An Islamic organization is urging its supporters to contact House Minority Leader John Boehner's office to object to his stance on the proposed Lower Manhattan mosque, calling his stance "un-American."
The Cincinnati chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said that Boehner's (R-Ohio) opposition of the planned Islamic center two blocks from the site of the 9/11 terrorist attacks is "offensive and deeply disturbing," Cincinnati.com reported.
“By stating that building a mosque to accommodate American Muslim worshipers a few blocks away from the site of the 9/11 attacks is somehow wrong Congressman Boehner is implying that American Muslims bear collective guilt for those attacks," the group said in a statement. "This is offensive and disturbing especially in a nation that places so much importance in the rule of law.
"To imply collective guilt on whole groups of people when one or a few members of that group commit crimes is entirely un-American," it added.
Republicans and Democrats have both been put on the defensive ever since the debate over the Islamic center became a national political firestorm.
Boehner drew the ire of CAIR for disapproving of President Obama's comments on the facility 10 days ago. Obama said that he backs the rights of the organizers to build the proposed Park 51 center, citing religious freedom. But he later clarified he was not commenting on the "wisdom" of its location.
The Ohio Republican responded that the president was out of touch with public opinion on the issue.
"The American people certainly don't support it," Boehner said. "The fact that someone has the right to do something doesn't necessarily make it the right thing to do. ... This is not an issue of law, whether religious freedom or local zoning. This is a basic issue of respect for a tragic moment in our history."