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Collin County Residents Condemn Proposal For Muslim Cemetery

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FARMERSVILLE (CBSDFW.COM) – A proposal for a cemetery operated by the Islamic Association of Collin County was greeted with fear and condemnation in Collin County. People are in an uproar.

"We used to grow onions here. We sure enough don't want to be growing bodies," said Farmersville resident Mont Hendrick.

But if the undeveloped land off highway 380 becomes a Muslim cemetery, Hendrick and fellow resident Troy Gosnell will have a major problem with it.

"This is not a money maker for the city of Farmersville. It doesn't conform," said Gosnell.

It has generated opposition from people who don't want Muslims in the small town of 3000. Some residents even question how they bury their dead.

"When somebody dies they bury them at that time. They don't know whether they were shot, diseased or anything else. All they do is wrap them in a sheet from the grave and bury them," said Gosnell.

Concerns were raised that the Muslim burial practice could impact the town's drinking water.

"The bodies are generally above the water we get rain just like we did it's going to be in our drinking system," said Patricia Munroe.

But local Islamic leaders dispelled the concerns calling them offensive.

"They are fearful of what they don't understand and hopefully it's an opportunity for us to come together and learn a little bit more about each other and hopefully dispel some of those misconceptions," said Alia Salem with the Council on American Islamic Relations of Dallas.

Farmersville city council members didn't even discuss the cemetery Tuesday night since it isn't ready for a vote. But residents have organized and some are making threats to keep it from being approved. Some are threatening to dump pigs blood and put pigs heads on a post so Muslims won't buy the land.

No one involved in the proposed cemetery project spoke at Tuesday night's meeting.

The proposal still has to be approved by the planning and zoning commission before it's voted on by the city council.

(©2015 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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