Dutch MP and vehement Islam critic Geert Wilders will travel to New York to speak at a Sept. 11 protest against Park51, the so-called "Ground Zero mosque", sparking controversy in the Netherlands where he is currently taking part in negotiations to form a new government. Dutch diplomats are worried. [more inside]
"This nation was founded on the principle that the government must never choose between religions, or favor one over another."
"On September 11, 2001, thousands of first responders heroically rushed to the scene and saved tens of thousands of lives. More than 400 of those first responders did not make it out alive. In rushing into those burning buildings, not one of them asked 'What God do you pray to?' 'What beliefs do you hold?'"New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has recently defended the planned Cordoba Initiative Islamic Community Center and Mosque to be built near Ground Zero against critics. Yesterday, after the City’s Landmarks Preservation Commission voted to allow the demolition of a building that would be replaced by the center, Mr. Bloomberg gave a speech on Governor's Island (the location seems to have been deliberately chosen) in which he eloquently defended religious freedom. (YT: Video) (Previously on MeFi)
Remember this picture? Arguably the most famous flag raised since this one was, and apparently its now gone missing. And now the three firefighters who didn't know they were being photographed won't talk to the press about a flag appraised to be worth over $500K.
WTC Redevelopment Today at 1pm EST, the 7 proposed new plans for redevelopment of the former World Trade Center site will be revealed. Currently, they're carrying the announcements of the new proposals (with architect descriptions of their projects) live on wnyc.org on the Brian Lehrer Show.
Thinking Big - A Plan for Ground Zero and Beyond - from this past Sundays NY Times Magazine. Some months ago, when the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation made public their plans, Metafilterians were, for the most part, underwhelmed. This new plan, from an impressive set of architects, goes far beyond the LMDC plans and really redevelops much of the surrounding region as well. There's certainly no lack of bold or controversial designs. I for one, think this is the best set of suggestions that I've seen so far. Delightfully bold.
It's amazing how good religion is at mobilizing people to do awful, murderous things. There is this dark side to it, and anyone who loves religious experience, including me, better begin to own there
It's amazing how good religion is at mobilizing people to do awful, murderous things. There is this dark side to it, and anyone who loves religious experience, including me, better begin to own there - a profound admission - in very well produced piece about 9/11 -
Toxic Exposure Near Ground Zero EPA Administrator Christine Todd Whitman said a week after the attacks: "I am glad to reassure the people of New York...that their air is safe to breathe and their water is safe to drink." Yet now: "Dust taken from an air vent in the apartment building's hallway contained 555 times the suggested acceptable level for asbestos.....Many of those who live or work downtown report strikingly similar symptoms: nosebleeds, sore throats, bronchial infections and an endless racking cough." How long do we need to wait until we see some full blown investigative reporting?