When talk-show host Dennis Prager wrote a column in November decrying a congressman-elect’s decision to take his oath of office on the Koran rather than the Bible, he argued that it would “embolden Islamic extremists and make new ones.”

In a column for, Prager wrote that Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), the first Muslim elected to Congress, “should not be allowed” to swear on the Koran because “the act undermines American civilization.”

Soon, the Los Angeles radio host was at the center of the biggest controversy he has faced during decades in public life. Op-ed pages around the country rushed to pillory him. The Anti-Defamation League condemned his remarks. Former New York Mayor Ed Koch characterized him as a bigot and called for his ouster as a member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council.

Now, the tumult is extending to Prager’s scheduled appearance at the North County Chabad Center in Yorba Linda, where he will speak tonight on “Islam, Iran, the West and Israel.”

The Southern California office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations is calling him an “Islamophobic speaker,” while the director of the Islamic Shura Council of Southern California has said he “seeks the marginalization of American Muslims.”

Those groups, along with the Muslim Public Affairs Council, has called for the Chabad Center to invite a “Muslim representative” to balance Prager’s views.


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