Sixteen years after 2 acres near Roxbury Crossing were designated for use as a mosque, the area's growing Muslim community has quietly begun using the building for regular worship...
The mosque has been controversial for years. A conservative Israel-advocacy organization called the David Project asserted that some of the mosque's founding leaders had links to terrorism. In 2005, the Islamic Society filed a lawsuit against the David Project and two media outlets, saying that those allegations were defamatory, but dropped the suit last year after another suit, challenging the mosque's construction, was also dropped.
Although mosque construction has proved controversial in many places around the country, it has been particularly contentious in Boston, according to a national watchdog group.
"Usually we find there's some level of resistance, but the situation in your area was unique in its level of vitriol and viciousness," said Ibrahim Hooper, spokesman for the Washington, D.C.-based Council on American-Islamic Relations. "It was atypical in the level of controversy that was generated by those who were opposed to the mosque, and I don't mean legitimate controversy, I mean fake controversy. There's an effort by some minority of people in any community who seek to marginalize Muslims and demonize Islam, and that's what we saw in this case." (MORE)