Local mother of 9/11 victim supports mosque

Donna Marsh O'Connor

A Liverpool woman whose daughter was killed on 9/11 is speaking out in support of the planned mosque near ground zero.

Donna Marsh O'Connor was part of a coalition that gathered near Ground Zero in New York City Wednesday. The group is called New York Neighbors for American Values. The group includes civic and religious organizations including some families of the victims.

"We consider this to be the quintessential American argument," Marsh O'Connor said. "My own family came here to escape religious persecution. We can't live through the consequences of losing this debate. That's what America is, we open our arms, we open our boundaries, we open our borders and we do not say to Americans of any decent, no you can't practice freedom of religion here."

Marsh O'Connor says the good new about the debate is the number of people who have taken on the issue that "America cares about religious tolerance." She says 9/11 was "not an attack by the Muslim world" but rather "19 criminals".

Here's what she says about politicians using 9/11 in ads:

"You know damn well that any politician who wants to invoke 9/11 doesn't care about our sensitivities when he or she puts into their ads to be re-elected the towers falling, so why is this something you're all so suddenly worried about now?" Marsh O'Connor says.

Marsh O'Connor's daughter Vanessa Langer was 29 years old and pregnant when she was killed in the attack on the World Trade Center.Read more coverage of this story by clicking the links below.