Muslim scientists and clerics have called for the adoption of Mecca time to replace GMT, arguing that the Saudi city is the true centre of the Earth.
A prominent cleric, Sheikh Youssef al-Qaradawy, said modern science had at last provided evidence that Mecca was the true centre of the Earth; proof, he said, of the greatness of the Muslim "qibla" - the Arabic word for the direction Muslims turn to when they pray.
The claim by Sheikh al-Qaradawy that Mecca is the "true centre of the Earth" is ignorant and stupid on so many levels.
For starters, the Earth, as everyone but a Flat Earther knows, is a sphere. That means that no place on the surface of the sphere can be its center. In the case of planet Earth, its true center is the core deep beneath the surface. Below is a cutout of the interior of the planet for illustrative purposes.
Note that the city of Mecca appears nowhere in the Earth's inner core in the illustration above, though some of us might wish that it could be relocated there!
Now, perhaps the Sheikh meant that Mecca occupies a place on the surface that could be considered centrally located. Well, if Mecca was smack dab on the equator, making the city equally distant from both the North and South Poles, it might help his case. But alas, as the map below reveals, Mecca does not lie on the equator. In fact, the Muslim holy city is about as far from the equator as Miami is from New York, and lies on approximately the same line of latitude as the Florida Keys.
But wait, the Muslim clerics and scientists have one more trick up their sleeves.
The BBC article reports that "One geologist argued that unlike other longitudes, Mecca's was in perfect alignment to magnetic north."
Gee, maybe he has a point there. Not!
You see, as reported in this BBC article, magnetic north tends to have a habit of shifting its position, and that "it could end up in Siberia within 50 years." So, even if Mecca did align perfectly with magnetic north, it would not stay that way for very long.
So, unless I am missing some crucial piece of information, I fail to see how Mecca, let alone any place on the surface of the Earth, can be considered to be the Earth's center.
If this is the best that contemporary Muslim scientific thought has to offer, I for one am not impressed.