CAIR-CAN AND WINDSOR MUSLIMS ASK POLICE TO INVESTIGATE POSSIBLE HATE SPEECH
(OTTAWA, CANADA, JAN 13, 2007) – The Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CAN), Muslim Association of Canada (MAC), Windsor Islamic Association, Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), and Al Hijra Mosque and School, are asking the Windsor Police in Ontario to investigate the lecture series, “The Deadly Threat of Islam,” as a possible forum for hate speech.
The talks, sponsored by Windsor’s Theological Institute in association with the Campbell Baptist Church, are taking place each Thursday until February 1.
CAIR-CAN has received complaints based upon the first talk entitled “Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid: The Frightening Facts About Islam.” In response, CAIR-CAN yesterday asked the Windsor Police to investigate the lecture series and be on the alert for any hate speech that may be taking place at the talks.
Under Canadian law hate speech is prohibited. Investigations into hate speech fall under local police departments.
“If hateful speech is indeed being propagated in Windsor, it must be dealt with promptly under the law. We are asking the Windsor Police to take the matter seriously and conduct an investigation.
“Freedom of speech is a cherished Canadian value, however it is not an absolute. Hateful speech only succeeds in creating an atmosphere of fear, where divisions within Canadian society are made,” said Karl Nickner Executive Director of CAIR-CAN.
“We are asking Canadians of conscience to speak out against hatred and sensationalist campaigns. Groups that spread lies about a faith or people simply act to harm innocent citizens.
“We are proud of the diversity exemplified in Windsor and the thousands of Muslim Canadians, from doctors to auto-workers, that have helped build our city and country,” stated Dr. Nabil Asfour, MAC Windsor Chapter Head.
For more information please contact:
CAIR-CAN: Sameer Zuberi, Communications and Human Rights Coordinator, 613.795.2012; or Karl Nickner, Executive Director, 613.853.4111