Action Alert: Join CAIR in Thanking Florida Reps. Cortes, Mercado and Smith for their Opposition to Unconstitutional Anti-BDS Legislation

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 2/6/2018) – The Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Florida), the nation’s largest civil rights and advocacy organization, is urging all those who value the First Amendment to join CAIR-Florida in thanking Florida State Representatives Smith, Mercado and Cortes for their unwavering fight for justice for all by opposing unconstitutional “anti-BDS” legislation.

The United States Supreme Court has held that boycotts, like the Boycott, Divestment and Sanction (BDS) movement, “bring about political, social, and economic change,” (NAACP v. Claiborne Hardware Co., 458 U.S. 886, 911 (1982).

CLICK HERE TO THANK FLORIDA STATE REPRESENTATIVES CORTES, MERCADO AND SMITH FOR THEIR BRAVE AND HONORABLE STANCE

On January 31, 2018, Representatives Cortes (D-FL), Mercado (D-FL) and Smith (D-FL) voted against HB 545, a bill that prohibits businesses on the Scrutinized Companies that Boycott Israel List from doing business with the state of Florida. Even amidst strong opposition, these three representatives took a brave stand to defend the right to freedom of speech granted in the First Amendment.

HB 545 was introduced at a time when Palestinian human rights activists in the United States and elsewhere have embraced boycotts as a strong, peaceful and effective tool to pressure the Israeli government to respect the human rights of Palestinians and to influence the American public to join in doing the same.

“We thank Representatives Cortes, Mercado and Smith for their courageous and honorable stance against a bill that seeks to suppress the freedom of speech and political expression for an internationally-recognized human rights cause,” said Rasha Mubarak, CAIR’s Central Florida Regional Director.

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.

 


Action Alert: CAIR Urges Support for Sen. Jeff Merkley’s Resolution Condemning Ethnic Cleansing of Rohingya Muslims

screenshot outlook.office.com 2018 01 24 14 29 38 521(WASHINGTON, D.C., 1/24/2018) -- The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest civil rights and advocacy organization, is urging all Americans of conscience to contact their elected representatives in Congress and encourage them to support a bipartisan resolution 376 introduced by Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) condemning the ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya Muslims in Burma (Myanmar).

CLICK HERE  TO TAKE ACTION & EMAIL YOUR MEMBERS OF CONGRESS

On January 23, 2018, Senators Merkley, Todd Young (R-IN), Tim Kaine (D-VA), and John McCain (R-AZ) introduced bipartisan S.Res.376 condemning the ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya and called for the “safe, dignified, voluntary and sustainable return” of the displaced refugees.

They were joined by Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Edward J. Markey (D-MA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Tina Smith (D-MN), and Chris Coons (D-DE).

“We welcome this strong bipartisan stance against the human rights abuses suffered by Rohingya Muslim families and children. It is time that the Burmese government and military are held accountable for their ethnic cleansing, and for the Rohingya refugees to safety return home with dignity, respect and full rights as citizens,” said Government Affairs Department Coordinator Amineh Safi. 

In November 2017, Sen. Merkley led a congressional fact-finding mission to Burma and Bangladesh where he heard first-hand accounts of systematic rape, murder, and children’s stories of seeing their houses burned down by the Burmese military.

“Kabir*, male, nine years old and Hadi*, male, 11 years old, missing presumed dead; recounted by their father Hakim*, male, 41 years old. ‘When the military came to our village they told us to go in our house and stay there. If we didn’t comply, they said, they would beat us up. So I took my four children and wife inside. Then they set our house on fire with us still in it. We panicked and tried to get out of our house, but everything happened so quickly. I saw my six-year-old daughter’s skirt on fire, so I grabbed her and ran out of the house. My wife and 12-year-old son also made it out of our house, but we lost two of our children in the chaos. I still don’t know what happened to them. I fear that they didn’t make it out of the house in time and were burned alive. As people tried to run away the military attacked them with machetes. We all ran away as fast as we could. It took us 15 days to get to Bangladesh. The whole way my daughter was crying. She needs urgent medical attention. She has really bad burns on her upper legs and in her genital area. She is in so much pain.’”

SEE: “HORRORS I WILL NEVER FORGET” 

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.

La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

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CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Department Coordinator Amineh Safi, 202.646.6033, asafi@cair.com; CAIR-Oregon Board Chair Zakir Khan, 626-502-8450, zkhan@cair.com

 


Action Alert: CAIR Condemns Trump’s Bigoted Remarks, Asks Imams to Offer Friday Sermons Urging Rejection of Racism

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 1/12/18) – Following President Trump’s most recent racist remarks, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, is calling on imams (Islamic religious leaders) nationwide to reiterate Islam’s rejection of racism in their sermons (khutbas) for today’s weekly congregational prayers (jummah).  

In a statement reacting to Trump’s racist comments targeting Haitians and immigrants from African countries, CAIR said:

“CAIR and the American Muslim community strongly condemn the racist and white supremacist beliefs reflected in President Trump’s remarks. It is disturbing to hear a president of the United States reject the dignity and humanity of whole communities that have made invaluable contributions to our nation. The president’s latest anti-immigrant comments are a repudiation of American values of acceptance and inclusion, and will inevitably harm our nation’s image and interests worldwide.”

CAIR is urging imams to refer to the many Islamic texts rejecting racism and bigotry in all its forms, including:

  • The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “All people are equal as the teeth of a comb.”
  • In his last sermon, the Prophet Muhammad said: “All humankind is from Adam and Eve. An Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab, nor does a non-Arab have any superiority over an Arab. Also, a white person has no superiority over a black person, nor does someone who is black have any superiority over someone who is white -- except by piety and good action.”
  • The Prophet once told a companion: “You are not better than people (of other races) unless you excel them in piety.”
  • In the Quran, Islam’s revealed text, God states: “O humankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes that you may know each other (not that you may despise each other). Verily, the most honored of you in the sight of God is the most righteous of you.” The Holy Quran, 49:13
  • Islam’s holy text promotes gender equality when it states: “So their Lord answers their prayers, saying: 'I will never let the (good) work of any of you, whether male or female, be wasted. You are members one of another.' (The Holy Quran, 3:195) The Quran also states: “The believers, men and women, are protectors, one of another.” (Quran 9:71)
  • A person once asked the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him): "What is partisanship (asabiyyah)?" The Prophet replied: "(It means) helping your own people in an unjust cause."
  • As God states in the Quran: "Let there arise from among you a community (of people) inviting to all that is good, enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong; they are the ones who will be successful." The Holy Quran, 3:104

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.

La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

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CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, rmccaw@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com  

 


Action Alert: CAIR Condemns Termination of TPS for Salvadorans, Urges Redesignation for Syrians and Yemenis Living in U.S.

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 1/11/18) -- The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned the Trump administration’s announcement this week terminating the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) of the 263,000 Salvadoran immigrants living in the United States, the humanitarian program allowing them to live and work in the U.S. since a pair of earthquakes devastated El Salvador in 2001.

Yesterday, the U.S. State Department issued a Level 3 Travel Advisory for El Salvador, cautioning Americans “do not travel” to the country due to "violent crime, such as murder, assault, rape, and armed robbery, [being] common" – "gang activity, such as extortion, violent street crime, and narcotics and arms trafficking, is widespread" – "local police may lack the resources to respond effectively to serious criminal incidents."

“President Trump’s termination of the TPS status of Salvadoran immigrants living in the U.S. is heartless. It will break up countless families whose children were born here and are citizens. It goes against the very concerns raised in the State Department’s travel advisory warning Americans not to travel to El Salvador,” said CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert S. McCaw.

TAKE ACTION BELOW – URGE DHS TO REDESIGNATE TPS FOR SYRIANS AND YEMENIS LIVING IN THE UNITED STATES

In response to the Trump Administration canceling the TPS status of an immigrant community whose native country still poses a significant safety risk -- and the cancellation of TPS status for Syrian and Yemini immigrants in the U.S. up for reconsideration on March 31 and September 3, 2018 – CAIR is urging all Americans to call the Department of Homeland Security Public Comment Line at 202-282-8495 and leave the following message seeking the redesignation of Syrian and Yemini immigrant’s TPS status:

“Hello,

This is [State Your Name]. Out of concern I am calling to advise the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to redesignate the Temporary Protected Status of Syrian and Yemini immigrants living and working in the U.S.

This recommendation is based on U.S. Department of State advising Americans to not travel to either country due to the possible threat of terrorism, civil unrest and armed conflict. Syrian and Yemini immigrants living in the U.S. deserve the same consideration when it comes to their personal safety and wellbeing.

Thank you.”

There are about 6,200 Syrian and 800 Yemen immigrants with TPS in the U.S., with both nationalities granted protection in response to ongoing armed conflicts and civil unrest in their home counties.

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.

La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

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CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, rmccaw@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

 


Action Alert: CAIR Calls on Maryland Mosques to Participate in ‘Immigrant Solidarity Weekend’, Dedicate Friday Sermons to Prayers for Immigrant Communities

(BALTIMORE, MD, 1/11/18) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, is calling on Maryland mosque leaders and imams (Islamic religious leaders) to support statewide ‘Immigrant Solidarity Weekend’ January 12th - 14th by dedicating this week’s Friday sermons to urging prayers, support, and advocacy for Maryland’s diverse immigrant communities.  

SEE: ‘Immigrant Solidarity Weekend’ Facebook Event Page 

“Friday sermons are part of a dedicated effort by Muslim communities to help shine a much-needed spotlight on important issues impacting our most vulnerable communities, including immigrants and refugees” said CAIR Representative Dr. Zainab Chaudry. “Thousands of families impacted by this administration’s unethical policies need our prayers, advocacy, and support.” 

Standing in solidarity with immigrants is a central part of many faiths. In the Islamic faith tradition, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) narrated: "None of you will have faith until he wishes for his brother [or sister] what he wishes for himself."

In his final sermon, he also iterated: “All humankind is from Adam and Eve. An Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab, nor does a non-Arab have any superiority over an Arab. Also, a white person has no superiority over a black person, nor does someone who is black have any superiority over someone who is white -- except by piety and good action.”

In the Islamic Holy text, the Quran, God states directly:

  • “O you who believe: Be persistently firm in justice, witnesses for Allah, even if it be against yourselves or your parents and relatives.” The Holly Quran 4:135
  • “O humankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes that you may know each other (not that you may despise each other). Verily, the most honored of you in the sight of God is the most righteous of you.” The Holy Quran, 49:13

Meanwhile, the Trump administration has implemented numerous anti-immigrant policies and executive orders in the past year, including:

• Executive order increasing interior enforcement of immigration targeting and directing an effort to build an additional border wall

• Muslim Ban 1.0

• iPad/Laptop Ban

• Muslim Ban 2.0

• Muslim Ban 3.0

• Reducing the number of refugees permitted to be resettled into the U.S. to the lowest it's been in decades

• Muslim Ban 4.0

• Ending deferred action (DACA) for an estimated 800,000 childhood arrivals 

• Ending temporary protected status for 45,000 Haitians 

• Ending temporary protected status for 200,000 Salvadorians, which will impact them and their over 190,000 U.S. born children

• Beginning efforts to revoke citizenship from naturalized citizens

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.

La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

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CONTACT: CAIR Representative Zainab Chaudry, zchaudry@cair.com, 410-971-6062