The Park 51/NYC Islamic Center, or Ground Zero Mosque will quietly open the first floor of the site tomorrow:
Tomorrow Park51′s organizers will open a temporary space on the ground floor of the site, its first big event. The grand opening ceremony, timed to coincide with the United Nations’ International Day of Peace, includes a photography exhibit of children from 169 countries who now live in New York. Park51′s chief of staff Katerina Lucas says she hopes the exhibit will show “we are about inclusion, not exclusion.”
Opponents of the mosque location aren't impressed:
But even though the controversy may have quieted down, some of the project’s most staunch opposition has not. Pamela Geller, a blogger who has led the groundswell against the project told CNN she is appalled by the exhibit. “It is an obvious and cynical attempt to manipulate public opinion and divert attention away from the Islamic supremacist ties, shady financial dealings, and contradictory statements of the mosque organizers,” she said.
What is really behind the project — and why did it become such a lightning rod?
Victory mosque? Or just a tolerant, cultural center?