Stop Islamophobia, British Jew says


This video says about itself:

Islamophobia and Antisemitism: Same message, different minority.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

This Jewish man gave a powerful reminder of why any bigotry is so very dangerous

Posted 4 hours ago by Louis Doré

James O’Brien was moved by a letter from a man of Jewish ancestry on Holocaust Memorial Day, which called for greater focus on the experience of Muslims in the UK.

The listener, Josh, emailed the LBC presenter earlier this week to deliver the following message, in the wake of a sharp rise in Islamophobic attacks in recent months:

“I just wanted to say that although I am not a religious man I have a strong Jewish heritage. Today being the 71st anniversary of the Holocaust, which is very personal to me for obvious reasons, I think we really need to make the link as to how Muslims are being subjected daily to such lazy prejudices, just as my ancestors were, all those years ago.

Josh argued that “Jews, more than anyone, need to stand up for the Muslim community”, by positioning themselves against the “vile rubbish” in the press and leaving the “Middle East nonsense to one side for the moment”.

We need to remember that not long ago it was us who were on the receiving end of this treatment, and we all know where that ended up.

He detailed how his family had emigrated from Russia during the pogroms in the early 20th century and how, during their time living in East London, they frequently saw signs reading “No dogs, No Irish, No Jews”.

It feels like we’re receding into a society that is also happy to say ‘No Muslims’. Just look at what is happening in the states with that lunatic Donald Trump. We simply cannot tolerate this.

That’s all I wanted to say. Keep the peace.

A notably moved O’Brien responded to the message by saying:

“On today of all days I am happy to provide you with an opportunity to bring that message to a slightly wider audience, in the probably naive hope that some people might listen.”

TRACKING ISLAMOPHOBIA IN THE U.S. “A comprehensive list of discriminatory acts against American Muslims might be impossible, but The Huffington Post will document this deplorable wave of hate for all of 2016 using news reports and firsthand accounts.The breadth and severity of Islamophobia in America can no longer go unnoticed. Enough is enough.” [Christopher Mathias and Rowaida Abdelaziz, HuffPost]

Islamophobia Awards ceremony soon


This video from Britain says about itself:

Theresa May wins 2015 Islamophobia Award

10 March 2015

Centred around a gala dinner, the Islamic Human RIghts comission organise their yearly Islamophobia awards through comedy while simultaneously addressing a serious and significant issue in a creative manner.

This year the awards have been split into four separate categories: UK, International, News Media and Film/Book/TV Series. Nominees were submitted by the general public.

The list included UKIP leader Nigel Farage, Maajid Nawaz, the Metropolitan Police, Birckbeck university and others.

And despite his yearly address to all Muslims in the UK during Eid, the Prime minister was on the list of Islamophobes nominees too.

By Joana Ramiro in Britain:

PM leads shortlist for Islamophobia gongs

Wednesday 27th January 2016

Loudmouth Hopkins also in with a shout

DAVID CAMERON, Katie Hopkins and the Daily Mail are all up for a gong at this year’s Islamophobia Awards, organisers announced yesterday.

The Prime Minister is a previous winner of the prize, receiving it last year for his “overall Islamophobic” rhetoric.

Other contenders for recognition at the March 5 gala dinner include Home Secretary Theresa May in the “UK” category, US tycoon and potential presidential candidate Donald Trump in the “international” category and BBC One’s sitcom Citizen Khan in the “movie/book/TV series” category.

Ms Hopkins, who is up against the Prime Minister, Ms May and Ukip MEP David Coburn, reacted to her nomination with a tweet reading: “I’ll be there to accept it in person. I’ve just the outfit. Will I have to sit at the back?”

Attached to her message was a picture of three women in dark blue burkas.The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC), which organises the annual event, said the awards aim “to subvert Islamophobia through comedy and revue, while simultaneously addressing a serious and significant issue in a creative manner.”

Nominations are made by the public and often refer to incidents where prejudice towards Muslims was blatant.

This year, Channel 4 News’s Cathy Newman has been nominated in the “news and print” section of the awards after lying about being “ushered out” of a south London mosque.

An IHRC spokeswoman told the Star: “Through the Islamophobia Awards we challenge that stereotype that Muslims have no sense of humour and are always angry.

“It is sure to be an entertaining evening of mockery, but also one where we’ll shed light on serious issues.”

Mr Trump recently called for all Muslims to be banned from entering the US, leading to him being mocked in Parliament.

10-year-old makes spelling mistake, police considers him ‘terrorist’


This video from England says about itself:

20 January 2016

Relative speaks out after a Muslim boy aged 10 was probed for ‘terrorist house’ spelling error during school.

In David Cameron‘s Britain today, journalism, even BBC journalism, may be considered ‘terrorism’.

In the USA, 18-month-old baby girls may get on a no fly list as supposed ‘terrorists’. Police may arrest a Muslim teenage inventor as a ‘terrorist’ for inventing a clock. In the Netherlands, police may consider a Muslim teenager to be a ‘terrorist’ for being homeless.

Now, police in David Cameron‘s England have discovered a new ‘proof’ of terrorism: making a spelling mistake.

From the BBC:

Muslim boy, 10, probed for ‘terrorist house’ spelling error

By Rahila Bano, BBC Asian Network

20 January 2016

A 10-year-old Muslim boy who mistakenly wrote that he lived in a “terrorist house” during an English lesson at school has been investigated by police.

The pupil, who attends a primary school in Lancashire, meant to say he lived in a “terraced house”.

The boy was interviewed by Lancashire Police at his home the next day and the family laptop was examined.

Teachers have been legally obliged to report any suspected extremist behaviour to police since July.

The boy’s family said they were left shocked by the 7 December incident and want both the school and police to apologise.

‘He’s now scared’

In order to protect the boy’s identity, the BBC is not naming his cousin, who said she initially thought it was all a “joke”.

“You can imagine it happening to a 30-year-old man, but not to a young child,” she said. “If the teacher had any concerns it should have been about his spelling.

“They shouldn’t be putting a child through this.

“He’s now scared of writing, using his imagination.”

The 2015 Counter Terrorism and Security Act places a statutory duty on schools and colleges to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.

Critics argue teachers are overreacting for fear of breaking the law, rather than using their common sense.

Miqdaad Versi, assistant secretary-general of the Muslim Council of Britain, the UK’s largest umbrella group for Islamic associations, said he was aware of dozens of cases similar to that of the schoolboy.

“There are huge concerns that individuals going about their daily life are being seen through the lens of security and are being seen as potential terrorists rather than students,” he said.

“This is a natural consequence of the extension of the ‘Prevent Duty’ to schools.”

The Home Office does not publish data for the number of referrals made to Channel, the de-radicalisation programme.

However, in the year to the end of October, 1,355 people aged under 18 were referred to it, compared with 466 in the previous 12 months.

Lancashire Police said in a statement: “This was reported to the police but was dealt with by a joint visit by a PC from the division and social services, not by anyone from Prevent.

“There were not thought to be any areas for concern and no further action was required by any agency.”

The school said it was unable to comment because it was investigating a complaint made about the incident.

Britain’s David Cameron bullies Muslim women


This video from Britain says about itself:

Zahra Al-Alawi’s response to Prime Minister David Cameron‘s statement

18 January 2016

Zahra Al-Alawis response to Prime Minister David Cameron

On Thursday 14th January 2016 Zahra Al-Alawi along with other influential British Muslim women attended a meeting with Prime Minister David Cameron at 10 Downing Street.

On Monday 18th January 2016 the Prime Minister made a statement that Muslim women should learn English so that they can integrate into society in response to some families and communities who speak no or little English to prevent radicalisation.

By Lamiat Sabin in Britain:

PM threatens Muslim women

Tuesday 19th January 2016

Poor English language skills make women ‘more susceptible’ to Isis, claims Esol-slashing Cameron

A “LAZY, misguided and sloppy” David Cameron threatened yesterday to deport Muslim women who don’t improve their English, claiming they were easy prey for Islamic State (Isis) extremism.

The Prime Minister limply stated there was no “causal connection” between language and terrorism before warning that the 40,000 women in Britain who do not speak English — and 190,000 whose English is very poor — are “more susceptible” to the group’s message.

Women arriving in Britain on spousal visas are expected to have English skills at A1 level, equivalent to a native speaker starting primary school, but would need to reach A2 level within two-and-a-half years under his proposals.

Those who fail “can’t guarantee [they] will be able to stay.”

He announced a new £20 million fund in England to boost Muslim women’s language skills — less than six months after slashing £45m from the Esol (English for speakers of other languages) budget.

The cuts have ended the very classes that are designed to help people improve their English, the University and College Union (UCU) said.

Esol has already had its funding for non-apprenticeship courses cut by 40 per cent since 2009.

UCU general secretary Sally Hunt said: “The Prime Minister’s strong words on the importance of learning English simply do not fit with his actions.

“His government has repeatedly cut funding to help foreign language speakers learn English and this money, although welcome, does not go far enough.

“Politicians need to back that rhetoric up with proper funding.”

Mr Cameron visited a project for Bangladeshi women in Leeds to promote his new plans — but reporters were banned from speaking to them, complaining the PM had set up a “propaganda” trip.

Mr Cameron also faced backlash from Islamic groups and former Tory minister Baroness Warsi for singling out Muslim women.

Lady Warsi, the Tories’ first female Muslim cabinet minister, attacked her party leader for his “lazy, misguided, sloppy linking” of language skills and extremism.

She told BBC Radio 4 that his threats of deportation was “a very unusual way of empowering and emboldening women.”

Ramadhan Foundation head Mohammed Shafiq accused Mr Cameron of once again using British Muslims as “a political football to score cheap points to appear tough.”

And Muslim Council of Britain secretary-general Shuja Shafi said Mr Cameron’s aim for better integration “falls at the first hurdle” if he has to bully Muslim women to drive his ideology.

Shadow home secretary Andy Burnham said: “His clumsy and simplistic approach to challenging extremism is unfairly stigmatising a whole community.

“There is a real danger that it could end up driving further radicalisation rather than tackling it.”

ATTEMPTS to link a lack of fluency in English with susceptibility to propaganda from the Isis death cult betray a fixation with scapegoat-seeking rather than community integration. David Cameron takes care to admit that there is no “causal link,” but he knows that conjoining the two in a speech will encourage people to believe that there is: here.

United States professor witch-hunted for opposing Islamophobia


This video from the USA says about itself:

7 December 2015

Larycia Hawkins is a tenured Christian professor at Illinois Wheaton College. She was recently placed on administrative leave after expressing her belief that Christians and Muslims worship the same god. Cenk Uygur, host of the The Young Turks, breaks it down.

By Joe Williams in the USA:

Illinois professor fired for expressing sympathy for Muslims

18 January 2016

In a craven capitulation to anti-Muslim agitation, Wheaton College has begun termination proceedings against Dr. Larycia Hawkins, a tenured professor who attracted national attention in December by wearing a hijab during the Christian Advent period to show solidarity with Muslims.

Explaining on social media her decision to don the Islamic garb, Hawkins wrote, “I stand in religious solidarity with Muslims because they, like me, a Christian, are people of the book. And as Pope Francis stated last week, we worship the same God .… As part of my Advent Worship, I will wear the hijab to work at Wheaton College, to play in Chi-town [Chicago], in the airport and on the airplane to my home state that initiated one of the first anti-Sharia laws (read: unconstitutional and Islamophobic), and at church.”

Wheaton is a private evangelical Christian college located 25 miles west of Chicago. The college was founded by abolitionist opponents of slavery in 1860.

In response to Hawkins’ actions, the college released a statement to the media declaring that the “theological implications” of Hawkins’s claim violates the Wheaton College “Statement of Faith,” which all students and faculty are required to sign.

On December 15, four days after she posted her statement, Provost Stanton Jones presented Hawkins with a document accusing her of “blasphemy,” and Hawkins was placed on paid administrative leave. On December 17, Hawkins submitted a four page theological statement re-affirming her commitment to the Statement of Faith.

College officials are nevertheless moving forward with procedures to terminate Hawkins. A committee of nine tenured Wheaton professors is expected to arrive at a decision within several weeks about Hawkins’s future employment at the college. College president Phillip Ryken will then refer the professors’ recommendation to Wheaton’s Board of Trustees for a final decision.

Hawkins has received support from students and colleagues, who have denounced the administration’s justifications for her termination. On January 11, the first day of the spring semester, over 100 students staged a protest outside the school’s main chapel. Students are also continuing a sit-in, begun last semester when Hawkins was put on leave, outside the offices of Jones and Ryken.

This video from the USA says about itself:

Rally in support of Dr. Larycia Hawkins (Complete)

6 January 2016

Dr. Larycia Hawkins provides information regarding the notification she received from Wheaton College moving to terminate her tenure and employment from the evangelical institution. The disciplinary action comes as Dr. Hawkins maintains Christian support for the Muslim community amidst the ongoing anti-Muslim climate.

The Provost’s notification also cites as the basis for seeking her termination that Dr. Hawkins’ made an “unqualified assertion of religious solidarity with Muslims and Jews.”

Background:

On December 10, 2015, Dr. Hawkins posted a message on Facebook expressing solidarity with her brothers and sisters of the Muslim faith.

On December 15, 2015, Dr. Hawkins was placed on administrative leave by Wheaton College, and relieved of all teaching and programmatic duties for the Spring 2016 semester.

Dr. Hawkins continued her Christian act of embodied solidarity, wearing the hijab, through Advent, leading up to Christmas.

On January 4, 2016, Dr. Hawkins received an email notification of the Provost’s Recommendation to Initiate Termination.

The Joe Williams article continues:

One participant, senior Annika Bouwsma, told the Wheaton Daily Herald, “I don’t think there’s been enough transparency and I don’t think that she (Hawkins) deserves termination or leave.” Protest leader Joshua Mangis said he is hopeful that the college will reconcile with Hawkins, adding, “There’s definitely an atmosphere on campus just that this is an important thing…A lot of professors are opening class with a statement about it and encouraging students to read up on it.” One student held a sign reading “Academic rigor = academic freedom.”

A group of faculty has also registered a protest of the administration’s decision, declining to take part in a mandatory prayer service at Bedman Chapel, choosing to hold an alternative service in a nearby chapel instead. Gary Burge, professor of New Testament Studies at Wheaton, told Time, “I have seen no theological argument from the college that would deem her commitments unacceptable…[Hers] is a clear, compelling affirmation of what we believe in Wheaton’s Statement of Faith.”

Benjamin L. Corey, writing for the liberal Christian news site Patheos, observed that “the glue that holds fundamentalism together is the agreement upon a common enemy to fight, and Dr. Hawkins has rejected the notion that Muslims are the common enemy.”

Internal emails from the college administration appear to confirm that the move against Dr. Hawkins is a concession to the anti-Muslim hysteria that is being whipped up by the political establishment and the media. In one email, Jones acknowledged that Hawkins’ statement was “innocuous,” but complained, “Articles are already being written in a variety of news sources, and the media are pounding on our door asking for comments about our faculty who are endorsing Islam.” In another email, he wrote that “her theological comments are being taken up as an endorsement of Islam.”

This episode at Wheaton College is part of a broader trend on college campuses of chilling and suppressing dissent. In October, George Washington University student Ramie Abounaja was forced by police to remove a Palestinian flag he had hung from his dorm window. The school was unable to cite any regulation he had violated and eventually apologized under threat of legal action from a Palestinian civil rights organization.

In 2012, Wheaton College joined a number of other religious institutions in a lawsuit against the Obama administration over the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that health insurance for employees or students include contraceptive coverage. The Obama administration had decided in February of that year to allow religious institutions to exempt themselves from the requirement, instead requiring insurance companies to cover the expense.

All that an institution would have had to do under the Obama administration’s regulations was to fill out a two-page form and submit it to the government. Wheaton argued that this requirement was unduly burdensome and violated the college’s religious freedom. In Wheaton College v. Burwell (2014), the US Supreme Court decided in favor of Wheaton College.

The college has since discontinued health coverage for students altogether.

Donald Trump expels peaceful silent Muslim woman from meeting


This video, recorded in South Carolina in the USA, says about itself:

Trump urged to apologise after Muslim ejected from campaign rally

56-year-old Rose Hamid stood in silence as the rest of the crowd sat at the Trump rally

January 10, 2016

US Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump is being urged to apologise to a Muslim protester who was forcibly removed from one of his campaign rallies.

The Washington Post in the USA writes about a time, over a century ago, when United States Republican politicians did not yet, contrary to Trump, use hired bouncer force to kick people disagreeing with them verbally out of meetings. Let alone doing that to people saying nothing, but just standing silently and peacefully. Quote:

Abraham Lincoln was heckled. As historian Garry Wills has recounted, Lincoln once told an unruly crowd that he didn’t like speaking off the cuff because “in my position, it is somewhat important that I should not say any foolish thing.” To which a heckler shot back: “If you can help it.” The president was quick on his feet: “It very often happens,” he said, “that the only way to help it is to say nothing at all.”

But the next night, Lincoln said a few words the world would long remember. That crowd had gathered for the dedication of a cemetery in Gettysburg.

So, Abraham Lincoln in the middle of the bloody United States civil war, under martial law, did not tell any bouncers to forcible remove people with opposing views from his meeting, but replied wittily.

While on the other hand, Donald Trump, when heckled in Burlington, Vermont, the hometown of presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, told his ‘security’ men on 7 January 2016 about a political opponent:

Take him out. …

Which is mafia slang for killing someone.

Donald Trump walks out over questions about his mafia connections during BBC Panorama interview: here.

Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump said Tuesday that the United States should “take out” the family members of terrorists in the effort to fight ISIS: here. And maybe next, ‘take out’ next door neighbours, ‘take out’ people with vaguely similarly sounding names, etc.

Trump‘s Burlington quote continues:

Don’t give him his coat! Keep his coat. Confiscate his coat. You know it’s about 10 degrees below zero outside … Keep his coat. Tell him we’ll send it to him in a couple weeks.”

From the Washington Post in the USA:

Muslim woman gets kicked out of Trump rally — for protesting silently

By Jenna Johnson

January 9 at 8:46 AM

ROCK HILL, S.C. — As Donald Trump questioned the motives of Syrian refugees at a Friday night rally, saying they “probably are ISIS,” a woman sitting in the stands of the sports arena behind him silently stood. She was wearing a white hijab and a blue T-shirt that read: “Salam, I come in peace.”

Trump kept speaking, but soon the crowd erupted, holding up their campaign signs and chanting: “Trump! Trump! Trump!” That was the formal signal for security to remove her from the rally — even though she stood quietly, not saying anything. She was joined by several other protesters, all wearing yellow eight-pointed stars, reminiscent of the six-pointed stars Jews were forced by the Nazis to wear on their clothing during the Holocaust. On the eight-pointed stars, a common symbol in the Islamic world, was this message: “Stop Islamophobia.”

The woman is Rose Hamid, a 56-year-old flight attendant who is Muslim, according to CNN. After being escorted out by security officers and campaign representatives, Hamid told CNN in an interview that some of the Trump supporters sitting near her were kind and apologized as she was led out. But she said others accused her of having a bomb or shouted “Get out!”

“This demonstrates how when you start dehumanizing the other, it can turn people into very hateful, ugly people,” Hamid told CNN. “It needs to be known.”

Hamid was one of a handful of protesters removed from the rally at the Winthrop Coliseum in this college town in northern South Carolina. Trump’s spokeswoman and campaign manager have yet to respond to a request for comment.

Before the rally began, the crowd was told that no protesting of any sort would be allowed, and that protesters needed to stay in a free-speech space outside the venue. Some of Trump‘s supporters argue that though the woman did not shout or cause a disturbance, wearing the star on her shirt and standing while others were sitting was fair grounds to be asked to leave.

Last year, Trump announced that if he becomes president, he will impose a temporary ban on allowing most Muslims from entering the country. He has also called for heavy surveillance of mosques, and said that he’s open to the idea of closing mosques or creating a database of some Muslims in the United States.

At the rally on Friday night, Trump told a crowd of about 7,000 that the United States should not allow Syrian refugees into the country, and he criticized President Obama for not using the term “radical Islamic terrorism.” …

Later that night, the Council on American-Islamic Relations called on Trump to publicly apologize to Hamid and to meet with American Muslim leaders to discuss how his rhetoric has sparked an “anti-Muslim hysteria.”

“The image of a Muslim woman being abused and ejected from a political rally sends a chilling message to American Muslims and to all those who value our nation’s traditions of religious diversity and civic participation,” said Nihad Awad, the council’s national executive director. “Donald Trump should issue a public apology to the Muslim woman kicked out of his rally and make a clear statement that American Muslims are welcome as fellow citizens and as participants in the nation’s political process.”

Charlie Hebdo cartoonist against Islamophobia, bombing Syria


This video from the USA says about itself:

Peaceful Mosques Terrorized By Right Wing Extremists

16 November 2015

After the shootings and terrorism in Paris there’s been an outpouring of support in the US for our friends in France. However, there have also been some not so pleasant responses that have led to terroristic threats on mosques.

Dutch cartoonist Willem Holtrop lives in France. He draws for Charlie Hebdo weekly, and is one of the survivors of the bloody attack on its office.

Translated from an interview with him, today by Dutch NOS TV:

He doubts strongly that it [the violence] has to do with religion. He has firsthand experience of how ordinary Muslims suffer from the radicalism of a minority. … “Normal Muslims say those guys have not understood anything about Islam. They are in trouble, they are continually asked to justify themselves. ‘This is not us’. Of course it is not them. They feel increasingly like being suspected. I feel very sorry for those people.”

“Among us on the island [in Brittany where Holtrop lives] lives a builder who has the same name as one of those killers,” he continues. “He has had enough of seeing his name constantly on television. They can believe whatever they want, but they should not kill us. The ordinary Arab grocer around the corner is a friend.” …

He had his doubts when French President Hollande immediately uttered the word war and the Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte followed him in that. “I think that’s a strong word. And then immediately bombing Syria, I do not really like that. Half of the victims are usually innocent people. It just makes more evil people in the world. You cannot bomb the inspiration for terrorism away.”

Were French intelligence forces complicit in the Charlie Hebdo attacks? Here.