Ask Dr. Laura to apologize for anti-Muslim tirade
CAIR today called on nationally-syndicated radio talk show host Dr. Laura Schlessinger to apologize for an "anti-Muslim tirade" on her November 17th program. ("Dr. Laura's" radio program is heard by 12 million listeners on some 270 stations nationwide.) Muslims who contacted CAIR said Schlessinger's remarks crossed the line from legitimate commentary on terrorism to Islamophobic bigotry.
The offensive comments came in response to a mother who asked whether her 16-year-old daughter should take part in a Catholic High School class field trip to a local mosque. The purpose of the field trip was to have the students in a "moral themes" class learn how "Muslims are treated" in America.
Schlessinger said in her response: "This is a class on morals. What is the point of going to a mosque?...You're joking of course…How many Americans have tortured and murdered Muslims…I think you ought to stand up against this class and this teacher. This is despicable. You tell him you are willing to go to the mosque only if it is one that has done its best to route out terrorists in its midst…instead of complaining…I am horrified that you would let her go…I am so sick and tired of all the Arab-American groups whining and complaining about some kind of treatment…What culture and what religion were all the murderers of 9/11…they murdered us….That's the culture you want your daughter to learn about?"
(To listen to Schlessinger's response, go to: http://www.drlaura.com/listen/ Click on November 17, and then on "Dr. Laura 9." There is a charge for access.)
"Dr. Laura's anti-Muslim tirade demonstrates a level of hostility toward Islam that should be of concern to her program's audience and sponsors," said CAIR Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. "It has been our experience that one-on-one interactions with ordinary American Muslims are the best way to dispel Islamophobic stereotypes and promote religious tolerance. It is a pity that Dr. Laura would interfere with that learning process by dissuading a student from visiting a mosque."
Hooper noted that Schlessinger also confused Arab-Americans and Muslims in her comments. (Many Arab-Americans are Christian.)
In 2002, CAIR sent a letter to Schlessinger asking for a clarification of her on-air claim that there is a "Muslim plan" to take over the world. When Schlessinger's extremist views have been confronted in the past, she has often responded by attacking the source of the challenge, instead of dealing with the substance of the complaints.
ACTION REQUESTED: (As always, be POLITE. Hostile comments WILL be used to further defame Islam and Muslims.)
Contact Dr. Laura to ask that she apologize for her remarks and engage the American Muslim community in a positive dialogue.
Dr. Laura Schlessinger
15260 Ventura Blvd, Suite 500
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403-5307