Islamic Society of North America’s newly elected president, Ingrid Mattson, said Friday she objects to President Bush’s use of the term “Islamic fascism” when describing the enemy in the global war on terrorism.

Mattson, like other ISNA leaders, expressed empathy for the challenges government officials face in trying to keep the country safe, but she said the “inaccurate and unhelpful” rhetoric by Bush and other Republican lawmakers hurts peaceful, law-abiding Muslims who face growing scrutiny even five years after 9/11.

“This is a term that had very bad resonance in the Muslim majority world and makes us feel uncomfortable, so we’re hoping there can be some adjustment to this language,” Mattson said at a news conference kicking off ISNA’s four-day annual convention at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont.

Mattson said any harmful act carried out in the name of religion should simply be called “terrorism, crime or violence.”


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