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http://headlines.agapepress.org/archive/4/222004c.asp

(AgapePress) - A Michigan woman says as a Christian, she is offended that the city council in her small community is poised to approve an ordinance that would allow local mosques to broadcast calls for prayer over loudspeakers.

The City Council of Hamtramck, Michigan, has given preliminary approval to a mosque's plans to send out the Muslim call to prayer on loudspeakers. The Bangladeshi al-Islah mosque wants to air the Arabic call to prayer via loudspeakers five times a day, but has agreed not to air them between 10:00 at night and 6:00 in the morning.

The Detroit suburb's city council is expected to give its final approval at its April 27 meeting; if approved, the ordinance would take effect on May 26.

Some Muslims say the call to prayer is the equivalent of church bells. But opponents argue that church bells have no religious significance and that allowing the Arabic call, which lasts less than two minutes, unfairly elevates Islam above other religions.

Some Christian residents, like Joanne Golen, resent the city allowing Muslims to impose their religion on everybody else. Golen feels her rights are being violated.

"Allah is not my god -- my God is Jesus Christ, who is the Son of God," she says. "And I feel it's against my constitutional rights to have to hear this at sunrise, four more times at sunset, which may be ten o'clock, blaring in my ears, telling me about their god."

Golen considers it offensive for her and other Christians to have to hear chants from a mosque. "I do not impose Jesus on them because He's quiet," the Hamtramck resident says. "Jesus calls in a quiet, gentle voice -- He doesn't have to blare over a PA system to call His followers.

"We know when it's time to go to church; we pray constantly -- we don't need a call to prayer. My life is a prayer, and I resent this."

Golen says if the situation was reversed and a local Christian church asked permission to broadcast over a loudspeaker, they would be turned down immediately. She and her husband says they plan to carry on the fight to head off the ordinance.

Estimates are that about one-third of the population in Hamtramck is Muslim. The Chicago Tribune says that while people of Polish descent control the town's politics, the growth -- and perhaps the future -- of Hamtramck is driven by Muslims.
what's your take on this?

I, personally, am very sensitive to noise pollution, so I wouldn't want unnecessary noise to be blasted on speakers near my house, at regular intervals. why can't those who want to hear special-interest audio material do what the rest of us do - tune into a radio or something! use cellphones to call people to pray. use IP multicast ;). windows messenger ;) ;) use SOMETHING more civilized than screaming thru the air at 'ungodly' hours. I really see no need, in this modern world, to have to audibly annoy people against their will. religious freedom doesn't give you the right to shout your stuff over loudspeakers in public.

so, for a change, I'll side with the christian lady on this [shock!]
 

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they won't be doing it at 'ungodly' hours:

but has agreed not to air them between 10:00 at night and 6:00 in the morning.
I'm not too fond of the idea myself, but all I can think of is hourly christian church bells when I read this.
 

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Darter said:
they won't be doing it at 'ungodly' hours:

but has agreed not to air them between 10:00 at night and 6:00 in the morning.
I'm not too fond of the idea myself, but all I can think of is hourly christian church bells when I read this.
right. those need to go, also.

if christians and moslems can't tell time on their little watchies, then they have bigger issues than I had suspected..
 

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They should broadcast it over a radio station that way everyone who wants to hear it can just have a radio in their car, or house devoted to this station and they will hear it when they send it out...
 

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I recently travelled to Malaysia where this is a common occurance. Right across the freeway from the hotel where I stayed was a mosque. Every night I went to dinner, the call to prayer was happening. For me, it was interesting, having not experienced that before. It wasn't a big deal IMO. They're talking about one mosque, correct. But the radio station idea is a great one IMO. That sounds like a solution. But is it against the traditions of the Muslims?

I should add that I feel that people should be allowed to practice their religion even if it doesn't agree with my beliefs. Their is nothing offensive about the call to prayer except for the noise pollution. It can be loud, but it is only a few minutes long. It didn't distract me or hinder my conversation during my outdoor meals. :)

Sounds to me like the town is partially afraid of change.

-Mark
 

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Noise ordinances should address this and restrict anything that is considered too loud and intrusive. Those should be applied to church bells as well as this call to worship.
 

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The bells that toll in churches are more like your grandfather clock signaling the hour. DUH! it's nothing more than that.

maybe us christians should start broadcasting our prayers over the PA as well
 

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veedubyo said:
maybe us christians should start broadcasting our prayers over the PA as well
"I do not impose Jesus on them because He's quiet," "Jesus calls in a quiet, gentle voice -- He doesn't have to blare over a PA system to call His followers.
:p Too funny. I had to repeat it.
 

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Macabre said:
"my God is Jesus Christ, who is the Son of God"

That makes my brain hurt
MY God is WAY better than YOUR God.

The only thing that separates Evangelicals from the Taliban are newer SUVs.
 

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Sharky said:
Macabre said:
"my God is Jesus Christ, who is the Son of God"

That makes my brain hurt
MY God is WAY better than YOUR God.

The only thing that separates Evangelicals from the Taliban are newer SUVs.
LMAO

Im use to bells...from Europe. Its more of a "reminder about the top of the hour" rather then a religious thing IMO....but everyone is different....

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Im use to bells...from Europe. Its more of a "reminder about the top of the hour" rather then a religious thing IMO
Didn't I just say this? Is there an echo in the house?

The Catholic churches should start announcing their Bingo games on the PA
!B 34!

BINGO!!!
 

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Hmmmm......what did they do 100's of years ago without PA systems? Not pray? I think Islam will be fine without the announcements.
 

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I think their city noise ordanances are probably pretty clear on the matter, and I seriously doubt that a request from a Christian church would be denied as the interviewee claims. They'd be in much worse shape if the city council started dictating what types of noise could be allowed outside the laws of their jurisdiction. If the people want to stop it, let them petition for a ballot measure to change the noise laws. Ahh, America.
 

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LoneStarPoke said:
They should broadcast it over a radio station that way everyone who wants to hear it can just have a radio in their car, or house devoted to this station and they will hear it when they send it out...
BRILLIANT! Now that's using your noggin! :thumbup:

By the way, it says they won't broadcast between 10pm and 6am. Well what if 6am is too early for some people? And what about those that work 2nd and 3rd shifts?!? It is just too inconvenient for this to go through.
 

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I'm all for enforcing noise ordinances.

The lady in the original article talks about her constitutional rights. Some christians often point out that the constitution & bill of rights allow for "freedom OF religion" not "freedom FROM religion", whenever there is a threat of taking god out of the pledge of allegiance or eliminating prayer from HS football games.

Well we can't have it both ways. Muslims have as much freedom of religion as christians and everybody else here. If they don't violate a noise ordinance, they can do what they want.

Edit: edited for spelling and clarity.
 

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It would get really interesting if you could hear the church bells and prayer calls inside a courtroom or a voting location or other government office... now you're interfering in a manner similar to the 10-commandments statue in that courthouse.
 
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