Sources in New York said on Monday that Muslim religious and business leaders will announce plans to abandon the project in the next few days.
New York Governor David Patterson said last weekend that Muslim leaders had rejected outright his proposal tto swap the site in for another in Manhattan.
But several people familiar with the debate among New York’s Islamic activists now claim that the leaders are convinced abandoning the site is preferable to unleashing a wave of bitterness towards Muslims.
They also hope the move will be seen as a show of sensitivity to families of the victims of the 9/11 attacks, and to the American public generally.
I don’t know if this will end up being accurate. I can’t vouch for their sources. I will say that I personally would see the move as a show of sensitivity, and applaud them for doing so.
This, for me, was never about their legal right to build – that is settled. I know they have the legal right to build. It was about the wisdom of doing so, which President Obama backtracking on his previous comments made in his Ramadan speech said was not meant to be comment on the wisdom of building the mosque there. We know that President Obama *never* involves himself in local decisions. Also coming out today Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said that they should build somewhere else.
The outcry against this was bipartisan in nature lest anyone think that Republicans now have a majority in New York or think that Juan Williams, Harry Reid and Joe Lieberman are closet Republicans. Anyway, if this is true I am thankful they are exercising wisdom and true sensitivity. That will go further in their goal to promote cultural sensitivity than building at the proposed site.