August 8th, 2010
10:15 AM ET

Developer behind 'ground zero' Islamic center: 'This is not about the World Trade Center'

[cnn-video url= http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/bestoftv/2010/08/08/chernoff.sharif.intv.cnn%5D

Q: Why not have this center a little further away from the World Trade Center instead of just two blocks right there? There probably wouldn’t be much opposition…

A: This is not about the World Trade Center. This is not about a particular location.

This is about a need that exists within the Lower Manhattan community and its need that exists within the Muslim community to have a community and a cultural center. And it’s pretty hard finding real estate in New York

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: 'Ground zero mosque' • Houses of worship • Interfaith issues • Islam • Mosque • Muslim

soundoff (433 Responses)
  1. Jeff


    August 9, 2010 at 12:04 am |
  2. Obed

    Where do you get your information?

    August 8, 2010 at 11:34 pm |
  3. Obed

    You don't have a clue. Where do you get your info from?

    August 8, 2010 at 11:32 pm |
  4. Obed

    Are you playing stupid? Because you really sound it.

    August 8, 2010 at 11:27 pm |
  5. Mike Murray MD

    This opposition to the building of a mosque with a place of study is analogous to anti-Semitism and shameful. This low and dishonest attack on America's patriotic Muslims should be condemned by all Christians and Jews. Even the name Cordoba House has been attacked by persons who seem to be totally unencumbered by any knowledge of the Cordoba caliphate. The Catholic rulers, Ferdinand and Isabella, expelled the Jews from Spain in the same year that they abolished the caliphate and completed the Reconquista: 1492.

    August 8, 2010 at 11:08 pm |
  6. tangentlines

    This man has absolutely no resemblance to what a spiritual man is suppose to be! The smug little smile on this arrogant little man does a disservice to his fake cause. His entire demeanor was of a man who is not moderate nor godly, he reminded me of one of those political representatives for an extremist group being interviewed by the BBC lying his butt off. Like all religions the Koran may not say kill anyone but really does that matter? After all the words located inside are meaningless until perceived by the mind of an individual, and it is the perceptions of that individual are what matters. It's just like a Christian warping what Jesus tried to instill in his followers into stoning, mass murder, and excommunications, which they do not have the right to do. But after all there are far too many cases of Muslims killing others for no real reason to not take a closer look at that culture. The location of this Mosque has more to do with the arrogance of a few supporters who care more about their own limited perceptions than the needs of others, which is pretty much the mindset of an extremist.

    August 8, 2010 at 10:52 pm |
  7. jessica

    its amazing how the people on here get angry over racism then fire back with some more racism. bottom line is we are in america. as long as they arent breaking any laws they will be able to do what they want if they own it. if someone is being racist in your eyes, do yourself and everyone a service..be the bigger person. racism is a mental illness in my opinion.

    August 8, 2010 at 10:50 pm |
  8. Gare

    In all honesty, I feel that a mosque is not the best kind thing to build at the Ground Zero site; this goes for any type of building that involves religion of any kind. I feel that since Ground Zero is the largest and most recent place of an attack of terrorism on the U.S., the building should be designated for U.S. history and the trials and tribulations of our country. I could not care less about this being a mosque, but I do feel that any building at Ground Zero should NOT go towards one type of people or religion; it should be for everyone. All people residing in the U.S. should be able to enjoy whatever building goes up here, not just a certain demographic. Personally, race and religion are the least of my concerns when it comes to this building...

    August 8, 2010 at 10:42 pm |
  9. deep dog

    Hey CJN Have you read the Old Testament?...just asking/

    August 8, 2010 at 10:40 pm |
  10. deep dog

    Hey Truth Jesus was just a man..he told you so. He said when you pray say" our father" not my father.

    August 8, 2010 at 10:32 pm |
  11. deep dog

    And I , a LIberal, am completely against it!

    August 8, 2010 at 10:29 pm |
  12. deep dog

    Any way you write,speak,or spell it , it is about the WTC and its location

    August 8, 2010 at 10:28 pm |
  13. Acidsnow

    Part of the problem with Islam is it is sometimes both a religion and the government of some very vocally aggressive nations. Their is no tolerance for other religions in these countries.

    August 8, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  14. Acidsnow

    That's fine. As long as we can move a Victoria's Secret next door and a hot dog vendor on the sidewalk in front of their community center.

    August 8, 2010 at 10:15 pm |
  15. John

    Keep the development of the World Trade Center area secular. No more ideologies – that is what killed the 3000 innocent people in the first place.

    August 8, 2010 at 10:12 pm |
  16. Kathleen

    I don't see why everyone is so bent on knowing where the money is coming from. You don't see people asking about where funds are coming from to build and support churches. But when it comes to a mosque, everyone goes crazy and wants to know how it is being financially supported.

    As citizens we do not have the right to question where money is coming from when it for a religious cause. Just like how we don't have the right to question how much money people donate to churches or any religious center. Part of the reason that the supporters are not disclosing the information could be because they knew they would be faced with the kind of scrutiny and stigma that is happening right now. Why let your self be known when you could be putting yourself in danger?

    August 8, 2010 at 10:02 pm |
  17. Georgy Porgy

    America is a CHRISTIAN NATION. Although muslims have freedom of religion in the US, that doesn't mean they have the right to bring their traditions of honor killing and subjecting women to wearing burkas, or intolerance of other faiths to America. Building an islamic center at the WTC site is an extremely insensitive action that serves to strenghten the perception by non-muslims that the center will symbolize the attacks as a victory of islam over Christian America. Frankly speaking, I think America should reconsider it's attitude of tolerance with respect to Islam. All you have to do is look at how "tolerant" Muslims are to other faiths in the Middle East to realize what could be in store for America. God bless America.

    August 8, 2010 at 9:08 pm |
  18. mellaly

    i love new york, i love islam,i love jews,i love CNN,i love peace....

    August 8, 2010 at 8:51 pm |
  19. fred

    No mosque at Ground Zero. Anywhere else but not GZ. Islam made New York a holy city on 9/11. Sons of Islam made the WTC a holy site on the same day. Can you imagine the reaction if a Christian church was announced for the center of Mecca. Riots, explosions and threats. Mayor B and Mr. Cuomo now being in the last term of their public service are probably looking to become international politicians It's tough for former "yellow dog" Democrats to consider voting Republican. Again. next to my house, yes. Ground Zero, no.

    August 8, 2010 at 8:34 pm |
  20. Pete J

    How does one take "wife beating" out of context?
    Verse 4:34
    Do you really believe that crap?

    Have you answered...if so..i missed it

    August 8, 2010 at 8:31 pm |
    • Jeff

      hi Pete. I replied to your first post.

      August 9, 2010 at 12:41 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.