So this issue has once again been brought to my attention. Here is a short, probably not-so-sweet, but to the point summary of my position.
I do think it is a bit insensitive of Cordoba to build this so close, especially when they've seen the reaction. However, there are some facts that cannot be disputed. They bought the property, hence they have the right to do whatever they want with it- property rights. They have a religion, and are free to practice it- freedom of religion. They have a right to worship together- freedom of association.
However, I do think one thing needs to be remembered- Cordoba and Imam Rauf did not kill those 3,000 on 9/11. The guys who killed those 3,000 are dead. It's useless to whine about them now. It's over. Can't cry over spilled milk. Yes, what happened was terrible. I condole with the families who lost loved ones- both Muslim and Christian and athiest, and whatever other belief systems may have been represented, because I'm sure the families of those 19 men miss them just as much.
But we also can't forget what has risen out of this. It's killed hundreds of thousands of civilians all over the world. It's divided Americans even more starkly along lines of left and right. It's made Americans so gun-shy they freak over the slightest evidence of a possible terror attack- while the rest of the world laughs at our naive belief that we are the only country that has ever been attacked by a terrorist. We lambast a whole race of people for the actions of 19 men. 19 men attacked us. There are roughly 1.5 billion Muslims on the globe, and the number is rising. You do the math. 19 is such a tiny percentage, I'm pretty sure you'd have to put it in decimals. Even if you put in the couple hundred estimated insurgents involved in al Qaeda, the Taliban, and like groups (and that membership is growing too...I wonder why?), you've still got a small, small percentage. That's like saying that, out of the couple billion Christians in the globe, all of them should be treated with as much disdain as we all treat Westboro Baptist Church. That doesn't make sense, and nor does ostracizing and behaving with such venom towards an entire sect of people.
To summarize- yes, I feel for the families of the 9/11 victims. I do think Cordoba should look into moving this community center/mosque somewhere else. But in the meantime- Constitutionally, they can do whatever they want with the property. And I think, that if this does begin to happen, and happens, we should let it be. Move past it. We're all adults. Osama bin Laden would love nothing more than for us all to jump on Muslims and demand they shut down their mosques. Do you know how much of a PR field-day that would be for him? His recruiting levels would go up immediately! The evil Americans, denying what they profess to believe in, and repressing the poor, beleaguered Muslims. Yes, we may look at that and think that he's misrepresenting the situation...but we know about the media, and we know that's exactly what bin Laden and his ilk will say.
Let's not give him the satisfaction.