Pray Where You Want: Obama Supports Religious Freedom in NYC

Pray Where You Want: Obama Supports Religious Freedom in NYC


Newsflash everyone: President Obama upholds the Constitution!

This was my response (in my head) when Obama defended the right of a Muslim group to build a mosque and community center in New York City. Speaking to religious leaders at an event celebrating the Muslim holiday of Ramadan, Obama expressed the Constitutional right to freedom of religion, displaying what we hired him to do — the ability to uphold the U.S. Constitution. But just hours later, he has had to “clarify his remarks” (which is newspeak for “eating your words”) by stating that he did not come out in support of the particular project but in the principle of religious freedom.

I actually don’t blame Obama for “clarifying.” With Birthers and Teapartiers (aren’t they in the same group?) still questioning the validity of his birth certificate and his patriotism, Obama has to be clear about what he means, and can not zero in on every local issue as President of a country (we saw what happen with “beergate”). Further, with Republicans seeking to block much of his remaining domestic agenda, the last thing he needs is a passion-filled debate over whether a building should be erected in lower Manhattan. That’s Mayor Bloomberg’s job.

However, this debate over the mosque being built in lower Manhattan, close to the site of the World Trade Center attack, shows the seething anti-Islam sentiment in this country. Many in this country still believe we are at war with Islam and that Muslims are the enemy of U.S. democracy. Another newsflash: We, the United States, are not at war with Islam, nor is there a monolithic, U.S./Christian hating “Islamic world.” Never was and never will be.

Although the terrorists on 9/11 were self-proclaimed Muslims, they were not acting on behalf of the billions of Muslims worldwide. Timothy McVeigh, the mastermind behind the Oklahoma City bombing – the most devastating domestic terrorism incident in the United States prior to 9/11 – was a military veteran and self-proclaimed Christian. He claimed to be avenging the Branch Davidians, the religious group led by David Koresh who was at the center of the Waco incident, yet his actions did not alter the view of the religion or of those individuals who support the tenets of Christianity worldwide, and rightly so.

Religious groups should have the right to erect buildings for worship, and Muslim citizens should not be the exception.


  1. Nice article, well done. Yea i also believe everyone has the right to practice their religion in america. Including muslims and it's about time we clarified that we arent fight muslims or islam.

  2. Obama was right to speak of religious freedom as enshrined in the constitution of the USA. It is a shame that he felt the need to 'clarify' for the benefit of those who would find any fault with his Americanness; and those would be the money power. He is unfortunate of being in a position of 'damned if he does, damned if he doesn't'. So, America is the land of the 'free', is it?

  3. Just a thought

    I think that since the 911 attacks were attacks against not just NY but the USA, it may be ok for the president of the USA to have a comment or two about the fall out of this real estate project. Especially since the debate is not just limited to NY. In addition, the whole issue of it being appropriate to build the Muslim center NEAR the WTC is interesting…… appropriate was it to build the WTC and many of the buildings in lower Manhattan ON sacred African burial grounds? Where was the outrage then?

    I'm just sayin'……………………

  4. That is the best weblog for anybody who desires to seek out out about this topic. You realize so much its nearly arduous to argue with you (not that I truly would want…HaHa). You positively put a new spin on a subject thats been written about for years. Great stuff, simply great!