You've got to hand it to the folks building the mosque right near Ground Zero in Manhattan.
They've got the right and the left agreeing on one thing -- this is the hot topic to talk about.
So what exactly are they saying?
We know President Barack Obama thinks the Cordoba House's construction is proof that America can win the war on terrorism. Because of "our capacity to show not merely tolerance, but respect to those who are different from us," we will prevail.
Or maybe not.
Republican Senator David Vitter's just incorporating the fight into his campaign, taking to Twitter to cast a pallor on his Democratic opponent Rep. Charlie Melancon:
"Obama’s support of building the mosque at Ground Zero is a slap in the face. Melancon’s silence on this is troubling.#Louisiana#LaSen#latcot"
Over at Red State they'll support a mosque -- built in another country, and dedicated to the memories of those who died on 9/11. Their basis? King Solomon:
"So how might Solomon answer this current request? I take a stab at the answer below the fold.
“Sure. Build your mosque. But it’s important that it be done right.
“So we need a model.
“Pick the Middle Eastern capital of your choice: Amman, Damascus, Cairo, Riyadh, Teheran ... it makes little difference. Build your model mosque there, and dedicate it to the memory of the 3,000 innocents."
The members of the Dove World Outreach Center -- the same people who set up "Islam is the Devil" signs in front of their Florida church last year -- aren't going to sit on their hands with this one. They're planning a Koran burning right in front of the Cordoba House site. To which the Daily Kos says:
"I'm not talking about one or two knucklehaids getting drunk and deciding to play with matches. This is an organized effort by some truly sick asshats .... Freedom of speech is fine, but they need to get a clear message: People died for your right to be an asshole. That doesn't mean you should expect to get away without consequences. Dishonor our fallen and we will rain hellfire down on you."
A Hamas leader has weighed in -- any surprise? The Huffington Post paraphrased Mahmoud al-Zahar:
"Muslims 'have to build everywhere' so that followers can pray, just like Christians and Jews build their places of worship."
The planners of Cordoba House aren't hiding: They're praying! As explained on Twitter, they're celebrating Ramadan:
"For the record: We are only entertaining TV requests where we will be able to present our project after Ramadan from 9/14 on."
Sarah Palin still has questions for the president. A whole series:
"Mr. President, should they or shouldn't they build a Muslim mosque steps away from where radical Islamists killed 3000 people? Your position?
"We all know that they have the right to do it, but should they? This is not above your pay grade.
"Mr. President, why are they so set on marking an area w/ mosque steps from what you described, in agreement with many, as 'hallowed ground'?"
The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder answers her:
"Even if Osama Bin Laden is not wrong, our national security is predicated on convincing Muslims that he is wrong. It should come as no surprise that Obama supports the mosque's construction: what could be a more powerful counter-argument to the idea that the West is warring with Islam than the American president endorsing the construction of a mosque a few blocks away from a sacred site?"
And how about an answer from the independents? Former Republican Charlie Crist of Florida is on Obama's side:
"I think he's right -- I mean you know we're a country that in my view stands for freedom of religion and respect for others. 'I know there are sensitivities and I understand them. This is a place where you're supposed to be able to practice your religion without the government telling you you can't.'"
Of course, NY has a bigger problem. This Daily News headline says it all:
"Mosque gets all the press, but area near Ground Zero full of bars, porn, liquor stores, salons."
Sounds like a happening place.
Image via Cordoba House