Volume 20, Number 38 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | September 8 - 14, 201
Imam: Park51 to move forward as planned
Park51, a proposed Islamic Cultural Center, will proceed as planned, according to the Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf of the Cordoba Initiative, the organization sponsoring the project.
In an op-ed piece in the New York Times published Tuesday, the Imam wrote that Park51 will go forward “with the support of the downtown community, government at all levels and leaders from across the religious spectrum, who will be our partners.”
Rauf’s piece repeatedly stressed Park51’s vision of interfaith understanding and dialogue. He noted that the plans call for a prayer center for each of several faiths, and an interfaith memorial for 9/11 victims. He also acknowledged the controversy surrounding the project, as well as the need to recognize the experiences of 9/11 victims’ families.
One protest spawns another
Organizers of the September 11 March and Rally Against Racism and Anti-Muslim Bigotry will hold a Press Conference on Thursday, September 9, at 1 p.m., near the site of the proposed Islamic Center Park51.
The press conference will be held to announce plans for Saturday’s protest, in which thousands of New Yorkers will march to say “NO” to the nationwide racist campaign now targeting Muslims. This anti-racist rally was organized to counter the Tea Party-led hate rally which seeks to stop the Park51 from being built at its proposed site.
The marchers will assemble at 1 p.m. and rally at the east side of City Hall, then march through the downtown area with a final rally at Park Place.
Speakers at the event on September 11 will include former congressmember Cynthia McKinney and former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark, as well as other elected officials and leaders from Muslim, Christian and Jewish congregations in New York City and other parts of the country. Over 100 organizations are co-sponsoring the event.
First trees, now the tridents arrive
Officials gathered on Tuesday to celebrate the return of two tridents to the site of the 9/11 Memorial and Museum.
The 70-foot high, 50-ton columns, known as tridents for their three-pronged tops, are being permanently installed in the future atrium that will form the entrance of the 9/11 Memorial Pavilion. The structures, which were rescued from the rubble of the North Tower, were stored until this week at John F. Kennedy airport with other W.T.C. artifacts. They’re currently shrouded by a white protective covering.
An event was held at noon on Tuesday at 7 World Trade Center, 250 Greenwich Street to celebrate their return to the site. Speakers included Port Authority officials, W.T.C. developer Larry Silverstein, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Governor David Paterson.
Paterson’s moratorium to amount to diddly
The Gov decided to call for a moratorium last Monday; asking that all discussion of Park51 be shelved for a week to respect of the 9/11 anniversary.
Fat chance, Dave; consider Pam Geller’s prediction of the largest caravan and carpool in the history of the world (minus such caravans like the one that transported nearly 300,000 people from New Orleans to Texas and beyond after the greatest natural disaster in our nation’s history) invading Lower Manhattan next Saturday, September 11 to “stop the Islamization of America.”
And the fact that anti-anti-protests have been planned as well, with countless others in the works, would seem to set up a scenario of our lame-duck Gov once again proposing a weightless and fruitless, albeit politically savvy, idea.
BPC to rock the block!
The 9th Annual Battery Park City Block Party will take place on Sunday, September 12, from 11:30 a.m. until 4 p.m. at the Esplanade Plaza, on the south side of North Cove. Admission is free. The fair will feature “creative talent and energy of hundreds of volunteers, local vendors and homegrown performers.”
A host of organizations, businesses and restaurateurs from Battery Park City will be in attendance, and the B.P.C. Bubblegum Bubble-Blowing Contest will take place. There will also be a carnival ride for kids, a sports zone for sports lovers and cooking demonstrations for food junkies.
Community Board 1 member Ruth Ohman will receive a community service award for her support of local senior citizens. The “neighbor of the year” award will go to C.B. 1 member Tom Goodkind for his “continuous flow of good humor, good ideas and good music.”
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