(WASHINGTON, D.C., 12/8/2017) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today expressed support for political leaders who are boycotting President Trump’s visit to the opening of the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum on Saturday and encouraged other state and national leaders to boycott the event because of the president’s empowerment and promotion of racism and Islamophobia.
Civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) says he will not attend the museum opening because of Trump’s planned appearance. He cited the president’s “hurtful policies” that are an “insult” to those portrayed in the museum. The NAACP also criticized the president’s planned attendance at the opening.
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With Trump, Some African Americans to Skip Mississippi Event
The Mississippi Civil Rights Museum is the only state-sponsored museum of its kind in the country. Its exhibits document the history of the civil rights movement.
CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad said in a statement:
“President Trump should visit the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum after it opens to learn about the ongoing struggle for civil rights in our nation. Unfortunately, his presence at the opening ceremony would be used as a smoke screen for his empowerment of racism, white supremacy and Islamophobia.
“One need only recall President Trump’s race-baiting of professional athletes, his reluctance to condemn neo-Nazis in Charlottesville, his backing of Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore who recently claimed that America was at its greatest during the days of slavery, his call for the death penalty for five African-American and Hispanic young people falsely accused of rape, his misuse of ”˜Pocahontas’ as a racial slur, his retweeting of racist, Islamophobic and anti-Semitic material, his call for a ”˜total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States,’ his labeling of Mexican immigrants as ”˜rapists,’ his claim that a judge’s Mexican heritage made him unfit to preside over a case, and his leadership in the ”˜birther’ movement, which falsely claimed former President Obama was not born in this country.
“During his presidential campaign and now under his administration, we have witnessed an unprecedented rise in hate rhetoric and hate attacks on immigrants and members of racial and religious minority groups.
“We call on state and national leaders of all political backgrounds to boycott this event if President Trump is present, thereby sending a message that racism, white supremacy and Islamophobia are un-American and will not be tolerated or excused.”
Earlier this week, CAIR expressed deep concern over the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to allow President Trump’s “Muslim Ban” to be implemented until the court makes a final decision about the executive action’s constitutionality.
Last month, CAIR responded to what it called President Trump’s “incitement to violence against American Muslims” after he retweeted Islamophobic videos from an anti-Muslim British political leader who has been charged in the United Kingdom with “religious aggravated harassment.”
CAIR has reported an unprecedented spike in hate incidents targeting American Muslims and members of other minority groups since the election of Donald Trump as president.
The Washington-based civil rights and advocacy organization urges community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR’s Civil Rights Department at 202-742-6420 or by filing a report at: http://www.cair.com/report
CAIR recently launched an app to share critical “know your rights” information and to simplify the process to report hate crimes and bias incidents. CAIR is urging American Muslims and members of other minority groups to download the app and utilize this resource to stay informed and empowered.
For a quick download of CAIR’s civil rights app, click here: http://www.cair.com/app
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.
La misiÃ³n de CAIR es mejorar la comprensiÃ³n del Islam, fomentar el diÃ¡logo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensiÃ³n mutua.
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CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, firstname.lastname@example.org