Update: Discussion of Marietta Board of Zoning's Denial of Minaret Plans

December 24, 2002

Source: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution


On December 24, 2002 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that "more than 100 of Amjad Taufique neighbors... protest[ed] the plans before the Marietta [GA] Board of Zoning Appeals at its Dec. 16 meeting. The mosque needed the board's approval to build the minaret, which is 35 feet higher than city rules allow... when a man approached him and rudely suggested the mosque cut its losses and build elsewhere, he was not sure what to say... 'That's when I felt, is this about the height of the minaret, or is it something else,' Taufique said. 'You pray to God that it is nothing but the height.'... 'I'd like to sit down with this neighbor and talk with him,' Taufique said. 'Come visit and be comfortable and know that they are safe in our presence. They won't have to fear anything, and they will be comfortable working with us to better our community.'... A few residents and a board member said they believe the denial had more to do with religion than zoning. But neighbors opposing the exception disagree anti-Muslim sentiment ever played into their concerns. The matter was simply a zoning one, they said."