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August 9th, 2013
02:00 PM ET

'No Muslim parking' signs spark outrage

From CNN affiliate KPRC

Houston - New signs posted outside a mosque in Spring Branch, Texas, have sparked outrage from Muslims nationwide.

In black letters, the signs reads, "No Muslim parking in the Westview Shopping Center. Your car will be towed."

The posters lined the street near the El Farouq Mosque, where Muslims heading to worship services said they were were offended.

"I feel sorry for the person who wrote it," Ahmed Hassan told CNN affiliate KPRC. "This is what comes to mind because obviously he has a lot of hate."

"I'm very shocked because we do live in a society that's supposed to be very accepting, and this is what we all preach," said Yara Aboshady. "That we all have the freedom of religion."

The parking signs were mentioned Thursday in an newsletter from the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslims civil rights group.

In recent years, Muslims have faced protests nationwide when trying to construct new mosques, including in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, where mosque opponents have filed an appeal with the state supreme court to block construction.

The El Farouq Mosque sits across the street from the shopping center. Store employees did not want to go on camera for KPCR but did say they get angry when mosque members park in their lot, taking up spots meant for customers.

With the Muslim monthlong fast for the holy month of Ramadan ending and a crowd expected at the mosque, the signs anonymously appeared.

No shopping center employees would admit to posting the signs. One worker said the shopping center owner, Steve Kwon, posted the signs. He denied it.

"I did not put up the signs," Kwon said. After speaking with KPRC, Kwon removed the signs.

Aboshady wondered about the sign writer's true motive.

"It could be no parking for the sake of patrons that come in," Aboshady said. "Or it really could be a prejudice and just a mean thing to say."

She and others still find the signs insensitive and offensive.

"It's really offensive and it's hateful," Hassan said.

The shopping center owner says he will call a tow company to try to get all of the cars that shouldn't be parked there out. He also says he'll be checking the property to make there are no more of the offensive parking signs.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Discrimination • Eid al-Fitr • Holidays • Islam • Mosque • Muslim • Ramadan • United States

soundoff (1,063 Responses)
  1. Sam Yaza

    damn you people sicken me

    August 13, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
  2. Syed Kaiser

    I think he meant to write "mosque visitors" because most of the illegal parkings may have been mosque visitors. Need to be more cautious in the future as this could very well be misinterpreted. Having said that, I think the mosque should take action on their side to make sure they are not causing problems for the surrounding businesses.

    August 13, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
  3. e4ed

    Simple misunderstanding....blown out of proportion....business owners used poor wording (by explicitly calling out Muslims) but its not uncommon to have signs put up to prohibit use of business parking spaces by a neighboring organization....

    August 12, 2013 at 9:42 pm |
    • Misssmartypants

      It's not a simple misunderstanding..it's a blatant prejudice. IF the sign said no Christian Parking I'm sure there would have been quite an uproar. Just say Shopper parking only, makes more sense and doesn't offend an entire group of people for no reason except hatred and ignorance. Is it okay to park there if I am not a shopper and not a muslim?? Probably not, so the sign is inaccurate, ineffective and offensive..three reasons to take it down.

      August 28, 2013 at 5:52 pm |
  4. children of Israel

    Warning, when you read the Bible you must take the I, my and we out of your heart. And the most high God he will tell you who those people are. Stay away from culture, because it is a cult u r Esau. Come back to your heritage & be blessed. (Jeremiah 17:4)

    August 12, 2013 at 8:26 pm |
    • HITLER WAS A CHRISTIAN

      BULLSHIT. THE BIBLE IS WHERE HITLER GOT HIS IDEAS.

      August 12, 2013 at 9:05 pm |
  5. NorCalMojo

    How many times a year does CNN use "sparks outrage" in a headline?

    August 12, 2013 at 8:12 pm |
    • Patricia Alberts

      Not nearly as often as 'Faux News'...

      August 13, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
    • Small 'c'

      I haven't counted, but the word sure applies to at least fifty percent of wingnuts who post here.

      August 14, 2013 at 12:29 am |
    • optikradio

      Too many times. More often than not, it's CNN that's stoking the outrage. It's getting disgusting.

      August 24, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
  6. children of Israel

    Those wearing scarves around their neck that is the Devil and his wardrobe, especially those cunning purple ties. Remember the song, the one eyed flying purple people eater it's a halloween favorite. (Exodus 28:15) *James 1:11*

    August 12, 2013 at 7:58 pm |
  7. children of Israel

    72 virgins of Mohammed vs 10 virgins & five are foolish. Why are people worshipping on sunrise Sunday, because they have become satanists by transforming themselves against the most high God. *Ezekiel 8:16 and they worshipped the sun toward the east. *Galatians 5:6 but faith which worketh love. *John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.

    August 12, 2013 at 7:38 pm |
    • Commonly Sensed

      Blah blah BLAH BLAH blah blah blah blahblahblahblah. BlaH, blah BLAH blah blah Bluh blah, blah blah.

      August 12, 2013 at 7:41 pm |
    • Small 'c'

      What little credibility you once had vanished when you invoked Sheb Wolley. Don't think you'll find his words in any religious book- no matter what faith.

      August 14, 2013 at 12:30 am |
  8. FAT AND HUGE

    HAHAHAHAHAHA

    August 12, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
  9. children of Israel

    Are you lost sheep or goats? Those unbelievers have returned to their own vomit, worshipping other gods. God is not the God of the dead, but the living. *John 11:14 Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. *Isaiah 38:18 For the grave cannot praise thee, death can not celebrate thee: they that go down into the pit cannot hope for thy truth.

    August 12, 2013 at 7:12 pm |
  10. children of Israel

    Computers are running on real time to update their lies. Athesists have become the Devil's bargaining chip for the satanists (Matthew 8:12). When death comes to the door, what will unbelievers have to say then? Our God is on time *Malachi 3:6 For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed. *Romans 1:25 Who change the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

    August 12, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
    • Shootmyownfood

      Got any words of stupidity for me. I am a PAGAN. (Not the motorcycle club, either.)

      August 13, 2013 at 3:30 pm |
  11. davidscallion

    The sign is not really hateful, unless somebody is easily offended. But it should just read, "parking for store customers only". That's really what they meant anyway.

    August 12, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
    • dandi

      Yeah, but the Liberal Poutrage Brigade isn't going to see it that way. They never miss an opportunity to keep the religion/class/race pot stirred.

      August 12, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
      • dondi

        Poutrage is a term first coined to describe Hannity, Rush, Jones, O'Reilly, et al. Own it, bitches; don't project.

        August 13, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
    • ryan

      It should have said that but it didn't. I certainly do not think that it was an accidental oversight on the behalf of the writer of the sign. Obviously that person was targeting the mosque patrons. If it was a Christian chuch patroned by mostly African-Americans and the sign read "No Black Parking" do you not think it would be a hate-inspired sign?

      August 12, 2013 at 5:57 pm |
    • Shirouk

      Baloney. The sign isn't hateful. What's hateful is killing people simply because they are not Muslims. Yeah, that's what Muslims do.

      August 12, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
      • Lisa Marin

        No, that is what Christians due to Islamics, just read the history of the Crusades when Christian invaded a foreign land.

        August 12, 2013 at 7:17 pm |
        • MaryAnn

          How many centuries ago ??? Can't we all just get along???

          August 12, 2013 at 10:18 pm |
        • dondi

          Are we reading the same thread??? Most people agree with this sign. No, "we" obviously can't just all get along.

          August 13, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
        • KLARGAR

          Except for one simple fact imbecile, the Muslims conquered the entire Middle East by force when they rode out of the Arabian peninsula murdering everyone in their path who did not convert. The crusades were a visceral response to several hundred years of Islamic murder and depravity.

          August 15, 2013 at 10:07 am |
        • In Santa we trust

          K, Christians have also done their fair share of killing.

          August 28, 2013 at 6:01 pm |
  12. Susan StoHelit

    Signs like this are put up all the time, "No church parking" for a shopping center near a church.

    I suspect the person who put these up was working for the center, but sat there and thought, "Now, what was the name for the place Muslims go to pray? How is it spelled? I don't know, so I'll just go with no Muslims". Ignorant, but not intending to be excluding people based on religion, merely people based on if they are customers or worshippers.

    August 12, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
    • spock

      Very doubtful. Much more likely the poster was trying to show his/her antagonism to the mosque members with a "no parking we don't like your kind anyhow" sign. Truly not American in spirit. If he/she were "ignorant" of what they said, as you are conjecturing - why hasn't he/she apologized for the mishap?

      August 12, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
      • Small 'c'

        Perhaps they have. Just not here. After all, the entire world does not actually revolve around a CNN blog, does it?

        Perhaps for some, it does.

        August 12, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
      • Dave

        If they didn't mean anything by it why apologize? Let people think what they want because they can't see what is in your heart.

        August 12, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
      • dandi

        How do you know they haven't? Or wer they supposed to notify you personally of the outcome?

        August 12, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
      • ryan

        I agree. It wouldn't have been difficult to go across the street to find out the name of the mosque or how to spell mosque. I think it pretty naive to assume the person was implying "no church (mosque) parking" and not something more aggressive towards Muslims. It would have been much easier to have written "Customer Parking Only" instead.

        August 12, 2013 at 6:06 pm |
      • Weekly Reader

        Spock–private parties are generally allowed to exclude almost anybody from their private property (of course I suppose the result could be different if the shopping center has received any federal or state funds). Accordingly, there might be nothing to apologize about except to the owners of this shopping center who are losing business when a "Shopping Center Parking Only" sign would have done the trick without angering potential customers from the mosque.

        August 12, 2013 at 6:23 pm |
    • S.M.

      Could have been an honest mistake if the shopping center employees are idiots.. that's completely possible. However, it just comes across as hateful... A simple, "Customer Parking Only, All others will be towed at owners expense", usually works fine.

      August 12, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • Shirouk

      totally agree. We see "no church parking" frequently on Sundays. Muslims (and CAIR, their mega-lobby) are simply plying the politically-correct naiete of westerners to expand and win favor. Anybody studying even a superficial history of Islam will quickly learn how hateful Islam is to non-Muslims. This is a joke.

      August 12, 2013 at 6:58 pm |
  13. Lexcorp

    Its clear they meant no Mosque parking...common sense here people

    August 12, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
  14. children of Israel

    Galatians 5:7 Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth? (Mark 5:7)

    August 12, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      LET's Religiosity Law #3 – If you habitually spout off verses from your "holy" book to make whatever inane point you're trying to make, and not once does it occur to you to question whether your book is accurate in the first place, then you are definitely mentally retarded.

      August 12, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
    • EnjaySea

      King James translation? Really?

      Dude, step into the 21st century and update your Bible. We don't say "ye" anymore, and neither did Jesus.

      August 12, 2013 at 5:50 pm |
      • Shirouk

        why not? He likes King James. You have an issue with his preference?

        August 12, 2013 at 6:59 pm |
      • Shootmyownfood

        I"m pretty sure Jesus never saw the King James version of the bible, or any other version, since it was compiled after his death.

        August 13, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
        • Perhaps...

          That and he spoke ancient Aramic and the Bible was written in ancient Hebrew and Greek. No thoust, thee, thys there.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
        • Htown

          True he knew the Heat would win and he hates cleveland. Thats why he let King James go to Miami. He is punsihing cleveland.

          September 7, 2013 at 11:36 am |
  15. children of Israel

    Genesis 49:12 His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk. (Matthew 26:29) The end of America is *Revelation 9:11

    August 12, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • spock

      Oh be quite dork. NO PARKING for YOU here!

      August 12, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
    • jim

      It's pretty arrogant to assume that the Revelation refers to one specific country. Maybe John's vision was of Costa Rica, or Lithuania?

      August 12, 2013 at 5:53 pm |
    • Shootmyownfood

      A little full of yourself, aren't you, to assume that a book written before the Western discovery of North America meant one state of that continent. How foolish!

      August 13, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
  16. children of Israel

    Stop judging folks by their skin color, the world is calling us black. Is your skin color brown, then speak up. What happened to the dark continent? (Exodus 11:7). Africans are finished, and the Chinese are trembling *Exodus 15:15 Then the dukes of Edom shall be amazed; (1st Chronicles 1:51) *Jeremiah 11:9 And the Lord said unto me, A conspiracy is found among the men of Judah, and among the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

    August 12, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
    • optikradio

      Islam is not a "skin color", it's a set of ideas, bad ideas. Respect people, not ideas.

      August 24, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
  17. children of Israel

    Do you believe Christ came in the flesh, and his father is Joseph the carpenter? (Matthew 13:55). Stop worshipping wood and stone. (Revelation 9:20) Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. *Job 9:24 The earth is given into the hand of the wicked: he covereth the faces of the judges thereof, if not, where, and who is he? (Revelation 1:18)

    August 12, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
  18. children of Israel

    Martin Luther King jr was a false prophet, for not reading the Bible (Jeremiah 23:25). From Bengazi to they always been a nazi, followers of Martin Luther. Are you truthfully speaking or honestly lying? Christ is an Israelite, if you deny truth, the Father will deny you.

    August 12, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
    • Akira

      MLK has never been considered a prophet. Jeremiah 23:25 has nothing to do with his famous "I had a dream" speech. You're reaching, kevobox.

      Benghazi and Nazis have nothing to do with MLK, either. Put the sacrificial wine down; it's too early.

      August 12, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
      • dandi

        Sacremental wine.

        August 12, 2013 at 5:39 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          Sacramental

          August 27, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          People can't spell worth a damn anymore...

          August 27, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
      • ARMYCSM

        ROFLMAO while spitting water (thank goodness) all over my keyboard. HaHaHaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

        August 27, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
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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.