As-salaamu alaykum (peace be to you).
I am writing to share with you what happened in the past few days, to ask you to report to CAIR if something similar happens in your area, and also to ask for your support.
The good news is, CAIR is pushing back -- and winning -- against the growing number of individuals and groups seeking to profit from the promotion of anti-Muslim hate in law enforcement circles.
Just this week -- in partnership with the local Muslim community and the Southern Poverty Law Center -- we were able to convince a state agency in Virginia to withdraw accreditation for a three-day training program entitled "Jihadi Networks in America" taught to sheriff's officers by John Guandolo, a notorious anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist.
Guandolo is infamous for the bizarre claim that the current CIA director is a secret Muslim agent of a foreign government and the assertion that American Muslims "do not have a First Amendment right to do anything."
Knowing Mr. Guandolo's anti-Muslim views, we sprang into action when we learned that he would be "training" law enforcement agents about Islam and Muslims. We sent letters to the sheriff and other officials informing them of Guandolo's history of bias and set up an action alert so that concerned people like you could share your concerns with the sheriff's office. Along with local Muslim leaders, we had a meeting with the sheriff and were eventually able to give a presentation about Islam and Muslims to about 30 law enforcement officers.
Most importantly, we also contacted the state agency that was offering training credits to the officers who took Guandolo's course. After reviewing Guandolo's history of spreading false information, that agency decided not to offer credits for the sessions. (You can see their press release on the right.)
This victory is similar to the one that we achieved last year when CAIR got a similar anti-Muslim bigot banned from three trainings in Illinois.
CAIR has established a full-time department to monitor and combat this campaign of misinformation about Islam and Muslims.
We need your help in countering this propaganda campaign targeting you, your family and your faith.
Can we count on your financial support? We need to raise $110,000 in order to conduct further research to produce high-quality video and reports documenting the Islamophobia network and to enhance our staff capacity to challenge their activities (our Islamophobia department is currently only one person).
Please take a minute TODAY to show your support for our work by making a donation.
|A NOTE TO IMAMS AND OTHER LEADERS: As leaders of communities that will inevitably feel the impact of growing Islamophobia, I ask that you make a special effort to encourage community members to support CAIR.|
Please go to www.cair.com right now to make a contribution. You can also mail your contribution to: CAIR, 453 New Jersey Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C., 20003.