Thursday, August 19, 2010
Less than a week after President Obama said he supported the construction of a controversial Islamic mosque and cultural center two blocks from the site of the World Trade Center Towers in lower Manhattan, a new TIME poll suggests the president is on the wrong side of an issue that is guaranteed to become an election issue in November midterms and beyond.
Opponents of the planned Islamic community center and mosque near Ground Zero in lower Manhattan have public opinion firmly in their corner. According to a new TIME poll, 61% of respondents oppose the construction of the Park51/Cordoba House project, compared with 26% who support it. More than 70% concur with the premise that proceeding with the plan would be an insult to the victims of the attacks on the World Trade Center. Opposition to the project appears to derive largely from the conviction that the proposed site of the project — just two blocks from Ground Zero, in a building that formerly housed a Burlington Coat Factory outlet — is so close to “hallowed ground.”
Mr. Obama’s incoherent support of the planned Islamic mosque further reinforces the widespread belief that the president is a Muslim, and not a Christian.
Twenty-eight percent of voters do not believe Muslims should be eligible to sit on the U.S. Supreme Court. Nearly one-third of the country thinks adherents of Islam should be barred from running for President — a slightly higher percentage than the 24% who mistakenly believe the current occupant of the Oval Office is himself a Muslim. In all, just 47% of respondents believe Obama is a Christian; 24% declined to respond to the question or said they were unsure, and 5% believe he is neither Christian nor Muslim.
Park51, originally called the Cordoba House, is a planned $100 million, 13-story, glass and steel Islamic cultural center and mosque, just two blocks or 600 feet from where the World Trade Center stood, is sponsored by Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf. Rauf’s views regarding the 9/11 terrorist attacks on America have been called into question.
In an interview two weeks after 9/11, Rauf told the late Ed Bradley on 60 Minutes:
“I wouldn’t say that the United States deserved what happened. But the United States’ policies were an accessory to the crime that happened. In fact, in the most direct sense, Osama bin Laden is made in the USA.”
It remains an utter mystery to me why President Obama would offer his support for the construction of a monument to Jihad supported by an Imam who told 60 Minutes that on 9/11, America basically had it coming.
This is, in my view, no different from telling a rape victim she had it coming because she dared to wear a skirt and lipstick.