August 31st, 2010
04:35 PM ET

A Mormon with a memory: Hatch backs 'Ground Zero Mosque'

Stephen Prothero
Special to CNN

Editor's Note: Stephen Prothero, a Boston University religion scholar and author of "God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World," is a regular CNN Belief Blog contributor.

In an interview on Monday with Fox13now in Salt Lake City, Utah Senator Orrin Hatch said he would be “the first to stand up” for the rights of Muslims to build an Islamic community center and mosque near ground zero. Well, he’s not exactly the first, but I’ll take it.

A few days ago I lamented the fact that so many prominent Mormons, including Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid and Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, had come out against the mosque.

As almost every Mormon knows, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have been on the receiving end of more than their fair share of religious discrimination, including discrimination of the “don’t build it here” kind.

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