Press Releases

CAIR Calls on Md. Board of Education Candidate to Explain his Anti-Muslim Bigotry to Students

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 6/11/2008) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today called on a candidate for the Board of Education of Frederick County, Md. to explain to students in that county how his anti-Muslim views will serve their educational needs.
According to the Fredrick News-Post, Joe Chmelik recently said, “(Muslims) are the masters of the death squad and they are good at it.” He made the remark in response to an Urbana High School club inviting a local Islamic leader to address students.
The Middle Eastern Studies Club at that school invited Yahya Hendi, the Muslim chaplain at Georgetown University and imam of the Islamic Society of Frederick, to speak about the history of Islam. Student attendance at the event was voluntary.
SEE: Muslim Cleric’s School Visit Challenged by Attorney (News-Post)

“Mr. Chmelik displays a profound ignorance of Islam and Muslims and open hostility towards the American Muslim community,” said CAIR National Legislative Director Corey Saylor. “Perhaps Mr. Chmelik should explain to the children of Frederick County how his hate-filled opinion would uphold the school system’s vision of educating them to ‘become caring, respectful, and responsible citizens and family members.’”
SEE: Frederick County Public Schools

According to the Fredrick County Public Schools website the board of education, “…gives final approval to curriculum matters and materials…” Five candidates are vying for three open school board seats in November’s general election. In a recent primary, Joe Chmelik finished with 6,323 votes.
CAIR, America’s largest Islamic civil liberties group, has 35 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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CONTACT: CAIR Strategic Communications Director Ahmed Rehab, 202-870-0166, E-Mail:; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, E-Mail:


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