This morning, Governor Paterson spoke on WABC Radio about the only thing that matters: The proposed mosque and community center situated at 45-47 Park Place, two blocks from the World Trade Center. According to NY1, "He... said local politicians are thinking of the site 'clinically,' reacting to its legality and not the human aspects, and not considering the emotional dynamic: "Whatever reasons people may have to oppose this -- there are always bigoted people who oppose things. But leaving them out there is a sizable population that really is reacting just to the whole spectacle of this situation."
Paterson also said that he had not met with the developers about his suggestion to find another site for the mosque (would Paterson make sure the mosque is far enough for Newt Gingrich's approval?). The developers behind the Park 51 project have said, so far, that they are not backing down.
This morning, dueling rallies—one against the mosque and the other a counter-protest—were held outside the former Burlington Coat Factory building. Retired firefighter Jim Riches, whose son died at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, told NY1, "Muslims were dancing in the street celebrating the murder of my son that day, we still believe in religious freedom but it should be further away, show sensitivity for the families," while a Brooklyn plumber who spoke to the AP said that the people behind Park 51 are the same as the ones who "took down the twin towers." The supporters of the project chanted, "Muslims are welcome here. We say no to racist fear."