New Jersey Get’s NASTY Surprise After Blocking Building Of New Mosque

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The township of Bernards in New Jersey is located about an hour west of New York City.  It’s known for its tree-lined streets and multi-million dollar homes with a population of about 27,000 people. And like many other towns across America, it seems Islam has set its sites on Bernards as a place to build a new mosque. Several residents stated “NO WAY!” and the town has been riddled in controversy ever since.

This whole debacle started in 2011 when the city planning board took up a proposal for a 4,250-square-foot mosque in a residential neighborhood known as Liberty Corner. The Islamic Society of Basking Ridge has filed a federal civil rights suit accusing members of the board of religious discrimination for rejecting the project. 33 residents that have spoken out about the project at dozens of public meetings have been subpoenaed in an effort to by the plaintiffs in the case to prove that the decision to not build the mosque was one that was made based on bigotry.

“This is a land use matter. It never was about religion,” current Bernards Mayor Carol Bianchi told FoxNews.com. “Anyone who takes the time to review the transcripts or knows our Planning Board members would draw this conclusion quickly.”

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The Planning Board and many residents say they were concerned about traffic and other zoning issues, but the lawsuit accuses town officials of violating the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA), which gives religious institutions flexibility when it comes to zoning law restrictions on property use. The U.S. Department of Justice is separately investigating the case.  The Islamic group has garnered the support of several advocacy groups including the ACLU creating a witch hunt.  It seems that they are going to accuse anyone and everyone of bigotry and if they scream loud enough to the right people these folks are going to get their way much as they did with the Tennessee mosque built in Murfreesboro, Tennessee that went through a similar legal battle. It seems that if one is Muslim, the words “No” does not apply to you and you cannot possibly be told “No” unless it is meant in some sort of bigoted way. They  have targeted local residents in such a way as to make them afraid to speak up.

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According to Fox News

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The lawsuit lists examples of anti-Muslim bias, including vandalism of an ISBR mailbox and comments posted on social media. It also accused the citizens’ group of holding a meeting where those preparing to speak out were told, “Please remember, do not make any comments on the religion or Islamic mosque itself. If we do so, we will lose the battle.”

Based on those allegations, the ISBR’s lawyers subpoenaed the residents as well as eight current and former Planning Board members. One resident who was subpoenaed told FoxNews.com attorneys for ISBR seemed to be seeking evidence of a conspiracy. The resident, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the meeting was unnerving.

“I spoke out once, at one meeting,” the resident said. “I was tangentially involved. I clearly felt like it was a fishing expedition, that they were looking to find anything to support their case.”

“For me, this has a chilling effect,” the resident added. “It was scary. They came to my home in the middle of the night to serve me the papers. I feel like I will never speak up in a public forum again.”

Bianchi blasted the tactics of ISBR and its lawyers from the prominent New York firm Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler.

“These tactics are un-American and violate First Amendment rights,” Bianchi said. “They are an attempt to bully and harass the community and township into settling the matter on plaintiffs’ terms without regard to proper land use concerns, especially safety.”

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