(LOS ANGELES, CA – 9/2/2020) – The Greater Los Angeles Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA) today condemned a Facebook group that asks potential members an Islamophobic question about their opinion of Islam and questioned why several policymakers are members.
The group is called California For Trump and describes itself as an “Awesome Patriotic Community.” To gain membership, applicants must answer three questions, including a defamatory question about Islam’s Prophet Muhammad.
The group has more than 60,000 members, including:
- Garden Grove Mayor Steve Jones
- Los Alamitos City Council Member Dean Grose
- Al Murray, a former mayor of Tustin and currently a policy advisor for Orange County Supervisor Don Wagner
In a statement, CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush said:
“The Islamophobic question on this Facebook group shows the depths of bigoty and xenophobia running rampant in our country, especially in online forums where members either assume they have a form of anonymity or they simply choose to express their inner hatred.
“We are especially concerned that current elected officials and policy makers in government would join a group that makes answering a bigoted part of entry. When policymakers and elected leaders expose themselves to bigoted associations like this, it makes marginalized minorities question if their leaders will fairly represent them.
“Additionally, as anti-Muslim hate has exponentially increased over the past few years, we have continually warned about the danger of how normalizing hate speech leads into hate threats and hate attacks.
“We call upon these leaders – and others who are part of this group – to denounce anti-Muslim hatred and leave this group.”
Ayloush urged community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR-LA’s Civil Rights Department at 714-776-1177 or by filing a report at: https://bit.ly/2L9Ezsw.
CAIR-LA is Southern California’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice and empower American Muslims.
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CONTACT: CAIR-LA Communications Manager Eugene W. Fields, 714-851-4851 or firstname.lastname@example.org