CAIR-MA Seeks Hate Crime Probe of ‘USA’ Vandalism Targeting Local Mosque

 

(BOSTON, MA, 11/1/15) – The Massachusetts chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today called for a hate crime investigation of apparently bias-motivated vandalism targeting a Burlington, Mass., mosque.

CAIR-MA said the vandals spray-painted “USA” repeatedly on the exterior walls of the Islamic Center of Burlington. The graffiti, which appears to reflect a common Islamophobic theme that Muslims are not “real” Americans,” was discovered early this morning and reported to local police.

The same mosque has in the past been targeted by similar hate attacks. In 2013, CAIR called on law enforcement authorities to investigate vandalism of the mosque’s sign, also with “USA” graffiti. 

SEE: CAIR Asks FBI to Probe ‘USA’ Vandalism of Mass. Mosque Sign

“With national political figures falsely claiming that American Muslims cannot be patriotic citizens, it is not surprising that Islamic institutions are targeted by those emboldened by the mainstreaming of Islamophobia,” said CAIR-MA Executive Director Dr. John Robbins. “We ask that state and federal law enforcement authorities investigate the apparent bias motive for this attack on a house of worship and that our nation’s leaders speak out against growing anti-Muslim bigotry.”

He said CAIR had previously responded to the suggestion by leading GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson that an American Muslim is not fit to be president.

SEE: CAIR Announces Quran Giveaway in Response to Ben Carson’s Anti-Muslim Remarks

CAIR was also forced to respond to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s apparent willingness to close down American mosques, to a Maryland county commissioner’s published anti-Muslim smears, threats to a Tennessee school board member over the teaching of Islam in local schools.

SEE: CAIR Condemns Donald Trump’s Statement on Closing U.S. Mosques
Video: CAIR Interfaith News Conference on Maryland County Commissioner’s Anti-Muslim Smears
Video: CAIR Asks Feds to Probe Death Threats Over Teaching About Islam

Robbins noted that CAIR’s New York chapter recently called on state and national public officials to speak out against growing Islamophobia in America after a man was stabbed in Brooklyn, N.Y., allegedly for speaking Arabic.

CAIR also decried the low bail set for a man who allegedly assaulted a Muslim woman in Indiana while shouting “white power.”

Video: CAIR Says Low Bail for Attack on Indiana Muslim Woman Sends Wrong Message

In August, CAIR released a new brief, called “Toxic Hate,” indicating that rhetorical attacks on the nation’s Muslim community in the past year have a “more violent tone” than past spikes in Islamophobic sentiment.

The CAIR brief outlines incidents of violence and threats targeting individual Muslims, threats against groups of Muslims and threats and violence targeting Islamic houses of worship and institutions. It also includes a section on the recent phenomenon of armed anti-Islam demonstrations.

SEE: CAIR’s New ‘Toxic Hate’ Brief Outlines Violent Tone in Recent U.S. Islamophobia

CAIR has responded to vandalism and hate targeting mosques in Texas, Kentucky, Virginia, Nebraska, Tennessee, Ohio, New York, and other states.

SEE: CAIR Seeks Hate Crime Probe of Vandalism at Texas Mosque

Those incidents fit a pattern of increased hate-motivated crimes and bias incidents nationwide targeting persons and property associated, or perceived to be associated, with Islam and the American Muslim community.

CAIR is urging community leaders to obtain and implement safety measures outlined in its booklet, “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety.” The booklet may be requested through CAIR’s website: http://www.cair.com/mosque-safety-guide.html 

CAIR also asks Muslim community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR’s Civil Rights Department at 202-742-6420 or by filing a report at: http://www.cair.com/civil-rights/report-an-incident/view/form.html 

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

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CONTACT: CAIR-MA Executive Director Dr. John Robbins, 617-862-9159, jrobbins@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com; CAIR Communications Coordinator Nabeelah Naeem, 202-341-4171, nnaeem@cair.com

 

 

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About The Author

John Robbins

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