Opponents of the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro cemetery clashed with supporters and media outside of a hearing on Monday after their day in court went awry.
Longtime adversary of the ICM, Lou Ann Zelenik, appeared alongside other anti-Muslim activists in court to stop the construction of the cemetery that was approved in January. They claimed additional studies were needed to determine the impact it would have on traffic and environment, a common tactic used to halt the construction and expansion of mosques. However, events took an unexpected turn when a motion asking the judge to recuse himself from the case was granted.
Upset, Zelenik and her ilk were captured verbally berating reporters and others as they exited the courthouse. At one point Zelenik accused a Noor Tagouri, a student journalist who happened to be wearing a headscarf, of secretly recording the events.
“You’re really inciting work. It’s scary what you’re doing,” she can be seen telling Tagouri. Another man in Zelenik’s party was recorded speaking of Islam, saying, “it’s not a religion.”
In the video, Zelenick tells Tagouri, “We’re tired of having to be put at the back of the bus.”
To which Tagouri replies, “You’re at the back of the bus?”
Zelenick: “Yeah. We are.”
Attempting to block the ICM from adding a cemetery remains part of the ongoing efforts of Zelenik and her fellow activists to see the mosque closed down.