Murfreesboro Mosque Lawyer Says He'll Still Make His Case - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Murfreesboro Mosque Lawyer Says He'll Still Make His Case


MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Strong reaction from critics of plans for a new Islamic Center just outside of Murfreesboro, just one day after the U.S. Department of Justice confirmed that Islam is a religion.

Joe Brandon, the lawyer representing the plaintiffs who are suing to stop construction of the new mosque, held a news conference Tuesday afternoon.

Despite the statement from the Department of Justice, Brandon said he'll still make his case in court questioning the legitimacy of the Muslim faith.
Justice Dept. Enters Murfreesboro Mosque Controversy

That is at the heart of the lawsuit he filed challenging the permit allowing construction of the new Islamic Center in Rutherford County.

The property is already cleared at the site on Veals Road, with the construction phase set to begin soon.

On Monday, the assistant U.S. Attorney General made it clear Islam is considered a valid religion.

Brandon's lawsuit accuses county commissioners of not properly notifying the public about the proposed mosque. It also challenges the legitimacy of Islam, arguing that it is not a religion protected under the first amendment.

Brandon believes the Department of Justice is wrong, and said it's not the first time.

"Look at slavery and African Americans in America. The government said for years, and even owned slaves. The government said for years that African Americans were to be treated subordinate and they treated them that way. My point is, if because the federal government says something is so, does that means we all take it as so?" said Brandon.

Brandon plans to make that argument along with others challenging the mosque on Wednesday when the trial resumes in Rutherford County Chancery Court.

The U.S. attorney for civil rights said that unless a mistake was made in the permitting process, the mosque can, and should be, constructed at the site.

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