Islamophobia & Civil Freedoms

  • Anti-Muslim Backlash sounds so familiar to Japanese-Americans

    Source: The Record. Those who do stand with Muslim-Americans are Japanese-Americans, in particular the Florin Japanese American Citizens League. “Back in 1991 during the Gulf War, our chapter president at the time, Carol Hisatomi, was noticing all the backlash developing against Arabs and Muslims and said we should reach out to the community,” said Andy Noguchi, Florin’s current co-president. “A few of us went (to a meeting) and heard about people blaming Americans for the war in the Middle East, and we know that’s not right.”

  • Among Republicans, polls show, fear of Islam is always on ‘high simmer’

    Source: The Washington Post. Rather than dissipate after 9/11 and the eventual killing of Osama bin Laden, the deeper range of fears about Muslim dangers to the United States have only proliferated in blogs, books, videos and speeches among true believers. Now those fears are bursting to the forefront of the GOP presidential contest, and polls show they have become commonplace among Republican voters.

  • Terrifying new poll: Nearly 1 in 3 Iowa Republicans thinks Islam should be illegal

    Source: Salon. Donald Trump has made it a habit to never apologize for any of his bluster and offensive rhetoric on the campaign trail (most recently, refusing to be held responsible for not correcting a supporter who incorrectly presumed President Obama is a Muslim), while runner-up Republican favorite Ben Carson has inartfully defended his admission that he’d never support a Muslim for president, despite criticism from other Republican candidates. But it appears as though both conservative newbies are basing their resistance against widespread backlash on a targeted understanding of the extreme right-wing Iowa electorate they are catering to, according to a new poll that shows that 30 percent of Republican voters in the Hawkeye State think Islam should be outlawed altogether.

  • American Muslims fear a new wave of Islamophobia

    Source: Reuters. Muslim Americans responded with a mix of frustration, exasperation and anger to what many see as a growing wave of Islamophobia fueled by two of the Republican Party’s most popular presidential candidates, Donald Trump and Ben Carson. At the Islamic Institute of Orange County, which houses a mosque and a school in Anaheim, in southern California, tensions were already mounting since a group of white men screamed at mothers and children arriving at the center on this year’s anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, calling them cowards who did not belong in America. Many of the country’s 2.8 million Muslims say such tensions could become uglier during a presidential race that they fear is already tapping a vein of anger and bigotry.

  • Anti-Muslim protests spoil the first day of school for kindergartners In Houston

    Source: Think Progress. A group of adult protesters likely spoiled the first day of class for 132 knee-high pre-kindergarten and kindergarten students at Texas’ Houston Independent School District (HISD) who were on their way to a new Arabic immersion program at their school.On Monday morning, about 30 adult protesters spread out around the school fence holding signs and waving American and Israeli flags.This is the first semester at HISD’s Arabic Immersion Magnet School (or AIMS), a program that offers students the opportunity to spend half their day in classes taught in Arabic and half taught in English. The program welcomes children from 40 different Houston-area zipcodes, HISD Superintendent Terry Grier said. Behind Spanish, Arabic is the second most common foreign language spoken at home among people living in the Houston Independent School District. HISD opened a Mandarin immersion program in 2012 without any issues and has a Spanish dual language program that expanded from 31 to 52 campuses this year.

  • Scott Walker’s campaign lets stand ‘handful of reasonable’ Muslims remark

    Source: Wisconsin State Journal. For a second day, Gov. Scott Walker’s campaign let stand remarks by the Republican presidential hopeful that suggest he believes the vast majority of Muslims are extremists. While the governor’s campaign sought to clarify the remarks he made in Derry, New Hampshire, in a statement Friday, a campaign spokeswoman declined or didn’t respond to three requests by the Wisconsin State Journal on Friday and Saturday to explain whether Walker merely misspoke when he said there are few “reasonable, moderate followers of Islam.”

  • ‘Enlightened’ USA: FBI warns of right wing militia attacks against Muslims

    Source: Middle East Eye. The FBI has noted an increase in surveillance of mosques and avocation of violence against Muslims via armed militia groups over the course of the past two years. Chillingly, the FBI notes that a militia group in Mississippi “discussed kidnapping and beheading a Muslim and posting video of the attack to the Internet,” while another “posted calls over social media to kill Muslims attending worship services”. Significantly, the FBI contends that it is anti-Muslim rhetoric and anti-Muslim conspiracy theories disseminated by “self-appointed watchdogs of Islamic extremism, Internet bloggers, and some news media” that have fuelled these right wing militias into becoming what the FBI now considers a serious threat.

  • Disgraced former FBI agent John Guandolo providing anti-Muslim law enforcement training this week in Colorado

    Source: SPLC. Former FBI agent John Guandolo is planning to be in Denver, Colo., this week for three training sessions for law enforcement, legislators, clergy and members of the general public –– all guaranteed to understand the skills to “combat” the jihadi threat “at the local level.” But if Guandolo’s previous comments on Islam and strong ties to anti-Muslim groups are any indication, the trainings are sure to be steeped in conjured worries and fear mongering anti-Muslim rhetoric. Let’s remember, Guandolo once claimed American Muslims “do not have a First Amendment right to do anything.”

  • Franklin Graham continues to spread anti-Muslim hate

    Source: World Religion News. On July 17, Franklin Graham made one of the most bigoted posts about Muslims on his Facebook. As the president of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan’s Purse, it’s assumed he would aim to spread love. However, he has, time and again, chosen to use his platform and ability to reach millions to spread hate toward Muslims. The post in question received thousands of likes and comments from supporters.

  • Officials considering monitoring mosques after shooting in Chattanooga

    Source: WPDE. Law enforcement agencies across the country are reassessing security in the wake of the shooting rampage last week in Chattanooga, Tennessee. And the focus is once again on young radicalized Muslim men and the signs police all too often miss. Some security experts say the way to stop the next act of domestic terrorism is to place officers inside America’s most sacred spaces.