Minnesota Mosque Approved With Only Minor Protest
The suburb of Plymouth, Minnesota, has approved plans to build a new mosque within the city. And unlike the recent fights in New York and Tennessee, Plymouth managed to pass the plan through city council unanimously, with very little protest.
Steve Juetten, the city’s community development director, called the eventual council vote “non-controversial,” saying they focused solely on land use and zoning rules, not religious issues.
But for those few who did protest the building prior to the vote, building a new mosque was an issues of “treason.“ According to Minnesota Public radio:
[O]f the 16 or so people who spoke before the commission, two raised objections to the mosque on religious grounds, and the atmosphere sometimes grew heated.
“The center of Plymouth is not the appropriate place for this,” said resident Connie Sambor, who invoked the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and said the community was forgetting the attacks too soon. She was interrupted by commission chair Jim Davis.
“Ma’am, I’m going to have to cut you off. We’re here to talk about the building and the land use issues, not to talk about political opinions,” he said.
Jeff Baumann, of Coon Rapids, went a step further.
“Aiding the enemy is treason,” he said.
“These are not my enemies, sir,” Davis replied. “Will you please sit down?”
“They are the enemy — they are saying they are the enemy,” Baumann insisted before finally yielding the floor.
Although some commissioners did report receiving anti-Islamic emails prior to the vote, there was otherwise very little opposition, unlike the cases in New York and Tennessee, which have at times gone as far as to erupt into violence.
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