Opposition erupts in town over planned Muslim community center

Support our flag. Get the bumper sticker. CLICK HERE

An attempt by the nonprofit group Bayonne Muslims to open a community center at a location in Bayonne, New Jersey, did not get the required number of votes to allow its opening.

A seven-member board voted 4-3 in favor of the proposal, but five votes were needed to secure an approval.

The group has been renting a space for years in the basement of the closed St. Henry’s School, located at 27th Street and Avenue C, as a temporary place of worship.

The Bayonne Muslims have been trying since August 2015 to open a community center that would offer prayer halls, classrooms, and a soup kitchen, as well as become a permanent home for the group.

Only one witness testified at the board meeting. John McDonough, a professional planner, stated that the community center would not be a parking problem during peak hours. He was in favor of the community center, saying, “This land use, by its very nature, protects the public good.”

However, before the board voted, there was a public meeting held at Bayonne High School which was attended by a large group of people who were against the plan, citing potential parking issues and traffic problems.

There were also multiple commissioners against the center who said it would not be “appropriate for the area.”

Related News: Muslim group slams Oklahoma lawmaker over questionnaire

Mark Urban, the chairman of the board said, “As a Bayonne resident, I’m embarrassed at some of the comments I heard tonight.”

One resident, who attended the hearing and spoke during the open public comment section of the meeting, cited verses from the Qur’an as a reason for not approving the Muslim center.

The meeting was suspended prematurely for recess after hundreds of people began to get aggravated. When the meeting resumed, Urban told the crowd that no more comments on religion would be addressed from the audience.

Urban said “We are not going there. This is a zoning issue only.”

When the vote finally came, those opposed to the proposal applauded.

Since the proposal was introduced in August 2015, the Muslim community center has been one of Bayonne’s most controversial topics.

In October, Muslims who showed up at their place of worship in the basement of the St. Henry’s School building were greeted with anti-Muslim graffiti on the windows and walls outside of the building. Someone was eventually arrested for the crime.

One of the opponents to the Muslim center was a local pastor who called it a “mosque” and put up signs on his house stating “Stop the Mosque” and “Save Bayonne.”

The pastor wound up having his house vandalized with graffiti, soon thereafter.

Screen Shot 2017-03-07 at 10.43.42 AM

H/T: NJ.com

JOIN THE MOVEMENT to SAVE THE NATIONAL ANTHEM
Please join the thousands of DML readers who have purchased a bumper sticker. CLICK HERE.

If you would like to receive Breaking News text alerts on a smartphone or tablet, download the DML APP which is completely FREE and easy to use. Go to the Google Play Store or the IOS App Store and search for DML APP. Be sure to keep the app’s notifications setting on. Another way to receive alerts is to text to 40404 the following message: follow @realdennislynch (be sure to put a space between the word follow and the @ symbol).

To see more stories like this, sign up below for Dennis Michael Lynch’s email newsletter.







 

Comment via Facebook

Send this to a friend