New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg defended on Tuesday a Florida pastor’s right to burn copies of the Quran during a public demonstration on the ninth anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
“In a strange way I’m here to defend his right to do that. I happen to think that it is distasteful. I don’t think he would like it if somebody burnt a book that in his religion he thinks is holy,” Mr. Bloomberg said during a news conference updating the public on the progress of rebuilding at the World Trade Center site.
“But the First Amendment protects everybody,” Mr. Bloomberg said, “and you can’t say that we’re going to apply the First Amendment to only those cases where we are in agreement.”