need to be respected...I agree with comments, on if it were a Christian temple of sorts would ppl be against it, no of course not...America has to live up to it's freedom of religion..so if it is legal then so be it..

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limboinjapan said: Your comparisons between al-Shabab and the IRA are misleading because no church leader has ever come out in support of IRA actions or violence on the contrary they (all sides) have continuously condemned their action as opposed to al-Shabab were we have Imans praising their actions and the rest staying silent or making excuses for their actions.

Can you said media bias? You sound like a born sucker. Just because Japan Today does not spoon feed you Imams speaking out against violence does not mean they don't exist. http://www.islamicsupremecouncil.com/theimam.htm

Moderator: All readers, stay on topic please. References to the IRA are not relevant to this discussion.

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MistWizard; You must have had to dig deep for these and you distorted even what you found.

First: Father James Chesney denied involvement second the only evidence against him was a supposed unidentified man who never gave his name was never asked his name and said he heard something and ZERO other evidence!

Moderator: All readers, please stay on topic.

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MistWizard: "Can you said media bias? You sound like a born sucker. Just because Japan Today does not spoon feed you Imams speaking out against violence does not mean they don't exist."

This is you BIG Iman! The Iman of a Mosquee in Calgary! And a Sufi no less.

I read write and Speak 5 languages and I am still waiting to read some thing from one of the Major leaders of Islam preferable Sunni seeing that most of those doing these attacks claim to be Sunni.

There are major Imans, how about we hear condemnation from the Imans of these places: Masjid-an-Nabawi, Medina, Masjid Al-Aqsa, Jerusalem, Masjid Quba, These are some of the holiest places in Sunni Islam and I for one have looked had to find any one of the Imans form them condemn these attacks.

As for this site as I have stated I don't care build it or not as long as it is legal, I will add that I don't believe in blocking it just because it is Islamic but as I stated before I do feel that maybe the organizers should have given it a little more thought or perhaps they did and the results are what they expected.

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"America has to live up to it's freedom of religion..so if it is legal then so be it.."

VelvetteRosetta, I agree with you 99% of the time on this but be careful; some pretty awful things in US history have been legal! The concept of building a mosque so close to a site of a religiously based attack just feels wrong to me regardless of legality.

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limboinjapan said: There are major Imans, how about we hear condemnation from the Imans of these places:

Excuse me? You want condemnation from SPECIFIC Sunni Imams? I tell you what, how about first you find me a quote condemning the Gaza blockade from Benjamin Netanyahu?

How about from the Imam who wants to build the community center?

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinions/2010/05/26/2010-05-26_the_truth_about_the_mosque_the_leader_of_proposed_muslim_center_near_ground_zero.html

My heart goes out to all of the victims of 9/11. They are all heroes.

And another Imam http://littlegreenfootballs.com/weblog/?entry=23515_Non-Flying_Imam-_9-11_Hijackers_Were_Not_Muslims&only

“If they claim they are Muslim, they are wrong,” Mr. Shahin said yesterday in a telephone interview. “Despite what religion they claim, even if they are all Arabs, to say they are Muslims is wrong, completely wrong.

Moderator: Back on topic please. The subject is the mosque.

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samwatters...And Ican def. see why you feel this way, it doesn't set right with me one bit.

Yes true to many things have happened in U.S history that should never have happened, said to been legal and seems it should "not" have been legal at all...

Many may disagree but I believe if it is meant to be/happen, it will no matter how much ppl, rant and rave, yes it good to stand up for what you believe in. But I for one don't plan on getting high blood pressure or a heart attack for stressing out to much " my thoughts"...to he ppl of America also have the right to state opinions..freedom of speech, but as long as these Muslims ARE CITIZENS OF U.S they have just as much right as we do..

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The subject is the community center! No mosque is planned! What about the community center? The fact that people object it! Why do people object to it? Well one at least objects because he draws a connection between the 9/11 attacks and Islam. I doubt he is alone. But asking me to cite a foreign Imam condemning the 9/11 attacks is like me asking him for quotes from a specific priest in an allied country condeming the firebombing of Dresden.

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Mosque to go up near New York's ground zero CNN ^ | May 7, 2010 | Nicole Bliman

Posted on Friday, May 07, 2010 12:53:48 AM by 2ndDivisionVet

Plans to build a mosque two blocks away from ground zero have set off an emotional debate among area residents and relatives of victims of the September 11, 2001 terror attacks.

Cordoba House project calls for a 15-story community center including a mosque, performance art center, gym, swimming pool and other public spaces.

The project is a collaboration between the American Society for Muslim Advancement and the Cordoba Initiative, both of which work to improve relations with followers of the religion.

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"but as long as these Muslims ARE CITIZENS OF U.S they have just as much right as we do.."

I agree 100% but we have to be aware of and plan for the likelihood that Musllims who are not citizens and do not have peaceful intentions are going to attempt to infilitrate this mosque.

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You know I was thinking that when I wrote the post and was going to say so and decided against it...that Musllims "who are not citizens" so true, even the ones who are cititzens..So it can be hard to actually say how onw feels when you want freedom of rights and religion to be honored when in reality you know that something doesn't feel right..

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@VelvetRosetta, I agree with you 100%. On the one hand America and other countries and institutions are founded on freedoms and rights and mutual respect---this board and its diversity of opinions is one example!---but on the other hand if the relationship is not mutual and taken advantage of by another party, it can lead to disaster. I suggest that the planned mosque become part of a larger "convention center of peace" that would contain the aforementioned mosque as well as a synagogue, and other representative religious centers with the shared purpose being increased religiou understanding that leads to increased peace between the religions. Who knows? Maybe even a few of us atheists might become more understanding!

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Recently mosques are targets of terrorist attacks. By Muslims, if you can believe that. I do believe it.

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Recently mosques are targets of terrorist attacks.By Muslims, if you can believe that. I do believe it.

If you know history well, you will know it is not only recently. Shiits started attacks on mosques from 11th century since the Order of the Assassins was formed. Shiits and sunnis have never been in god relationships.

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I agree samwatters...my religious beliefs are of Pentecostal faith but to say I am Christian would be hypocritical on my part seeing how I am not a church member...but my beliefs remain the same, even though my religion on very strict...I have always respected the religion of others,I say we each have the right to have our beliefs and be respected for them.

I have to say what you are saying is a good idea, but I ask...what if even this were to pan out in such a way...would it end any possible reasons they could "maybe" have for building this at this site?

Thing is it, is already "legal" and in the works...

Ro Sheffe, a board member who attended the meeting, said the project did not need to get the board's approval.

"They own the land, and their plans don't have any zoning changes," Sheffe said. "They came to us for our opinions and to let us know their plans. It was purely voluntary on their part."

source...http://209.157.64.200/focus/news/2508592/posts

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@VelvetRosetta, I agree. It is probably legal and will probably go through but I believe it is being handled poorly. Giving building permits for land so close to the greatest terrorist attack on American soil to members of a group that was connected (at least by religious affiliation)to the villians who bombed the WTC is going to stir anti-Muslim/Islam sentiment. And I sincerely hope that the project becomes a good and stable influence and that no radicals find their way to this purposed mosque because if there is a terrorist attack that originates from it the backlash against Muslims will probably be unlike anything ever seen before.

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samwatters...Horrible to think of what could come out of this, but who knows right, we can speculate all we want, so if nothing comes of it then Amen! You know I am so mixed up on this situation, that I am not even sure what to think of it anymore...guess all we can do is cross our fingers and "hope that the project becomes a good and stable influence"

=)

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"guess all we can do is cross our fingers and "hope that the project becomes a good and stable influence" Same here!

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Ah yes another moment in American history where oppression is not opposed.

Freedom of Religion, I wonder if that matters anymore?

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"Ah yes another moment in American history where oppression is not opposed" Exactly who is oppressing whom?

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None of the people against the Community Center have done anything in their own right to make me against it. Truly, how sad. But after looking at the statements concerning 9/11 of Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, the Imam behind the proposed community center, you cannot help but feeling they are lukewarm at best. He does not directly condemn the hijackers, and that gives me pause.

Earlier I suggested a plaque on the place clearly condemning the hijackers. That does not seem it would be remotely possible with Rauf in charge. This will not make me support the sneaky attempt to give the place landmark status, but it surely makes me see the necessity in keeping an eye on Rauf and the center. He may simply feel he is between a rock and a hard place. The very people here who equate 9/11 with Islam will take condemnation of the hijackers as condemnation of Islam itself. That leaves the man something of a position. He may feel that that justifies lukewarm statements, but frankly, I do not.

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NYC is a big enough to build this mosque elsewhere. 2 blocks from Ground Zero is salt in a slow healing wound. You want religious freedom? Take it across town. People are still grieving the losses in life and property that came at the hands of Islamic radicals. To go along with replacing the Twin Towers with a Minaret is beyond the pale. Mayor Bloomberg needs a boot to the keyster.

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pamelot, your post is like demanding a Christian church be built further away from the abortion clinics were abortion doctors were killed by Christian radicals. Obviously you connect 9/11 with Islam and obviously, you are wrong.

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"Obviously you connect 9/11 with Islam and obviously, you are wrong" So who should we connect 9/11 with or to?

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samwatters said: So who should we connect 9/11 with or to?

Terrorists and radicals would be nice. The name al-Quaida often comes up, and they represent very few people but themselves, same with Army of God and the American Coalition of Life Activists.

Just stop making everything an us vs. them issue where "them" is an ever expanding catergory of people with a mere semantical relationship. In other words, if that guy says he did it for Allah, it does not mean the other guy worshipping Allah approves or is going to do the same. Fanatical views of Allah are the extreme, not the norm. If al-Quaida were so damned popular they would have one heck of a lot more members. Islam has 1.5 billion members. How many does al-Quaida have?

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@Mistwizard: Islamic radicals.

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sorry finger slipped before I finished the post,

(continue)...Ok but if these ppl believe in the Quran and live by it, then how can one actually turn a blind eye to what it says...not all muslims are the same but the Quran is the same...though some have been said to interpret it in different ways..

this is an article I read awhile back, from 2002

http://www.meforum.org/168/at-war-with-whom

Still, all of the 19 hijackers on September 11 were Muslims. Every one of the FBI's 22 most wanted terrorists are Muslims. Nearly all the groups and individuals listed in President Bush's executive order blocking terrorist funds were Muslims, too. So how is this not a war on Islam?

Correction: Militant Islam

The "War on Terror" should really be called the "War on Militant Islam." The terrorists of September 11, Osama bin Laden, al-Qaeda, and the Taliban all adhere to an ideology we have come to know as militant Islam, a minority outgrowth of the faith that exudes a bitter hatred for Western ideas, including capitalism, individualism, and consumerism. It rejects the West and much that it has to offer (with the exception of weapons, medicines, and other useful technologies) seeking instead to implement a strict interpretation of the Koran (Islam's holy book) and shari'a (Islamic law). America, as radical Muslims see it, is the primary impediment to building an Islamic world order.

Accordingly, militant Islam directs its venom towards America and the West. The Taliban's supreme leader, Mullah Muhammad Omar, said after September 11 that "the plan [to destroy America] is going ahead and God willing it is being implemented, but it is a huge task beyond the will and comprehension of human beings. If God's help is with us, this will happen within a short period of time."

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@MistWizard, Radicals, moderates, it doesn't matter. Islam calls for the destruction of the West. If that means it's "us versus them," then fine.

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pamelot said: Islamic radicals.

They are no more Islamic than the Army of God is Christian. You get it yet? (rolls eyes)

samwatters: Islam...calls..all..the..faithful...to..destroy...all..things...not..of..Allah.

Islam is an idea. Ideas do not have a voice to call with. The slow one here is you. Imams have a mouth, they could make the call. But most are not making the call. The Koran could be said to have a voice in this sense, but it does not make the call either unless you take passages out of context. The Old Testament makes the call very clearly though.

It could be said that the modern culture of Islamic countries is suspect and getting more violent and reactionary. But they are reacting to the west which has been heavily meddling in M.E. affairs for almost a century (and that is not counting the British Empire).

Plus you keep thinking you are a primary target. Most terrorism conducted by people claiming to be Muslim is conducted on other such people or actual Muslims. Relax dude. I am sure you will survive a community center with a Islamic prayer room near ground zero. Buck up and have some courage.

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VelvetRosetta said: seeking instead to implement a strict interpretation of the Koran (Islam's holy book) and shari'a (Islamic law).

Actually its the opposite. Their interpretation of the Koran is not strict at all. Its out of context cherry picking. Your average fundamentalist is fundamentally dumb and cannot hang on to acutal context when reading a story so they invent their own more simple context and thus get it all wrong. Sharia cannot be strictly interpreted because there is no one clear body of Sharia law.

I do appreciate that you float the term "Militant Islam" though. Its a whole lot better than what other people who would even utter the words "War on Islam" would do. I prefer to think of it as "Muslim wanna-be terrorism", because, just like the Americans who went to join the Taliban, those people are too damned stupid to understand Islam well enough to be called Muslims. Those militant dipsticks are NOT Muslims.

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Mistwizard:

" Your average fundamentalist is fundamentally dumb and cannot hang on to acutal context when reading a story so they invent their own more simple context and thus get it all wrong. Sharia cannot be strictly interpreted because there is no one clear body of Sharia law. "

That is great that you think so. However, the leading clerics of both Shia and Sunni islam disagree with you.

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However, the leading clerics of both Shia and Sunni islam disagree with you.

Does not matter. It seems the Imam behind this is Sufi.

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One fact I'd like to bring up then Mistwizard. Why does the organization Council of Ex-muslims exist? Why does another organization Former Ex-muslims United exist? Islam is the only religion that has ORGANIZATIONS of people who used to be muslim congregate together to speak out against Islam. I don't see any organizations such as a council of ex-christians/bhuddists/wiccans/scientologists even that focus on attacking their former religions in such large groups.

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Mistwizard, I said?...did you read the article..it said...I was just posting over something I read..

now you said...

samwatters: Islam...calls..all..the..faithful...to..destroy...all..things...not..of..Allah.

Islam is an idea. Ideas do not have a voice to call with

Islam is the predominant religion So it does have a voice, by those who believe it...

All I will say now, is I have stated already I do have mixed feelings on this, not sure what to believe nor who to believe, only time will tell.

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