NY: Muslims Call for Jail Anti-Islam Chaplain's Dismissal


NY: ROCKLAND MUSLIMS CALL FOR JAILED CHAPLAIN'S DISMISSAL

Local Muslims outraged that the Rockland county jail chaplain distributed anti-Islam tracts to inmates at the jail are calling for her dismissal.

Teresa Darden Clapp, an ordained Christian minister, was suspended Thursday for passing out religious cartoon booklets that condemned Islam and contained derogatory depictions and descriptions of Allah and the prophet Muhammad, including characterizing Allah as an "idol" and devil and Muhammad as a criminal and a "religious dictator."

"Our congregation was very shaken. We are very upset about these false allegations against our religion," Azra Fasihuddin, a West Nyack resident and member of the Islamic Center of Rockland, said yesterday. "She should be let go. And why is she being paid while she is suspended?"

Rockland County Sheriff James Kralik yesterday said that was according to procedure.

"That's basically what we do with many of our officers when we are not sure of the contributing circumstances as to why something was done - was it done with malicious intent? Was it done with ignorance? Was it done without knowledge at all, just distributing information that came in?

"As we learn more information about it and gain a better understanding of it, we will change as necessary," he said. He said he was meeting with officials from the Islamic Center of Rockland tonight to discuss the incident.

Clapp's unpublished home number was not in service yesterday. She was not at home yesterday afternoon and did not respond to a message left with someone there.

Jail officials don't know how many tracts were distributed. They initially learned of them when an inmate complained.

The booklets were published by Chick Publications, a Christian production company that has condemned Islam, Roman Catholicism, homosexuality and Harry Potter.

 


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