Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Far from Ground Zero, other plans for mosques run into vehement opposition

Washington Post
August 23, 2010

For more than 30 years, the Muslim community in this Nashville suburb has worshipped quietly in a variety of makeshift spaces -- a one-bedroom apartment, an office behind a Lube Express -- attracting little notice even after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

But when the community's leaders proposed a 52,900-square-foot Islamic center with a school and a swimming pool this year, the vehement backlash from their neighbors caught them by surprise. Opponents crowded county meetings and held a noisy protest in the town square that drew hundreds, some carrying signs such as "Keep Tennessee Terror Free."