Sunday, August 22, 2010

Recommended Reading

By now I've had opportunity to read many, many op-eds by Muslims stating defiant opposition to the planned Park51 community center.  Many of them have seemed not a little disingenuous, driven more by political expediency than genuine concern. Maybe that's an erroneous reading on my part, but it's nonetheless the impression I've come away with. However, Hussein Rashid is the first I've seen address valid concerns about the center in terms of potential negatives for the New York (and American) Muslim community:
I do not think any of the organizers of Park51 are operating out of ill-will, but there is no indication that they actually know what they are doing on this project, either in terms of building it or running it once it is completed. I believe the core concern that many of us share is that a group that cannot lead a real estate development project cannot hope to launch a center that will create a long-term vision of what it means to be Muslim in America. For the amount of political, social, and financial capital being used on this project, its failure would set the community in New York, if not the country, back generations.
It's a good point, and one worth considering the longer this thing stretches and as people on either side get further dug in.  More at the link.

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