Another mosque controversy
Once again, we see muslims tossing the victim card and bitching because they did not get their way. What these crybabies refuse to recognize is the people rule America and the majority of the cities residents do not want an expanded mosque.
In reality, this was never about a mosque it is about control and domination. If the followers of the worlds best-known pedophile just wanted a bigger area to worship they could change the location by less than a mile and all this would end. They could build whatever they wanted. They will not do that, instead they will demand free legal help and get it and attempt to bankrupt a small city until it surrenders.
I am tried of these games, the people spoke and allah lost. When this gets to court, the bloggers will post a link so that you the people can donate funds to the city to help counter the lawsuit.
By Mark Davis, 23 Jan, 11, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
The two houses on U.S. 29 don’t warrant a second glance. They’re ranch homes, typical of the era when there weren’t as many people in Lilburn. They hardly look like structures in a federal lawsuit and Justice Department inquiry.
Those two houses, and another building facing Hood Road, are at the center of a land-use dispute between Muslim worshipers and the Gwinnett County city.
The suit, filed by the Dar-E-Abbas congregation, has made Lilburn a reluctant defendant in a case that some say highlights a nation’s fears in a post-9/11 world. Others say the suit threatens their quality of life.
The U.S. Justice Department, which can investigate civil-rights matters, recently asked city officials about the dispute.
-They also investigate radical muslims, guess why they really care? Muslims are idiots, they are bringing federal agents right to their door. I hope that you like all the attention.
Dar-E-Abbas, a Shiite Muslim congregation which has worshiped in Lilburn since 1998, wants to buy four acres adjacent to its buildings on U.S. 29. It proposes building a 20,000-square-foot mosque and 200-space parking lot on the site. But to make the deal work, the city must rezone the land for commercial use.
That hasn’t happened. Following recommendations from the Lilburn Planning Commission, the city council twice has denied the rezoning — its latest vote last month. The council said the plans would create traffic and drainage problems.
Wasi Zaidi, who helped found the congregation in 1998, isn’t convinced those are council members’ and residents’ only concerns.
“I’ve never heard of people trying to build a church and having problems like this,” said Zaidi, who’s watched the congregation grow to about 90 families since its founding in 1998.
-There is the ever present distraction, there can be no connection between a church and an islamic worship center and they know it. They might as well have used a used car lot in the comparison but they wanted the public to feel a religion was behind this and a power grab
City officials declined to discuss specific issues in the case. Residents against the expansion say they’re opposed to the congregation’s plans, not its practices.
“People have made this into a religious issue, which it never was,” said resident Ilene Garry, whose home is near the mosque’s proposed parking lot. “Nobody is against their religious rights.”
-The fact they let the muslims worship there for over 13 years already proves their point, this is about ridiculous muslim demands for expansion and not about location.
Lilburn grew on the rails. The town was a stop on the Seaboard Airline Railway, a destination for cotton farmers who ginned their product and watched it roll away to far-off markets.
When cotton farming faded, so did the city. In 1960, according to census figures, Lilburn’s population was 753. Then greater Atlanta began booming and Lilburn mushroomed. In 2009, the latest figures available, Lilburn’s population stood at 11,642. Nearly 4,000 of Lilburn’s residents were foreign-born.
A soaring building on the edge of U.S. 29 highlights the city’s transformation. In 2007, devout Hindus from across the nation came to the city to consecrate the newly completed Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS) temple.
Seventy-four feet tall and gleaming white, its spires topped with flags, the building looks like something from across the seas — not a house of worship sharing the skyline with steeples of Baptist and Methodist churches.
The city features the temple on the main page of its web site, offering a subtle message. The town where farmers once ginned cotton has changed.
“It’s a beautiful building,” said Lilburn Mayor Diana Preston, whose family has lived in Lilburn since 1975. “They [temple worshipers] are good neighbors.”
What has occurred in Lilburn mirrors changes across the metro area. The region is home to about 50 mosques, according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Georgia.
Atlanta lawyer Doug Dillard, who represents Dar-E-Abbas, doesn’t think Lilburn has extended the same courtesy to his clients as it has to other religious organizations.
“I’m a Christian, but I believe in everyone’s right to worship as they please,” said Dillard. “The city of Lilburn doesn’t want Muslims to worship in their city.”
Residents and officials dispute that, repeatedly saying their concerns have nothing to do with religion.
Still, Dillard filed suit against the city in December 2009 after the council’s first refusal to rezone. In their original request, worshipers wanted to buy and rezone three tracts comprising eight acres.
Dar-E-Abbas wanted the land to build a gymnasium, worship center and cemetery.
Council members, who said they didn’t like the idea of a cemetery in a residential area, turned that down.
The congregation downsized its plans, saying it would build only a mosque and parking lot on four acres. That request failed last month.
“It’s time for these local governments to understand the Constitution,” said Dillard, who’s also representing an Islamic center in its efforts to rezone a mosque site in Alpharetta. “We’re not going to let a local government infringe on a most basic right.”
Lilburn’s situation isn’t unique, said Daniel Mach, who oversees religious-freedom issues for the American Civil Liberties Union.
The agency has an online U.S. map highlighting what it considers cases of “anti-mosque activity” since 2005. They show up as more than 40 red dots stretching from California to New York. Two — Lilburn and Alpharetta — are in Georgia.
Muslims aren’t the only religion on the ACLU’s watch list, Mach added. In the past, he said, the agency has defended Catholics, Jews and Protestants, often in rezoning cases.
Still, “there is a notable trend of opposition to mosques, nationwide,” Mach said.
The issue isn’t about religion, said Amy Henderson, a spokeswoman for the Georgia Municipal Association. The organization is an advocacy agency for more than 500 towns and cities.
“These kind of [land] disputes take place around Georgia fairly often,” she said. “It doesn’t have anything to do with religious beliefs. It has to do with qualify-of-life issues — noise, traffic and parking.”
The homes near Dar-E-Abbas’ mosque are single-family dwellings, most with deep back yards dotted with toys and swing sets. One subdivision, St. Albans, nudges the land Dar-E-Abbas wants to rezone.
St. Albans resident Lorraine Lobos fears what will happen to her neighborhood if the congregation gets the land rezoned.
“We don’t care about their religion,” said Lobos, who’s lived in St. Albans with her children for nine years. “We do care about the trouble [expansion] would make.”
On Fridays and Saturdays, said Lobos, she hears the faithful as they gather. Building a bigger mosque, she said, will bring more worshipers, more noise.
Zaidi disputes claims that the members of Dar-E-Abbas cause a racket. “We’re only trying to build a community,” he said.
City officials aren’t saying much. Asked to discuss the Justice Department’s interest in the case, city manager Bill Johnsa declined. A spokesman for the Justice Department also declined to discuss it.
Preston, meantime, said she wants the case to end. She would not say how, or for which side.
“Lilburn is a wonderful little community,” she said. “Sometimes, we need a referee.”
-No, sometimes you need to let the residents decide how their resources will be used and how much control you give outsiders, This is your home and your choice. Your investment in your city can make or break you, decide wisely. If your muslim neighbors are making such ridiculous demands now, just wait and see what they want next if they win. The new mosque is just the beginning of this story.