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Rebuffed Muslims invite St. Anthony residents to meal

8 August 2012 General 38 Comments Email This Post Email This Post

Leaders whose plans for an Islamic center were rejected want to increase understanding of their faith in St. Anthony.

Muslim supporters of a proposed Islamic center rejected by St. Anthony elected leaders plan to host a Ramadan meal Thursday in an effort to share their faith with non-Muslims, organizers say.

Dozens of people are expected to participate in the traditional meal known as an iftar, which ends the daily fast, scheduled for 7 p.m. at the St. Anthony Community Center at city hall.

Advocates for the Abu Huraira Islamic Center decided to hold the iftar to “develop understanding” after anti-Islamic comments were made by St. Anthony residents at a City Council meeting where members voted down the proposed center. The center had been planned for the basement of the former Medtronic headquarters.

“This is great opportunity for us to … get to know our neighbors,” said Sadik Warfa, a spokesman for the Islamic center. “We want to reach out to our neighbors of all faiths in the St. Anthony Village area. It’s really meant to create a positive atmosphere and friendships with our neighbors.”

The Minnesota Council of Churches is helping sponsor the iftar, which recently was added to the list of public iftars being held at metro-area mosques during Ramadan. Muslims fast from dawn to dusk during the month-long sacred period, which this year began July 19. Iftar meals often are open to non-Muslims.

Gail Anderson, a director at the Council of Churches who helped organize the iftars, said the St. Anthony iftar could bring “the fear level way down” and help Muslims “build relationships in the community.”

“It’s just a lot people really wanting to know each other better and understand each other better,” Anderson said.

Incompatible with zoning?

The St. Anthony City Council rejected plans for the Islamic center in June, arguing it was incompatible with the building’s light-industrial zoning. At the meeting, some St. Anthony opponents of the plan said the Muslim center was not welcome and made disparaging remarks about the Muslim faith. At least one resident said Islam is “evil” and embraces violence.

The Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) asked the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate allegations of anti-Muslim bias in the council’s action. The U.S. attorney’s office has visited the proposed Islamic center site and is interviewing people about the council action, said spokeswoman Jeanne Cooney. She said her office hopes to “resolve this matter to the satisfaction of all parties,” but could pursue litigation if it finds that the council action violated federal law.

Nationally, the Justice Department has launched investigations into 28 similar cases, according to the American-Islamic Council. In the case of St. Anthony, it asked federal authorities to determine whether the action violated the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, which “protects religious institutions from unduly burdensome or discriminatory land-use regulations.”

City leaders say they did not discriminate against the Muslim group in denying the Islamic center.

Warfa, the spokesman for the Islamic center, said he hopes City Council members and other St. Anthony government leaders will attend the iftar. Since the council’s decision, St. Anthony churches have held an interfaith gathering that encouraged Christians and Muslims to learn about the two faiths. St. Anthony City Manager Mark Casey said Tuesday he was not aware of the iftar and did not know whether city officials would attend.

Lori Saroya, executive director of CAIR-Minnesota, said the iftar is a “great idea” that can lead to better understanding between Muslims and non-Muslims.

“It was so horrible to see all those comments [at city council meeting],” Saroya said. “I think it’s a positive thing to have this gathering … sharing their faith and culture with others.”

Rose French • 612-673-4352

Original post: Rebuffed Muslims invite St. Anthony residents to meal


  1. So why would non muslims welcome muslims and a mosque into their presence? I wait for muslims to quit ignoring what is going on in the real world.

    Its like the KKK – wears disguises, bears violent contempt for others, Jews especially, lives in dream world of its own perfection, wants to destroy Christianity. What’s not to like?

  2. Dear Anon, why don’t you and Jane go skip off somewhere else with your hate? Why do you even hang out on this site? To disprove the concept of Islamophobia? Is that purpose? Get a life, and go hate somewhere else. Or better yet, why not ask God to forgive you for your hateful feelings and develop some understanding.

  3. Oh, excuse me for not proofing my last post to anon, who might think I am an ignorant Muslim who can’t construct an English sentence. Is that your purpose, anon…is what I meant to type. I am not ignorant, I believe in God and I believe in learning and appreciating others’ cultures and beliefs. There are evil people in every faith who use a bastardized interpretation of their core beliefs to oppress others for their own personal gains. You cannot generalize about a religion based upon groups or individuals within that religion whose actions against others is evil and summarize that the whole religion is evil. I don’t know or what you are or what group you belong to, but I would not go that far to say that who ever you belong to are bad people, but you as an individual, who does have the right of freedom of speech, present yourself to be biased and prejudice. Do you even really know a Muslim or his or her family? How can judge? I will say a prayer for you this evening that God soften your mind and heart. Peace

  4. Anon,
    If i am going to pass judgements on other faiths i would try first reading and understanding the faith not rely on the interpretations of media and people who have not read Qur’an or understood the pillars of Islam from Muslims themselves.
    Read understanding Islam: an introduction by C. T. I Hewer.

    I think anon’s passionate accusations can turn into something beautiful once he or she understands Islam’s message. I love for my brothers in humanity as i love for my self and of course since we believe that Islam came to re-affirm the message that there is no God but one God and that all prophets are his servants, we would not want you to miss on the real commonalities and differences between Islam, Christianity, and Judaism.

  5. It was not all that long ago in human history, Anon, and for many many centuries, that Christians had extreme hatred towards Jews, and many still do. Do you remember Nazi Germany, a “Christian” state? Do you remember hearing about South Africa up until the 1990s, a “Christian state” that supported Apartheid? How many Christians in this country own guns and turn them on other people? Wanting to exterminate Christians — what about the murders at the Sikh temple in Wisconsin this past week? The point is, there is plenty of hate and finger pointing to go around. Many so-called Christians are just as full of hate as many Muslims and equally, there are many Christians and Muslims who are NOT full of hate and want to get along and recognize that this world is too small for us not to learn how to live together.

  6. Kill the unbelievers, Raidah!

    Islam looks and sounds like a hate group and is being treated as such in US.

  7. Exactly. A religion is whatever the believers make it.

    God is love, Torquemada said, as he lit the match. Kill the Jews and sundry others, say bigwigs at al Azhar and numerous imams.

    Islam is an abstraction, as is any other religion. It does not do things. Men and women do things. In the grip of delusions, they may do terrible things.

  8. raidah, hind, laura,

    so what do ya’ll think of the opening of the 24th surah? how about the hadiths where muhammad stones people to death? is that a little judgemental? so is it hateful to impose hudud? did muhammad respect the pagan’s culture?

  9. anon, you fail to disappoint me! What do unbelievers have to do with this. Your sarcasm makes me sad. I have worked my whole adult life to care for people in their times of sickness and that includes people who are ignorant and hateful. I cannot judge them, and in faith and sense of duty, I go on each day. I wasn’t raised a Muslim, but in a home environment that promoted racism and bigotry. I am thankful that God opened my mind and heart to consider everyone to be my brothers and sisters. What extremists of any religion believe, teach, and do poison everyone: those whose minds they corrupt, their victims who they oppress, society who they instill fear, misunderstanding, and hate. People like the Taliban and other fundamentalist extremists are truly misguided by their own personal conquest of power. They corruptly misinterpret the words of the Quran and teach others who cannot read the Quran and perpetuate their own law. The same goes for Christian fundamentalist, take those Baptist zealots from that Kansas church, whose members demonstrate at the funerals of our fallen servicemen and women. “We need more dead soldiers” something appearing on their placards! Wow! I am a member of the armed forces of the US myself. I believe in one’s freedom of speech, and I will fight to defend our rights. But I too have rights as a citizen of this country. My religion is peaceful religion. I don’t take words out of context from Quran for my own benefit or good. I pray peace in the world and the end of oppression by those who corrupt God’s word on his people. I pray for peace and understanding among His creation. Peace to you, Brother.

  10. All religions are man-made. They all contain flaws and hence they are what we make them out to be. There are good muslims who make Islam to be peace and there are the opposite variety as well.

    Point is that by design, Islam has 2 MAJOR flaws

    a) Its scholars have taken it to an evolutionary dead end by drilling it into the heads of the faithful (and perhaps quoting Islamic scriptures) that Mo is PERFECT, Islam is PERFECT, and no one can come after Mo (second coming of Jesus is supposedly to parrot Mo’s Qu-RANT). Such a “Self check mate” position resists evolution. as we can see now. So the mind set of sharia lovers is stuck in 7th century Arabia.

    b) Since it was designed by a bunch of semi-scholars and powerful tribal families headed by Mo’s trusted, it combined your typical “spirituality & societal rules/methods” with nakedly reggressive and aggressively ambitious politico-econo-militaristic DOCTRINE. Thus were born the super lame SHARIA and DAR-UL-HARB concepts.

    It is only in the last 10 years that the West is beginning to wake up to the real Islam. For those of us who have seen its naked dance, we can predict how it will grow within bengin host.

    Welcome Muslims by all means, but check the doctrine at every and all levels. Sharia lovers will start effecting your day to day lives thus
    a) halal food ….(additional cost passed to the consumer)
    b) prayer breaks
    c) ramadan special facilities at work
    d) neighborhoods where sharia rules roost (check out the UK: luton, manchester, east london etc.,)
    e) special rules at all places to let them inhabit wearing gunnybags (Few years ago in London a very religious woman jumped in to the Gym swimmingpool with a full burkha. Another religious woman police officer refused to shake hands with her senior when he was on a visit…both were reported in the local papers).
    f) Islamic banking (turning the banking system upside down)
    g) political blocs (sharia lovers hate democracty. They fantasize a CALIPHATE. In which Non-muslims are 3rd class citizens and have to pay a Jiziya tax ofupto 70%).
    h) ……I hope it stops there but for us, it went on and on to a tragic end and then some…

    Love the Muslim, but screw the doctrine. Always be firm in this aspect.

  11. Wonderful to see peaceful methods used instead of more shouting and insults. Hopefully this will inspire more Muslims to engage in similar acts of peaceful kindness to win the hearts of their neighbors. The truth is that the majority of any major group of people an normal, trying to live day to day, accomplish their modest dreams of love, success, and contentment, and pose no real threat to others. However, that truth often gets buried under the flood of violence coming out of the middle east. The solution is to present a friendly, charitable face to hold up against the images seen on TV. That’s what these community members appear to be doing, and God bless them for it.

  12. I want to set the record straight about Germany being a Christian nation during WWII. It was not a Christian nation under Hitler, here is his views on Christianty.

    “There is also no compromise. We Germans have been called upon by Fate to be the first to break with Christianity. It is an honor. A thousand blows tie us to the Christian belief, but one blow will make us free. To make ourselves strong and ripe for this step, is our task of holiest obligation. . . . The age of Christian civilization is past. Only German civilization has anything to say. We are Germans. Therefore we cannot be Christians.3”

    So lets not attach the Holocaust to Christianty

  13. Aikido, I read articles in the london papers about Sharia being imposed in Luton and east London. What it seems is that there is an attempt to do so by small groups. I felt sorry for the woman in the drug store who was given a death threat for opposing the men and now may lose her job due to fear by the owners. I do not think that would work well in the United States. We are armed here. A person may threaten you once but the next time they enter the store they are likely to be shot if not arrested by police. A small minority can cause a lot of problems in an area where people are basically not allowed to defend themselves, but that is not the case here. Its sort of like gangs, they work well in the cities which have massive gun control, but they do not do well in small towns or midsize towns in areas where the people basically protect themselves.

  14. As long as Islam has men at the top screaming for death and destruction of their fellow humans and financing those efforts, it will be classified as a hate group.

  15. This article is about a land use issue. Such issues can be resolved by recognizing basic legal rights and separating out laws from emotions and fears. Been through this situation myself, including a thorough USDOJ Civil Rights Division investigation (during the GWB administration). I hope the community can find peace, understanding and reconciliation.

  16. larry,

    sup? get these guys back on topic. our resident land use expert. religious center in the basement of a building in a light industrial park? is that what we are talking about? so do you agree with the ruling?

    what is the address of this building? how many stories is it? 15,000 square foot basement? 200 people in the congregation. Medtronic is a fortune 500 company. doubt they were in some half assed building. i thought many of the muslims in minnesota are somalis? where ARE they getting all this money from?


    scroll all the way down to VIII. COMMUNITY FORUM.

    so what makes a mosque a mosque?


    1.8 million. that’s a nice chunk of change for a 200 person congregation?

  19. Wahabbis from soddy arabia are funding mosques worldwide. I suppose they have a right to spend their money as they choose.

  20. “Wahabbis from soddy arabia are funding mosques worldwide. I suppose they have a right to spend their money as they choose.”

    And others have the right to object against their hyprocrisy.

    And sometimes zoning laws aren’t just there to annoy muslims.

  21. jane,

    you should google earth it. i don’t see how this space wouldn’t be appropriate. 3055 old hwy 8. they have plenty of parking and they are bordered by two roads. a major one (divided highway) to the back of their property and the old hwy 8 segregates the residential area across the street from them.

  22. Mike,

    As a matter of fact I am experienced in land use issues. And, yes, public assembly zoning designation is compatible with light industrial. Happens all the time as a special or conditional use to allow for exactly this type of situation. Where do they get their money? Has nothing to do with a zoning issue. Something else you should know is that federal prosecutors really, really, really like their jobs. The St. Anthony governing board should get their documentation in order, or work the Village Hall shredders overtime.

  23. larry,

    “As a matter of fact I am experienced in land use issues.” i know you are. sorry i wasn’t being sarcastic. you have chimmed in before on land use issues. and only land use issues. it struck me as funny.
    “And, yes, public assembly zoning designation is compatible with light industrial. Happens all the time as a special or conditional use to allow for exactly this type of situation.” i agree. as i say above.
    “Where do they get their money? Has nothing to do with a zoning issue.” i agree again, as stated in the tennessee mosque article.
    “Something else you should know is that federal prosecutors really, really, really like their jobs.” i think everyone knows that.
    “The St. Anthony governing board should get their documentation in order,” absolutely. but i think a small town can council can always claim ignorance of the federal law. what is the worst that would happen. atorney fees to the plaintifs. doubt anyone will see a cell. it’s not their money anyways.
    “or work the Village Hall shredders overtime.” you are advising a cover up. that hasn’t worked since the 60’s. shit the meetings are on online already.

  24. A few observations: First, why is the county commissioner concerned about an 8,000+ sq ft building being on the County tax roll; second, keep an eye on your local elected officials because they have been known to vote on laws without knowing or understanding what they are voting on, or the consequences of their actions.

    This should not result in a federal USDOJ investigation, but if it does the County doesn’t have a case. Having been involved in a USDOJ RLUIPA federal investigation (mosque related) let me assure everyone here that federal prosecutors really enjoy their jobs and get up in the morning hoping for such a case.

    //Lawrence DiRe via Facebook
    22 May 2012 at 6:01 am

  25. This posting is about a land use case involving the right of private property owners to use their land as the law allows for, right? Not sure where Nazis or door to door surveying of 1.5 billon people matters, but hey, must be open ended this week.

    //Lawrence DiRe
    24 May 2011 at 10:20 am larry,

    its always “open ended”. but your right, this is a property rights issue, let them build their mosque. what are we lowering ourselves to the level of the saudi’s?

    25 May 2011 at 10:28 am 100% with you Mike. LOL.

    //Lawrence DiRe
    25 May 2011 at 10:36 am

    not sure why but it looks like you can’t link islampphobiatoday to itself anymore. i miss duece prez, don’t you larry? how about yazeed?

  26. Mike,

    It ain’t the meetings that are online that are the problem. Lots of decisions, at all levels of government, are made in a decidedly “offline” context. If you get my drift. And that’s why it’s best to keep the feds away. As for small town attorney not knowing the RLUIPA law, “…if a policeman must know the Constitution, then why not a planner?” Justice Brennan.

  27. LR,

    yeah i get your drift. we have a “sunshine law” in florida. that doesn’t mena backroom meetings aren’t still where the rubber meets the road. and yes, ignorance of the law is no defense. i’m just saying that a cover up might get you some jail time. where as right now just saying, “we didn’t understand the federal law” of course they can buy the building now that you have explained our obligations under the freedom of religious land use act, or whatever it is called, RLUIPA law.

    come on. you know no one knows all the laws. especially not city councils. shit (sorry for my rude language) you said it “second, keep an eye on your local elected officials because they have been known to vote on laws without knowing or understanding what they are voting on, or the consequences of their actions” but they should have a legal department to advise them. shit i remember my dad asking my sister (she’s a lawyer) a legal question about visas before their trip over seas. my sister’s reply was, “they don’t teach you law in law school, just how to research it”. also the one time i was arrested was for a municipal ordinance violation. you know what the judge said before he ror’ed me. “i don’t even know what the law is for this”. that’s what the judge said. you do know we have more laws than carter’s got little liver pills. no one is really expected to know all the laws. the constitution is a tiny document compared to all (city, county, state, federal) legislative law and case law.

  28. Suckshito,
    Religions are not manmade, they are followed and distorted by humans. See, BDSM cartoon Hinduism says of One God, but you have invented 33 crore gods. No religion has flaws; it is just people like you and co. who give them bad names.
    Why after my Prophet alone? Moses is the perfect to Jews, Jesus to Christians, Buddha to the Buddhists. BDSM cartoon Hinduism has several revered figures. Hence, their followers all commit crime. But you don’t seem to be angry to them; your wrath is on Muslims, Islam and the Muslims’ prophet only.
    On Jesus: we don’t believe He died on the cross. It is normal conscience; how can a dead person return from the other world to convert others? Moreover, when he could not save himself from torture of some pagans and his own kinsmen, how and why should he save others? Your mindset is stuck in your asshole and the BDSM cartoon of the barbaric Brahminic Hindu pagans.

    I have said that Christianity is a distorted version of Judaism. Jews also believe so. I fuck your welcome even after death.

    a)Halal food: Jews also have kosher foods. Ethiopian Orthodox Church strictly prohibits pork to its adherents. Hindus don’t eat beef. Jains are mostly non-veg.

    b)Prayer breaks: your freedom of religion. If not, then you are violating it which you always squeak about.

    c)Ramadan special facilities: Jews and Christians have many holidays; BDSM cartoon Hinduism howls about Chaitanyadev (a shrewd, coward and betrayer under a Muslim ruler; under the guise of free religion, he spread free sex and rampant corruption), Vivekananda (Brahminist swine, supporter of terrorism), Ramakrishna Paramhamsadeva (pseudo humanist and a real thug), Gandhi (racist, thug, imperialist, and in secret negotiation with the British crown). In 2010/11, Hindus in Canada vehemently protested a school granting Muslims time break for mid-day prayers. When the pig bin Laden was killed, Hindus in USA was jeering Pakistan. But they did not condemn the Gujarat riots and when the motherfucker N. Modi was barred to enter USA, they did not speak a single word or condemn Modi.

    d)BDSM cartoon Hinduism has engulfed Mauritius, Fiji, Suriname, south Africa, Saudi Arabia, USA, UK, Australia, Canada—virtually every corner of the globe. In Southall, UK, it may seem that one is in India.

    e)World Bank, IMF, IDB, NASA, Microsoft, Google, IT industry of developed countries, many western governments— all poisoned by Indians and transferring money to India. The Indian government itself is gravely disturbed by Indian Hindus in India and around the globe transferring money to Swiss banks.

    f)All religions have theory of their superiority and their right to rule others. Christians have dominionism, Muslims have the global caliphate concept, BDSM cartoon Hinduism has the global Hindutva concept, the Chinese have the celestial kingdom theory, the Germans have the Aryan master race theory which very deeply influenced the motherfucker Brahminic Hindus. The BDSM cartoon Hinduism conducts its global poisoning through covert means, e.g. culture and faith which are not as explicit as Muslim methods but much deadlier. Why? Because when brainwashing is done by covert means inciting people’s sensuality and hunger for sex, that is given the look of art, the name of industry and commerce, the title and status of creativity.

    Trust a snake but not the Brahminic Hindus and their sympathisers.

    Come up again with your shit, I will enter brimstones and tungsten carbide rods into your holes.

  29. “Moses is the perfect to Jews” moses was a bastard.

    “I will enter brimstones and tungsten carbide rods into your holes” ha ha ha. lmfaoa, the last a is for “again”, can i trademark that in text lingo? that’s more like it.

  30. He’s got a tungsten fetish.

  31. “Religions are not manmade”

    Any evidence of that? Do you have an original manuscript in god’s handwriting?

  32. d-go,

    don’t be trusting no snakes, “Shaykh al-Islam (Ibn Taymiyah) said: The jinn may appear in human and animal form, so they may appear as snakes and scorpions etc”

  33. Mike,

    I gladly request you to do that. Moses (PBUH) was not that dirty thing. He was a Prophet. Go to any Jew and utter this thing in front of him/her; you will be in trouble. Because, Jews are more devoted to religion than Muslims.


    I must admit that I have no such evidence. But this is true for all religions and their followers. Let me tell you something: it is not my duty to prove to you and your kind whether God exists/not. I studied British law both in my home country and at London City University. But there is nore to your question’s answer.

    Say for debate that religions are man made. But those who wrote them allegedly, were they superhumans like Marvel comics that they could see events thousands of years later? If not, how could they describe? For example, Saint John in Revelation, New Testament says that there shall come a time when the authentic faith and its adherents both will be in danger. Now, what is the true faith, is subject to debate. But we do see religious persecution. He also said that treachery, corruption and shameless debauchery would engulf the whole world. Aren’t we seeing that?


    Not only tungsten, but also for titanium, chromium, limestone, brimstone, quicklime, iron, steel, carbon and other minerals. Because, prior to my present job, I used to work for a company who would deal in these goods. I still work for them on an honorary basis twice a week.

  34. Mike,

    Even if they appear as in their original form or say as dinosaurs, I have no problem in trusting them, but I will never trust a Brahminic Hindu.

  35. “they could see events thousands of years later?”

    So could nostradamus apparently. Make predictions wooly enough and make enough of them and some will be interpreted later as coming to pass by those desperate to believe.

    “He also said that treachery, corruption and shameless debauchery would engulf the whole world. Aren’t we seeing that?”

    We have always seen it, it’s like predicting some people will be drinking water in 1000 years time.

  36. dongo,

    no platinium? too bad, the price should be going up. south african unions closed one of the big mines down.

    i predict the rise of the salafist in north africa. i was thinking it would take 10 years. but our drought may speed it up.

  37. Jane,

    You will always be seeing those because very few animal can survive without water (you included). Otherwise, you won’t be able to speak ill of others.


    Probably due to their small size and considering market demands, my earlier employers did not go for platinum trade.

    The salafists were in N.Africa before you could imagine. Geographically, it is closer to the middle east. Therefore, it is not impossible to spread salafism in there. They were there. It is because of some unknown causes they did not show up. With conducive environment, they now are.

    Wait: could you see the Arab spring or the 9/11?

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