Muslim civil rights group asks CLEET to use 'credible and objective subject matter experts'
(OKLAHOMA CITY, OK, 10/28/13) â€“ The Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-OK) today called on the Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training (CLEET) to drop several anti-Muslim extremists who are scheduled to train law enforcement officers during a November 1 seminar at the Oklahoma legislature.
CAIR-OK said the Counterterrorism Caucus of the Oklahoma legislature will host a CLEET seminar, called “Iran, Hezbollah and the Drug Cartels: Counterterrorism Considerations,” on Friday in the Oklahoma House of Representatives chamber.
Speakers include notorious Islamophobe Lt. Gen. (Ret.) William G. “Jerry” Boykin, who asserts that ” should not be protected under the First Amendment,” that there should be “no mosques in America” and that there can be no interfaith dialogue or cooperation between Muslims and Christians. In 2003, President Bush rebuked Boykin for his anti-Muslim stance.
Another speaker at the seminar is Frank Gaffney, who is named in a recent CAIR Islamophobia report as a member of the “inner core” of those promoting anti-Muslim bigotry. CAIR's report, “Legislating Fear: Islamophobia and its Impact in the United States,” notes that Gaffney has been called “one of the country's leading anti-Muslim conspiracy theorists.”
The report's entry on Gaffney states:
“Gaffney's conspiracy theories include asserting that a new logo for the Department of Defense's Missile Defense Agency, which contained a crescent shape, was 'code-breaking evidence' of 'official U.S. submission to Islam.' His own ally Andrew McCarthy denounced as 'nutty' Gaffney's other theory that President Obama 'may still be Muslim.'. . .During a television appearance, Gaffney alleged that Islamic religious principles are seditious, 'In fact, it is absolutely antithetical, Sharia is, to our Constitution, and the pursuit of it as you said in your comment, Brigitte , is incompatible with the Constitution's Article VI, and therefore, far from being a protected religious practice, it is an impermissible act of sedition, which has to be prosecuted under our Constitution.'”
Gaffney was recently a key promoter of the bizarre conspiracy theory that Muslims in public service are infiltrating the government on behalf of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Clare M. Lopez, who is employed by Gaffney, will also help train the officers.
“Such a substantial and worthwhile topic should not become a propaganda tool in the hands of anti-Muslim extremists,” said CAIR-OK Executive Director Adam Soltani. “Our state's law enforcement personnel should be trained by credible and objective subject matter experts, not extremists with an Islamophobic agenda to promote.”
Soltani said using anti-Muslim speakers would violate CLEET's “Values and Behaviors” policy, which states that the council must conduct itself and its training “with the highest of standards and instill this value in all administrators and officers” and “provide programs, courses and services that enhance justice and public safety.”
“Using anti-Muslim bigots for training will in no way meet the 'highest standards' and will never 'enhance justice,'” said Soltani.
CAIR Oklahoma is a chapter of 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-OK Executive Director Adam Soltani, 405-248-5853, email@example.com; CAIR Oklahoma Development Coordinator Thomaira Babbit, 405-415-6851, firstname.lastname@example.org