Al-Jazeerah: Cross-Cultural Understanding
News, August 2011
Islamophobia in the US:
NJ Governor Christie Blasts Anti-Shari'a Law
August 13, 2011
U.S. Anti-Muslim Activists Vow to Press on After Norway
Anti-Sharia Movement Fuels Bigotry
Incitement: Constitution Written for Christians, Not Muslims
Iowa Mosque Leaders Calling Vandalism Hate Crime
CAIR-CAN Condemns Synagogue Vandalism
VERSE OF THE DAY: REMEMBER GOD - TOP
"Remember Me, and I will remember you."
The Holy Quran, 2:152
HADITH OF THE DAY: REMEMBER GOD'S GLORY
A person once said to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him): "The laws of Islam are too much for me, so tell me something that I can follow easily." The Prophet told him: "Let your tongue be always busy remembering (dhikr) God's beauty, majesty and glory."
Fiqh-us-Sunnah, Volume 4, Number 99
CAIR-NJ THANKS GOVERNOR FOR DEFENDING MUSLIM JUDGE - TOP
(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ, 8/5/2011) -- The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) today thanked Governor Chris Christie for his strong and rigorous defense of newly-confirmed Superior Court Judge Sohail Mohammed.
Prior to the recent swearing-in ceremony, Governor Christie publicly characterized his judicial nominee as an "extraordinary American," an "outstanding attorney," and an "outstanding human being," emphasizing the "integral role" Mohammed played in the post-September 11th period in building bridges between American Muslim community leaders and law enforcement authorities.
Governor Christie also highlighted Mohammed's "diligent and zealous" legal representation of individuals who were "inappropriately detained by FBI" following the tragic attacks on 9-11.
"We applaud Governor Christie for shining a spotlight on the tremendous contributions of Judge Sohail Mohammed," said CAIR-NJ Executive Director James Yee. "Governor Christie's praise highlights the commitment of American Muslims to building a better society. We hope the governor's comments will help stem the rising tide of Islamophobia in our society and help unify our nation."
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
CONTACT: CAIR-NJ Executive Director James Yee, 908-938-5990; E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
CHRIS CHRISTIE: 'THIS SHARIA LAW BUSINESS IS CRAP' - TOP Jonathan Martin, Politico, 8/5/11
More evidence for why so many Republicans pine for Chris Christie to run for president. In this case, he voices what many in the party's professional class actually believe but are scared to say out loud: that those in their base who fear Muslims are borderline crazy and are doing grave damage to the GOP brand. (More)
ACTION: THANK GOV. CHRISTIE FOR HIS DEFENSE OF RELIGIOUS TOLERANCE - TOP
ANTI-MUSLIM ACTIVISTS VOW TO PRESS ON AFTER NORWAY - TOP Nathan Guttman and Josh Nathan-Kazis, The Jewish Daily Forward, 8/5/2011
Leading anti-Muslim voices in the United States said that they have no plans to adjust their activities or rhetoric, despite claims that their writing and political outlook provided sustenance for the alleged perpetrator of the terror attacks in and around Oslo.
Anders Breivik, who was detained near the Norwegian capital on an island where at least 68 people were murdered, has admitted to those killings and to the related bombing in downtown Oslo in which another eight people died, though he has pleaded not guilty to any charges. A lengthy manifesto written by Breivik that surfaced soon after the July 22 attacks evinced deep opposition to Muslim immigration to Europe and to European politicians who embrace multiculturalism.
The manifesto echoed talking points of the burgeoning anti-Islamic movement in the United States, which experienced a watershed during the 2010 debate over the Islamic center proposed for near Manhattan's Ground Zero. Breivik cited a number of prominent American anti-Islamic writers and bloggers.
But despite signs that the alleged terrorist drew inspiration from the writings of key American anti-Muslim figures, prominent leaders in the movement say they see no connection between their work and Breivik's actions. (More)
ANTI-SHARIA MOVEMENT FUELS BIGOTRY - TOP Editorial, The Baltimore Sun, 8/5/2011
Nearly a decade after the events of 9/11, the backlash against Islamic Americans shows signs of worsening. Not even the death of Osama bin Laden earlier this year has had much impact on the growing anxiety of those who can't seem to distinguish between mainstream practitioners of a religion and the relatively small number of extremists who commit acts of terror in its name.
This is not a matter of political correctness. Americans are justified in their concerns over violent religious fundamentalists. It would be foolish for them not to be. But there has clearly been an organized effort in this country to raise public alarm over Sharia, the religious code the informs Muslim belief and behavior, and that development is something altogether different and distressing.
This anti-Sharia movement would have Americans believe that the Islamic Code holds all Muslims hostage and calls their basic loyalties into question. The ugly opposition to the Islamic center near ground zero in New York is but one example of how misinformation and false assumptions can be whipped up into frenzy. (More)
VIDEO: SEATTLE MUSLIM SAYS HE LOST JOB OVER BEARD (CAIR) - TOP Allen Schauffler, King 5 News, 8/4/2011
A Seattle-area Muslim is suing his former employer, claiming he was fired as a security guard for refusing to shave his beard, which he wears for religious reasons.
Abdulkadir Omar filed his federal lawsuit July 15 in Seattle. He spoke publicly about it Thursday along with representatives from the Seattle chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. Omar, however, did not want his face shown in entirety.
Omar says that in November 2009, a supervisor at American Patriot Security told him he had to shave his beard. Omar responded that his beard is part of his religious beliefs and refused. He was suspended the following spring.
Omar filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which found that Omar was wrongfully terminated. The Yemeni-born man, now an American citizen, says he grew up believing in certain civil rights and he feels those rights have been violated. He's asking for changes at the company and for punitive damages for Omar. (Watch the video.)
CAIR-WA: MUSLIM SUES AFTER BEING FIRED BECAUSE OF BEARD - TOP Jessie Van Berkel, The Seattle Times, 8/4/2011
A Muslim man from SeaTac who claims he was fired from his job as a security guard after refusing to shave his beard has filed a federal lawsuit against his former employer.
Abdulkadir Omar, 22, began working in Kent for California-based American Patriot Security in May 2009. He said no one told him when he was hired that he would have to shave his beard, which he keeps closely trimmed and said is part of his Islamic faith.
But six months later a supervisor told Omar he was required to shave, according to a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Seattle last month against American Patriot. The lawsuit seeks compensation for 65 hours Omar said he worked and wasn't paid, as well as emotional and general damages.
The company declined to comment for this story. ...
He contacted the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a national Muslim advocacy organization. The Northwest chapter of the council receives one or two calls a month from people who have a similar problem with an employer, said Jennifer Gist, a coordinator for the Seattle Chapter of the council. (More)
CAIR-MI: ISLAMIC SCHOOL REZONING REJECTED BY PLANNING COMMISSION - TOP Tom Perkins, AnnArbor.com, 8/5/2011
A split Pittsfield Township Planning Commission rejected a rezoning request by a group hoping to build an Islamic school in the township.
In a 3-2 vote, the board voted to approve a motion to recommend that the Pittsfield Township Board of Trustees reject the zoning request by the Michigan Islamic Academy. The Board of Trustees has final authority and will vote on the issue at an upcoming meeting.
The biggest issue has been traffic concerns, but officials involved with the school say two separate traffic studies have found there would be little impact on traffic. (More)
IOWA MOSQUE LEADERS CALLING VANDALISM HATE CRIME - TOP KWQC News (Quad Cities), 8/4/2011
A local mosque is vandalized and now the people who run it are calling it a hate crime.
Leaders at the Islamic Society of Clinton County said rocks were thrown through windows, causing hundreds of dollars worth of damage.
Investigators are looking into an act of vandalism. They said more than a dozen rocks were thrown through the front door windows.
There are still marks leftover on the metal doors. The rest of the mess had been cleaned up as of Thursday, August 4th. Leaders said this happened around July 22nd, but police said they don't have any leads. The glass on the front door was shattered and rocks were left behind.
Those who run the center at 1500 2nd Avenue South in Clinton said they're worried something like this will happen again. (More)
CAIR-CAN CONDEMNS SYNAGOGUE VANDALISM - TOP The Canadian Press, 8/5/11
TORONTO — Toronto police are reviewing surveillance video after a synagogue was spray-painted with anti-Semitic graffiti.
The Robbins Hebrew Academy, which is attached to the Tikvah Synagogue, was vandalized late Thursday afternoon.
A red swastika and the words "Islam will rule" were spray-painted near the school entrance. ...
The Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations condemned the incident, and called on police to bring those responsible to justice.
"CAIR-CAN stands firmly with all Canadians in denouncing this act of hate and intimidation," the group said. (More)
CAIR-HOUSTON: INTERFAITH GROUPS PROTEST TEXAS GOV. RICK PERRY'S PRAYER RALLY - TOP CBN News, 8/5/11
As thousands prepare to attend Texas Gov. Rick Perry's prayer rally, The Response, opponents are holding an interfaith service in Houston Friday night.
Although they haven't found evidence, they've accused Perry of using tax dollars to plan the event and say he's blurring the line between church and state.
Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, warned the governor "don't mess with the Constitution."
"Don't believe that just because you're the governor you have something in your job description that says you're the pastor of everyone from San Antonio to Dallas," he said.
Members of Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) were also present at Friday's protest.
"If it had been a Muslim governor, head of state, and he elected to have a Muslim prayer and opposed to bringing other people in, that would have been a big issue," Mustafa Carroll of the Dallas Fort Worth Chapter of CAIR said. (More)
INCITEMENT WATCH: RESIDENTS RIGHT TO OBJECT TO BUILDING OF MOSQUE - TOP Letter to the Editor, Indianapolis Star, 8/5/2011
I agree with Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain in regard to his siding with people in Tennessee who do not want a Muslim mosque built in their town.
Our judges seem to forget that our Constitution was written by Christians for Christians, not Muslims. If our forefathers had foreseen the influx of Muslims into this country, their writings would have been quite a bit different. By that I mean they would have protected the Christian majority against the anti-Christian minority.
Jim Wheatley, Greenwood, IN (More)
SAC CONDEMNS ASSAULT ON HAMA, URGES INTENSIFIED PRESSURE ON ASSAD REGIME - TOP
(Chicago, IL, 8/5/11) - A Syrian American advocacy organization today condemned the multi-day assault by the forces of Bashar Assad against the people of Hama and urged increased international pressure on the Syrian dictator to end the use of force against nonviolent protesters.
The Syrian American Council (SAC) also decried the silence of leaders of other Arab and Muslim-majority countries and criticized Russia and China for their tacit support of the Syrian regime and its crimes against humanity.
In a statement, SAC's president Talal Sunbulli said: "The news from Hama is deeply troubling, with reports of mass killings and widespread suffering. In the fifth day of shelling and sniper fire, the Assad regime has now cut off water and electricity to the city." (More)
CAIR-MI Asks FBI to Probe Threat Against Muslim Driver Man allegedly shouts racial slurs, points handgun at woman wearing Islamic scarf
(SOUTHFIELD, MI, 8/7/11) --
The Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MI) today called on the FBI to investigate an alleged bias-motivated threat against a Muslim woman driver this morning in Ann Arbor.
The 21-year-old Muslim woman, who is of Palestinian heritage and wears and Islamic head scarf (hijab), reported to CAIR-MI that a white male driving a truck pulled up to her vehicle while she was stopped at a red light and began honking his horn. According to the Muslim driver, the alleged assailant then shouted racial slurs such as "You don't belong here," "Your people need to be killed," and "You're a terrorist." She also reported that the alleged assailant swerved his vehicle toward hers and pointed a handgun at her.
After the assailant reportedly saw the victim using her cell phone to call 911, he sped off. The victim provided the Ann Arbor Police Department with the alleged assailant's license plate number. (It is not clear in which state the vehicle is registered.)
A CAIR-MI representative has spoken with the FBI to request a federal investigation.
"Because of the reported racial slurs and physical threat, we urge local, state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate this incident as a hate crime," said CAIR-MI Executive Director Dawud Walid. "The FBI's involvement would send the message that our nation will not tolerate the targeting of religious minorities."
CAIR's Iowa chapter recently called on the FBI to investigate vandalism at a mosque in that state as a possible hate crime. The Muslim civil rights group also called on the FBI to probe a Tennessee road rage incident in which a Muslim mother and son were allegedly targeted with death threats and anti-Muslim slurs by a knife-wielding driver.
Islamic institutions and members of the American Muslim community are being asked to review security procedures using advice contained in CAIR's "Muslim Community Safety Kit."
SEE: CAIR Muslim Community Safety Kit CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
CAIR-MI Executive Director Dawud Walid, 248-842-1418, E-mail: email@example.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, E-Mail: email@example.com
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