In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ANTI-ISLAM LITERATURE GIVEN TO NC HIGH SCHOOLERS
CAIR calls for disciplinary action, increased education about Islam
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 2/21/07) – A prominent national Islamic civil rights and advocacy group today called for disciplinary action against a public high school teacher in North Carolina who reportedly allowed the distribution of Islamophobic literature in his class.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) says a Muslim parent whose daughter attends the Raleigh, N.C., high school reported that the teacher invited a guest speaker who handed out literature in his ninth-grade social sciences class that compared the teachings of Jesus with false accusations against Islam’s Prophet Muhammad. (Muslims in fact view Jesus as a Prophet of God equal to the Prophet Muhammad.)
Anti-Islam materials, including a pamphlet called “Jesus Not Muhammad,” were handed out in the class by a representative of a North Carolina-based Christian missionary group. The pamphlet labeled the Prophet Muhammad “A criminal,” “Demon Possessed,” and “Inspired by Satan.”
Another document given to the students was titled “Do Not Marry a Muslim Man.” The document stated: “His [Muhammad’s] militant commands and pagan beliefs are contained in the Koran, the book of Islam. . .The Koran is the book of Islam that Muhammad claimed was revealed to him by Allah, the moon god of Arabs.”
In a letter to Dr. Adelphos Burns, superintendent of the Wake County Public School System, CAIR Legal Director Arsalan Iftikhar wrote:
“It is unconscionable for a teacher at any public school to abuse his or her position of trust by forcing such hate-filled, inaccurate and intolerant materials on students. One can only imagine what a Muslim student in the class might have experienced and how students of other faiths will now regard their Muslim classmates.”
CAIR called for an apology to the students, “appropriate” disciplinary action against the teacher, a review of policies regarding outside speakers at the school, and for increased diversity training and instruction on Islam for school staff and students.
A copy of CAIR’s letter was also sent to the North Carolina State Superintendent of Public Instruction.
The Washington-based council offers a publication called “An Educators Guide to Islamic Religious Practices” designed to help prevent such incident from occurring.
CAIR, America’s largest Islamic civil liberties group, has 32 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. 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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