The zoning jihad. Pay attention to it. via Green Bay OKs Velp Avenue site for mosque | greenbaypressgazette.com | Green Bay Press Gazette.
After a sharp debate about religious freedom, the Green Bay City Council agreed Tuesday to allow a mosque in a former bait-and-tackle shop on Velp Avenue.
It is believed to be the first official Muslim house of worship in the city.
Members of a group called the Church of Islam told aldermen that they have been meeting in leased facilities that have become too cramped and uncomfortable.
“I just want a place to pray,” said Kevin Burch, one of several church members who turned out to seek support for the mosque.
The proposal to rezone the former Bob’s Bait and Tackle shop, 1512 Velp Ave., also stirred opposition from a member of the public.
Doug Cayer, who said he lives nearby, said he was concerned about Islamic followers turning radical and potentially disrupting the neighborhood.
“I’m just dead set against this,” he said. “I don’t want something scary coming to my neighborhood.”
Mosque developments have stirred fervent opposition elsewhere — including in New York City currently — since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks perpetrated by Muslim extremist hijackers.
Some aldermen Tuesday voiced concerns about the Velp Avenue mosque generating too much noise or taking industrial property off the tax rolls.
But after an hourlong debate that erupted in shouting more than once, the council voted 9-3 to approve the new house of worship.
Alderman Guy Zima raised several issues with the mosque proposal, including his belief that some followers of Islam are intolerant toward other religions.
“It has been very divisive in other communities,” Zima said.
Those sorts of concerns — and questions directed at church members in the audience by other aldermen — prompted strong reaction from council members who argued that such scrutiny of any person’s religious beliefs were inappropriate.
Alderman Anthony Theisen said other houses of worship have not undergone such questioning.
The property was rezoned from industrial to a commercial usage that allows for a religious institution.
Is the media now calling mosque’s churches? Have Theisen and others actually read the Qur’an and other Islamic texts? Are they aware that Islam is not merely a religion – and not in the Western sense – but a complete way of life? They should have read the ‘Do You Know What a Dhimmi Is?‘ post.