It appears that the Muslim congregation building the mosque and community center in Murfreesboro, Tennessee had received a series of threats before the arson attacks over the weekend. Our Rachel Slajda spoke to one member of the center’s planning committee, Saleh Sbenaty, a local college professor.
Sbenaty expressed shock over the atmosphere in a town he’s lived in for 30 years. For most of that time, he said, the community has been extremely supportive and welcoming. Even after Sept. 11, 2001, he said, neighbors came up to him and said, “Please do not feel scared. We know your religion has nothing to do with this.”
“It’s a wide shift, and a shock,” he told TPM. “It’s just mind-boggling.”