Direct link to scholarships offered by  Govt. of India

List of Private NGOs offering scholarships

Abu Marwan Abdal Malik Ibn Zuhr: ‘Avenzoar’

Abu Marwan Abdal Malik Ibn Zuhr, known in the west as Avenzoar, was

Ummid Assistant

AMU declares entrance test dates for its UPSC coaching centre

Welcome Guest! You are here: Home » Views & Analysis

Media ignored Senate hearing on civil rights of American Muslims

Monday April 04, 2011 02:39:14 PM, Abdus Sattar Ghazali

Related Articles

Asian American bodies denounce hearings targeting Muslims

As a US Congressional panel began a controversial hearing on the radicalisation of Muslim Americans, several organizations representing South Asian, Chinese, Japanese and other Asian American communities denounced the move. .  »

On March 29, Democratic Senator Dick Durbin held the first-ever Congressional hearing on the civil rights of American Muslims by saying a "backlash" which began after the attacks of September 11, 2001, continues against "innocent Muslims, Arabs, south Asians and Sikhs." American Muslims are entitled to the same constitutional protections as other Americans, Durbin said, adding that this is an issue of "not just free exercise of religion but freedom of speech."

The hearing, largely ignored by the media, came just a few weeks after a controversial high-profile hearing held by Representative Peter King chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, on the so-called Muslim radicalization. The New York Republican has accused the Muslim community of refusing to cooperate with law enforcement and charged that preaching in some U.S. mosques was leading to radicalization.


Senator Durbin said that the goal of his hearings was to show that most Muslim Americans “are patriotic, law abiding people who simply want to live their life as we do.” “Many of our nation’s founders fled religious persecution, which is why our Constitution puts great importance on religious freedom,” Durbin said adding: “Today, addressing anti-Muslim discrimination is an important civil rights issue of our time. It is important for our generation to renew our founding charter’s commitment to religious diversity and to protect the liberties guaranteed by our Bill of Rights.”


Senator Durbin went on to say: “We should all agree that it is wrong to blame an entire community for the wrongdoing of a few. Guilt by association is not the American way. And American Muslims are entitled to the same constitutional protections as every other American.”

 

According to the Washington Post, the hearing featured the same partisan sparring and many of the same arguments as Rep. Peter King’s hearing on Muslim radicals just three weeks ago.


Senator Lindsey Graham, the ranking Republican on the subcommittee, said that "there are efforts to recruit radical Muslims that must be dealt with." Graham added, "To the American Muslim community I stand with you. But you're going to have to help your country. I'm asking you to get in this fight."


Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), meanwhile, said that he was “a bit perplexed by the focus of today’s hearing.”

 

“If we’re concerned about the most egregious hate crimes,” he said, "Crimes against Jews and Christians far outnumber those against American Muslims.”

 

Kyl also defended Rep. King’s anti-Muslim hearings, stating, “Political correctness cannot stand in the way of identifying those who would do us harm.”

 

Testifying on March 29 were four witnesses: Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington; the executive director of Muslim Advocates and former counsel to the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee that dealt with civil rights and religious profiling, Farhana Khera; Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Thomas Perez; and law school dean Alex Acosta, former assistant attorney general for civil rights under George W. Bush.


In his testimony, McCarrick, an internationally-known voice on peace and justice issues, drew a parallel between the experiences of Catholics and those of American Muslims. “Catholics have been explicit targets of the Ku Klux Klan and the Know Nothing Party,” McCarrick said. “The very idea of a Catholic in the White House was questioned. Because of this history, we cannot help but be sensitive to the experiences of other religious groups who suffer prejudice, bias and discrimination.”


Cardinal McCarrick said today, we note with particular sadness that Muslim Americans, with whom we have had a positive ongoing dialogue for over two decades, have had their loyalty and beliefs questioned publicly in sweeping and uninformed ways. “This causes us great concern and compels us to reach out in solidarity in support of their dignity and rights as Americans and believers.”


Thomas Perez, the assistant attorney general for civil rights, told the Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing: "We continue to see a steady stream of violence against Muslims... The good news is that with each wave of intolerance, our nation has responded by passing news laws."

 

He said regrettably, Arab-American, Muslim American, Sikh-American and South Asian American individuals have become targets for those who wrongfully wish to fix blame on members of these groups for the despicable acts of terrorists. Perez said since 9-11, the Department of Justice has investigated more than 800 incidents involving violence, threats, vandalism and arson against persons perceived to be Muslim or to be of Arab, Middle Eastern, or South Asian origin.


Farhana Khera, the executive director of Muslim Advocates, in a 20-page testimony described the anti-Muslim climate and provide examples of American Muslims and institutions that have been unfairly targeted.
 

She said that in the last several months, anti-Muslim rhetoric has reached a disturbing new level as “prominent religious, military and even political leaders have joined the fray, feeding fear and hysteria, with some going so far as to say Islam is a cult, not a religion.”

 

Khera pointed out that work place discrimination against Muslims is at an all-time high. From 2008 to 2009 25 percent of all complaints to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission were Muslim bias-based. In addition, community opposition to the construction of mosques has increased and is “getting uglier.”


Not surprisingly, the hearing on protecting the civil rights of American Muslims was criticized as a sideshow by the Republican Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, Peter King, who organized the high-profile congressional hearing three weeks ago into the so-called radicalization in the Muslim community.

 

"This just perpetuates the myth that somehow Muslims are the victim of September 11," King, told Fox News. King questioned why Durbin wouldn't examine civil rights violations of other religious groups.

 

"The best they can do is come back with these hearings by Senator Durbin, which is somehow trying to create the illusion that there's a violation of civil rights of Muslims in this country. It's absolutely untrue, and to me it makes no sense," King said.


Read full version on: http://www.amperspective.com/?page_id=1342


 

Abdus Sattar Ghazali is the Executive Editor of the online magazine American Muslim Perspective: www.amperspective.com

Email: asghazali2011 (@) gmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

  Bookmark and Share                                          Home | Top of the Page

Comments

Note: By posting your comments here you agree to the terms and conditions of www.ummid.com

Comments powered by DISQUS

 

 

 

Top Stories

Laurels, awards galore for Team India

Laurels and rewards flowed for the Indian cricket team Sunday, a day after it won the World Cup, with several state governments announcing cash awards and other incentives for the members of the victorious squad.   »

 Jharkhand to make him 'Doctor' Dhoni

Emotional Tendulkar rides on his team mates shoulders at Wankhede

 

  Most Read

India set for biggest electoral battle after 2009

Amid corruption sagas that have dented India's ruling coalition, five states go to the polls from Monday in the country's largest electoral exercise in two years that holds the .  »

 Stage set for Assam first phase elections

Israel asks UN to dump Gaza war crimes report

Israel has asked the United Nations to dump a damning report on its much-criticised military operation in Gaza two years back after its author regretted some of his conclusions. Israel Prime Minister   »

Israel asks UN to help block planned Gaza flotilla

 

  News Pick

Secularism is the core ideology of Congress: Mahesh Bhatt

Eminent film director and social activist Mahesh Bhatt said that secularism is in my blood and I cannot imagine India other than being secular  »

'Migration of Kashmiri Pandits created vacuum in J&K'

Describing Kashmiri Pandits as an integral part of Kashmiri ethos, state minister Ali Mohammad Sagar today said the community's large-scale migration from the state has created a vacuum in the society. The state rural  »

Happy next-door-brother India has won: Pakistan

It would have been wonderful if Pakistan had won the cricket World Cup but the Indian team deserved to win, said many Pakistanis who avidly watched   »

World Cup for India is Asia's win too: Pakistani daily

Yemen opposition tells Saleh to quit, presents new plan

Yemen's opposition Saturday told embattled President Ali Abdullah Saleh to hand over power to his deputy as part of a fresh  »

Saleh to sacrifice 'blood and soul' to confront opponents

'Former Libyan spy chief was double agent for Britain, US'

Musa Kusa, the former Libyan intelligence chief who defected to Britain, was acting as a double agent for the MI6 and the CIA for a decade, an official said.  »

Libyan rebels die in NATO air strike: Report

 

Picture of the Day

A Supporter with Indian Tri-color painted on his body and carrying the flag in hand, near the Wankhede Staidum in Mumbai during the final match between India and Sri Lanka. India beat Lanka by six wickets to take home the 2011 Cricket World Cup.

(Photo: AP)

 

 
 
 
 
 

RSS  |  Contact us

| Quick links

News

 

Subscribe to

Ummid Assistant

 

National

Religion

RSS

Scholarships

About us

International

Culture

Twitter

Government Schemes

Feedback

Regional

History

Facebook

Education

Register

Politics

Opinion

Newsletter

 

Contact us

Business

Career

     

Education

       

 

 

Ummid.com: Disclaimer | Terms of Use | Advertise with us | Link Exchange

Ummid.com is part of the Awaz Multimedia & Publications providing World News, News Analysis and Feature Articles on Education, Health. Politics, Technology, Sports, Entertainment, Industry etc. The articles or the views displayed on this website are for public information and in no way describe the editorial views. The users are entitled to use this site subject to the terms and conditions mentioned.

© 2010 Awaz Multimedia & Publications. All rights reserved.