by Patrick Appel
Constitutional rights are not requirements. We do not all have to carry guns just because the Second Amendment says we are allowed to. Just as we all have the right to build a mosque near Ground Zero, we also all have the right not to build one. We even have a First Amendment right to attempt to persuade other people to give up the exercise of some constitutional right.
Imam Rauf and his followers, however, are not likely to be persuaded by the argument that, even though they had no connection whatever to the events of 9/11, their very presence near Ground Zero is upsetting to the sensitivities of 9/11 survivors and families. It is like telling blacks or Jews that they have every right to move into the neighborhood, but wouldn't they really be happier in some other neighborhood, not too far away, where the neighbors' sensistivities won't be offended? And--as Charles mentioned in both columns and obviously feels is important--the governor will even help you find one. That's how badly people don't want you around.