A taste of Islamic tolerance and coexistence in the Netherlands. From Newsday, with thanks to Susan:
ROTTERDAM – To Ronald Sorensen, the minarets rising above the historic Feyenoord soccer stadium in this port city symbolize everything that’s gone wrong with the Netherlands.
“It’s an insult to put it here,” snorts the 57-year-old leader of Leefbaar Rotterdam (Livable Rotterdam), now one of the largest parties in city government. “Feyenoord is like New York’s Yankee Stadium. It’s the temple to Dutch soccer. It’s the symbol of the Dutch working class.”
When completed, the mosque will be one of the largest in western Europe, with room for 1,500 worshipers and boasting minarets that will soar 164 feet into the air – higher than the adjacent stadium’s light banners. In Sorensen’s mind, that proves two things: that the Muslim community could not care less about Dutch sensibilities, and that the former city officials who approved the mosque deserved to be run out of office.
After his party swept into power on a wave of anti-immigration sentiment two years ago, “we said we’ll find another spot for you,” Sorensen said. “They said no. We asked them to lower the height of the minarets. They said no. It’s a symbol of their feelings toward us. They think we are inferior because we are not Muslims.”