(WASHINGTON, D.C., 7/5/16) – The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nationâ€™s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today said raised constitutional concerns regarding the House Republican â€œanti-terrorismâ€ package assembled by Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and said it would result in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) investigating the religious and political beliefs of ordinary Muslims.
This week, House Republicans plan to vote on a bill (Homeland Safety and Security Act [H.R. 5611]) that would inevitably result in the religious profiling of ordinary American Muslims by creating an office in DHS to â€œcounter radical Islamist terrorism in the United Statesâ€ by â€œidentifying populations targeted by radical Islamist terrorism propagandaâ€ and managing â€œoutreach and engagement activities. . .directed toward communities at risk for radicalization and recruitment for radical Islamist terrorism activities.â€
In a statement by CAIR Government Affairs Department Director Robert McCaw on the â€œHomeland Safety and Security Act:â€
â€œThe House Republican â€˜anti-terrorismâ€™ package unconstitutionally supports counterterrorism measures that would inevitably result in the singling out and profiling of ordinary American Muslims based on their religious and political beliefs.
â€œThe American Muslim community utterly rejects violent extremism. Creating an office that narrowly shifts the DHS counterterrorism strategy away from following actual leads and preventing illegal and violent acts, to monitoring the thoughts and beliefs of American citizens is akin to religious McCarthyism.
â€œRepublicans in Congress should listen to our nationâ€™s law enforcement leaders, like FBI director James Comey, who recently remarked that American Muslims â€˜do not want people committing violence, either in their community or in the name of their faith, and so some of our most productive relationships are with people who see things and tell us things who happen to be Muslim.â€™
â€œWe believe that religious and ethnic profiling is unconstitutional and should not serve as the basis of our nationâ€™s national security strategy. Congress should continue to support measures that pursue criminal actions, not religious or political beliefs.â€
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, email@example.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726,Â firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR Communications Coordinator Nabeelah Naeem, 202-341-4171, email@example.com