Â (WASHINGTON, D.C., 7/30/14) — The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today called on the Republic Party of Virginia to repudiate remarks by one of its officials belittling the contributions of American Muslims and Sikhs.
Bob FitzSimmonds, GOP treasurer in Virginia posted anti-Muslim and anti-Sikh remarks on Facebook in response to President Obama marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan celebration Eid al-Fitr.
CAIR called on the party to denounce the anti-Muslim, anti-Sikh comments and asked for an apology. “Anti-Muslim and anti-Sikh bigotry should have no place in the Republic Party and those expressing such intolerant views should be held accountable,” said CAIR Government Affairs Manager Robert McCaw.
CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Manager Robert McCaw, 202-999-8292, email@example.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Backgrounder: On Facebook, Va. GOP Treasurer Belittles American Muslims, Sikhs (Washington Post)
Ibrahim Hooper, the national communications director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said FitzSimmonds “should think back to 20 percent of the slaves bought to America who were Muslim. I think they may have had something to do with building our nation.”
Obama could also have been thinking of the thousands of American Muslims who serve in the military; Muslim religious leaders like Warith Dean Muhammad or Malcolm X; Keith Ellison and Andre Carson, the first Muslim Americans to serve in Congress; basketball great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar or boxing great Muhammad Ali.
“Unfortunately, this is all too common an occurrence with the Republican Party and its leadership,” Hooper said. “Time and time again we've called on the Republican Party to separate itself from the Islamophobes who tend to come from the far right. It's ironic, because American Muslims are natural conservatives” who might be party members if it were not for statements like those, he said.