CAIR embracing the race card: New focus or Exploitation?

The  Council on American–Islamic Relations (CAIR) appears to be attempting  to capitalize on the media attention generated by the Ferguson, MO shooting.  On 8/11/2014, CAIR issued an action alert that …

… called on imams (prayer leaders) nationwide to devote at least a portion of their khutbas (sermons) for tomorrow’s weekly congregational prayers (jummah) to the issues of racial equality and social justice.

That request comes in the wake of racial turmoil resulting from the fatal police shooting on Saturday of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Missouri.

An article published 8/16/2014 at Onislam.net, an Egyptian based website that frequently functions as a mirror outlet for CAIR statements and related news, highlighted the CAIR action alert.  It opened with …

… US Muslims have shared mass condemnations for the incident as a continuation of police profiling, brutality and violence against African Americans.

It should be noted that the details and facts regarding the shooting are still being collected and there have been no indications of profiling. This unfounded statement  sets the stage for a victim hood theme  CAIR frequently embraces.  The article continues with ..

“Despite progress in race relations over the past decades, our nation still has a long way to go to live up to the true American values of equality and justice for all,” the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) National Executive Director Nihad Awad said in a statement obtained by OnIslam.net.

The OnIslam article then moves away from the shooting to focus on Muslim issues with ….

Since 9/11, Muslims, estimated between six to seven million, have become sensitized to an erosion of their civil rights, with a prevailing belief that America was stigmatizing their faith.

Muslims’ anger has grown against the New York police following revelations in 2011 by the Associated Press that the NYPD used undercover agents to spy on Muslim communities.

A report by the AP said that the NYPD sent out undercover officers into ethnic communities to track daily life and monitor mosques as well as Muslim student organizations.

Police intimidation was not limited to Muslims.

CAIR’s media campaign related to the Ferguson shooting also included a television appearance featuring CAIR-MI director Dawud Walid :

In addition to CAIR, the Muslim Public Affairs Counsel (MPAC)  has focused on the Ferguson shooting.  MPAC issued a series of posts on Twitter referencing  race issues and suggesting solidarity with Palestinians:

mpac

As with Onislam.net,  MPAC’s website is claiming  the unsupported speculation the Ferguson shooting was a result of racial profiling.

CAIR’s motives are apparently being questioned by some in the American Muslim community.  An Open letter to CAIR, dated 08/15/2014, has been posted on several Muslim themed websites. The writer points out:

The encouragement to give a Friday sermon to address this issue is far too little, and too late. In fact, without a more concretely sustained response to racial injustices in America—particularly those that impact Blacks, Latinos, and Indigenous Americans—CAIR’s response seems not only reactionary, surfaced and sensational, but even opportunistic; …

The letter also criticizes CAIR for primarily focusing on issues that “confront Arab and Asian peoples.” 

∞∞∞∞∞∞∞∞

COMMENT/ANALYSIS“Sensational” and “opportunistic” appear to be proper labels for CAIR’s current agenda, especially since Rev. Al Sharpton is scheduled to be honored as the key note speaker for CAIR’s 20th Anniversary Banquet. 

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5 responses to “CAIR embracing the race card: New focus or Exploitation?”

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