Murfreesboro Islamic Center hearing resumes

Rutherford County attorneys will ask Chancellor Robert Corlew III today to reject nearly all aspects of a lawsuit to stop the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro from building a mosque and community center. County Attorney Jim Cope and his firm’s partner Josh McCreary contend that 14 new plaintiffs who recently joined the three original plaintiffs have no standing in a September-filed lawsuit against the county.

The county was sued after the Regional Planning Commission approved the local Muslim congregation’s site plans last May for a 52,960-square-foot community center with a mosque on Veals Road off Bradyville Pike southeast of the city.

The case began with plaintiffs Kevin Fisher, Lisa Moore and Henry Golczynski seeking an injunction to stop the county from issuing more building permits. Their attorneys’ Joe Brandon Jr. of Murfreesboro and Tom Smith of Franklin argued the future ICM building would be a Shariah training center for jihad rather than a place of worship, but Corlew by November ruled against their request and stated that “Islam is in fact a religion.”

Brandon and Smith filed new motions Tuesday arguing that all 17 plaintiffs have standing when it comes to the proposed ICM building.

They contend that Fisher has standing because he’s an African American Christian who’d be discriminated against and subjugated as a second-class citizen under Shariah law and be denied his civil rights; Moore has standing because she’s a Jewish female who’s targeted in a Muslim call to kill Jews in “jihad” in support of Palestine and as a woman whose rights would be subordinate to those of men in Shariah law; and Golczynski, who lost a son killed while serving in the U.S. Marines in a combat in Fallujah, Iraq, by insurgents pursuing jihad as dictated by Shariah law.

The plaintiffs’ attorneys also stand by the other 14 plaintiffs who joined the case because they live near the proposed ICM building. The document goes on to say that all such Shariah teaching and practices will interfere with the plaintiffs’ use and enjoyment of their land and cause them extreme emotional distress, which discriminates against them and denies them their civil rights to equal protection.

Daily News Journal, 13 April 2011