A prominent national Islamic civil rights and
advocacy group today called on Arizona law enforcement authorities and the
FBI to investigate an attack by vandals on a Muslim-owned car as a possible
The Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said a
Muslim in Tucson, Ariz., reported that his family’s car was vandalized in
the parking lot of his apartment building sometime late Monday or early
Tuesday of last week. According to the victim, a U.S. resident of Jordanian
origin, the car’s tires were slashed, the windshield was smashed and a
racist note was taped to the vehicle. The note, which was taken by the
investigating police officer, said: “You are not welcome here. Go back home
you stupid f*ckers.”
CAIR also expressed concern about a series of similar incidents of
vandalism reported recently by Muslims nationwide. A New York Muslim
reported finding his car window smashed with a brick. In Virginia, a Muslim
reported two separate incidents of vandalism to a car. And in New Jersey, a
Muslim found his car’s windshield smashed in his driveway.
“While some of these incidents do not have overt signs of bias, taken
together they form a disturbing pattern that should be noted by law
enforcement authorities and elected officials,” said CAIR Executive
Director Nihad Awad. He added that the current Republican National
Convention offers an excellent opportunity for GOP leaders to speak out
against anti-Muslim prejudice and stereotyping.
Awad said other incidents targeting Muslim individuals and Islamic
institutions have taken place recently across America.
Just last week in New Jersey, a Muslim driver reported being attacked by a
white male in another car who punched him in the face while he was sitting
in his car at a traffic light. During the incident, the attacker reportedly
called the victim a “terrorist” and a “sand n*gger.” He also allegedly told
the victim to “go back to whatever f*cking Arab country you came from.”
Also this month, CAIR called on the FBI to investigate an intentionally-set
fire at a Muslim store in McAllen, Texas, as a possible hate crime and
sought felony charges in a bias attack on a New York Muslim taxi driver.
Late last month, two Muslim teenagers in Buffalo, N.Y., say they were
targeted by white teenagers who shouted ethnic slurs and then tried to hit
the girls with their car. A Muslim woman driver in Illinois and a Muslim
shopper in California were assaulted at the end of June by attackers
shouting anti-Muslim and racist slurs.
Earlier this year in Florida, vandals wrote “Kill all Muslims” inside the
Islamic Community Center in the Tampa suburb of Lutz. The FBI is also
investigating vandalism and threatening messages targeting the Islamic
Community of Southwest Florida in Charlotte Harbor. In Missouri, vandals
painted a Nazi swastika and the word “die” on an addition under
construction at the Islamic Foundation of Greater St. Louis. Three Miami
Islamic centers were vandalized.
In Texas, a man was arrested for threatening an El Paso Islamic center, an
arson suspect was arrested at the scene of a fire at a Muslim business in
San Antonio and vandals scrawled racist graffiti on the interior of a
Lubbock mosque. A home-made bomb exploded in the mailbox of a Houston,
Texas, Islamic center.
As a response to these and other anti-Muslim incidents, CAIR published a
“Muslim Community Safety Kit.” The safety kit may be obtained free of
charge by e-mailing email@example.com. (Include name, address and phone
number when requesting the safety kit.)
CAIR, America’s largest Islamic civil liberties group, has 28 regional
offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada.
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