Herman Cain, a businessman seeking the Republican nod in the 2012 Presidential race, spoke out against a planned mosque Sunday. The CEO-turned-candidate said communities “have the right” to ban mosques, and to do so would not be “discriminating based upon (Muslims’) religion.”
In an interview with Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday, Cain spoke about the planned construction of a mosque in Murfreesboro, Tenn. Critics have said the group building the mosque is trying to impose Sharia law in the United States.
“Chris, let’s go back to the fundamental issue that the people are basically saying that they are objecting to. They are objecting to the fact that Islam is both religion and (a) set of laws, Sharia law. That’s the difference between any one of our other traditional religions where it’s just about religious purposes,” Cain said in the interview.
When Wallace asked Cain whether a community could ban a mosque, Cain said: “Yes, they have the right to do that. That’s not discriminating based upon religion — against that particular religion. There is an aspect of them building that mosque that doesn’t get talked about. And the people in the community know what is it and they are talking about it.”
Wallace later asked whether Cain, as someone who had faced racial prejudice, was being discriminatory in being “willing to restrict people because of their religion.”
“I’m willing to take a harder look at people that might be terrorists. That’s what I’m saying. Look, I know that that there’s a peaceful group of Muslims in this country. God bless them and they are (free) to worship. I have no problem with that,” Cain said. “I have never discriminated against anybody because of their religion, their sex, or origin, or anything like that. I’m simply saying I owe it to the American people to be cautious because terrorists are trying to kill us. And so, yes, I’m going to err on the side of caution, rather than on the side of carelessness.”