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Mosque near ground zero controversy simmers ... with media help

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Seth Wenig/AP/file

(Read caption) People participate in a rally against a proposed Islamic center and mosque near ground zero in New York in this Aug. 22 file photo.

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The Islamic community center near the World Trade Center, the mosque at Ground Zero – whatever you call it, it isn't fading to black any time soon.

  • A New York Times poll that came out Friday shows two-thirds of New Yorkers believe the building should relocate.
  • Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert demonstrated (albeit in a rebroadcast) how he himself could be labeled a terrorist with enough triangulations of connections between himself and others.
  • An online op-ed piece by Jason Ditz news director of antiwar.com is attracting a shower of impassioned response.
  • And during the week of Aug. 23-27, almost a quarter (23 percent) of the news links on blogs were about the mosque, making it the No. 1 subject, according to the New Media Index from the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism.

In other words, this is not going away because politicians and even talk show hosts have an interest in fanning the flame. The facts are taking a back seat to the spotlight, notes Jim Broussard, professor of history at Lebanon Valley College in Annville, Pa.

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