I really don’t, in any specific way—I have a general distrust of the waste of effort building temples anywhere, but I see nothing unusual or untoward about Muslims (who do live in New York, and may be citizens of this country) building a goofy ol’ religious building in downtown Manhattan…except, of course, with property values being so high there it seems like a poor investment. When I first heard right-wingers yammering about prohibiting the construction of Islamic buildings anywhere near the crater of the 9/11 terrorist act, my first thought was that would only be acceptable if they prohibited any religious structures anywhere near the place.
Jerry Coyne summarizes some of the views by Gnu Atheists — it turns out we don’t all speak with one voice on the matter, which isn’t surprising at all. However, I will turn to my other guru, Jeffrey Rowland, who has a cartoon summarizing the issue.
There’s been a lot of pointless bickering lately about a Mosque being built near where Nine Eleven happened. Exactly what is a “safe distance” to put a Mosque away from a place so that it doesn’t have some imaginary effect on it? I’d prefer a ban on ALL religious buildings being built within 1,000 miles of a place where ANY MEMBER of ANY SPECIFIC religious organization did some harm unto society.
This is the advantage of being a non-religious person. We just look at situations like this and scratch our heads, then we move on and try to figure out how to make life less terrible in ways that can actually help.
I like his ban. It would instantly free up a lot of real estate for productive use.
I also like his term for churches, synagogues, temples, and mosques: “Worshippin’ huts”. I may have to use that more often.