CHRISTINE O'DONNELL ADVERTISES ENDORSEMENT FROM BIGOT BLOGGER PAMELA GELLER - TOP By Alex Pareene, Salon, com 10/20/10
Below, a screenshot of Delaware's Republican nominee for U.S. Senate Christine O'Donnell's "endorsements" page. We've got Mitt Romney, Jim DeMint, the NRA, Sarah Palin, the Tea Parties -- oh, and look at that: Down near the bottom (right above longtime socialite and fervent supporter of the Afghanistan Mujahideen Joanne Herring) is "Atlas Shrugs" blogger Pamela Geller.
Pamela Geller, the main instigator in this summer's anti-mosque frenzy, is a bigoted conspiracy theorist. She's a liar and probably slightly insane. She regularly compares Muslims to Nazis. Geller's called Barack Obama's birth certificate a forgery, and Obama a Muslim. She published a lengthy "investigation" on her site in 2008 claiming that Obama's father was actually Malcolm X. And Charles Johnson recently documented her many ties to far-right neo-fascist movements in Europe. Johnson has examples of Geller defending white supremacists and even genocidal war criminals. (More)
NAACP REPORT ON TEA PARTY EXTREMISM SLAMS PAM GELLER - TOP
Geller maintains a tight-knit trio of organizational fronts: Atlas Shrugs, SIOA (Stop Islamization of America), and the Freedom Defense Initiative. All are listed as official "partner" organizations of the ResistNet Tea Party faction. She has appeared on the ResistNet radio program that was heavily promoted by ResistNet leader Darla Dawald.
With leaders like Geller, it is not surprising to find language on a ResistNet Tea Party website that denigrates an entire grouping of people because of their faith. "We are at a point of having to take a stand against all Muslims. There is no good or bad Muslim. There is [sic] only Muslims and they are embedded in our government, military and other offices...What more must we wait for to take back this country of ours..."
Geller, like many Tea Partiers is also a birther. In addition to claiming that Obama's birth certificate is a "forgery," she has called President Obama a "third worlder and a coward" who's "appeas[ing] his Islamic overlords." She has perpetuated the lie that President Obama is Muslim. Geller has referred to Obama as "The Muslim president." 261 Media Matters for America documented that Geller's blog contains 267 posts tagged, "Muslim in the White House?" She's gone as far as to seriously make the argument that Barack Obama is the illegitimate child of Malcolm X.
Among the many inflammatory statements Geller has posted on her blog, Atlas Shrugs, she has written that: "It is increasingly clear that the most divisive President in history is itching for a civil war. And at the rate he is going, he is going to get one — if he continues to ignore the will of the American people."
DN EDITORIAL: CONTROVERSY OVER HALAL SOUP IS NUTS - TOP By Philadelphia Daily News, 10/20/10
So now the terrorists win if a Canadian Muslim can buy a can of tomato soup.
Conservative bloggers are calling for a boycott of Camden-based Campbell Soup Co. because it now produces (in Canada, not here) 15 varieties of soup that have been certified halal - that is, conforming with Muslim dietary laws.
It's yet another alarming development in the so- far-successful political strategy of exploiting ignorance and fear of Islam. It joins last summer's roiling controversy over a proposed Islamic cultural center a few New York blocks from Ground Zero and the crazy Florida minister's threat to publicly burn a Quran. In recent weeks, various politicians have pronounced warnings that Americans are in grave danger of being subject to sharia law.
Don't assume these "issues" are confined to the conservative fringe. The soup boycott is being led Pam Geller, the conservative blogger with rabid anti-Islam views who managed to gin up the New York mosque controversy with the aid of Rupert Murdoch's New York Post and Fox News.
Geller claims she's not against halal soups but against the organization that certifies them, the Islamic Society of North America, because of its alleged ties to Hamas. Just like the smears of the Muslim leaders behind the Islamic Center, this charge is bogus: The ISNA has been certifying halal foods since 1988, has denied ties to Hamas and has condemned extremism and violence. Besides, the 4,005 "friends" of the boycott's Facebook page know exactly what this is about, some leaving comments and links directed not at ISNA but at Muslims and Islam. (More)
GROUP LAUNCHES MEDIA BLITZ IN OKLAHOMA FOR ANTI-SHARIAH BALLOT INITIATIVE -TOP By Stephen Clark, FOX News, 10/20/10
A group vowing to fight "Islamofascism" has launched a media blitz in Oklahoma supporting a state constitutional amendment that would prohibit the courts from considering Islamic or other international law when ruling on cases in Sooner State courtrooms.
The campaign by Act! For America, founded by Lebanese American journalist Brigitte Gabriel, includes a radio ad that began airing Monday, opinion articles and robo-calls from former CIA director and Tulsa native James Woolsey urging residents to vote for the ballot initiative.
The group says the constitutional amendment will prevent the takeover of Oklahoma by Islamic extremists who want to undo America from the inside out.
"We want to make sure that the people in Oklahoma are educated about what Shariah law is all about and its ramifications," Gabriel, president and CEO of the group, told FoxNews.com. "We're not taking any chances with this initiative passing marginally. We hope it passes with great victory."
But opponents say the initiative is the latest example of Muslims being unfairly targeted and could discourage foreign companies from doing business in the state if they believe international agreements won't be honored in court.
"We take a stand in opposition to the proposed amendment," said Muneer Awad, executive director of the Oklahoma branch of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR). He added that Shariah law taking effect in the United States is constitutionally impossible.
"It's ridiculous that anyone would suggest it would happen," he told FoxNews.com "Our Constitution would not allow any religious law to supersede the existing laws."
Awad also said the initiative could threaten the 14,000 international companies in the state.
"What agreements will they want to have if they know they won't be enforced," Awad said. (More)
BACKGROUNDER: BRIGITTE GABRIEL AND ACT! FOR AMERICA - TOP
ACT! for America leader Brigitte Gabriel claims an American Muslim "cannot be a loyal citizen" and that Islam is the "real enemy." She once told the Australian Jewish News: "Every practicing Muslim is a radical Muslim." She also claimed that "Islamo-fascism is a politically-correct word...it's the vehicle for Islam...Islam is the problem."
When asked whether Americans should "resist Muslims who want to seek political office in this nation," Gabriel said: "Absolutely. If a Muslim who has -- who is -- a practicing Muslim who believes the word of the Koran to be the word of Allah, who abides by Islam, who goes to mosque and prays every Friday, who prays five times a day -- this practicing Muslim, who believes in the teachings of the Koran, cannot be a loyal citizen to the United States of America."
Gabriel stated: "America and the West are doomed to failure in this war unless they stand up and identify the real enemy: Islam."
Along with her stated desire to have Muslims barred from public office, Gabriel has also claimed that Arabs "have no soul" and that Muslims worship "something they call 'Allah,' which is very different from the God we believe [in]."
Earlier this year, a person staffing an ACT! for America information table in Florida was caught on video bragging that he desecrated the Quran, Islam's revealed text, and urinates in the washing stations Muslims use to perform their ritual ablutions (wudu) for prayer.
That person states: "Their foot baths, I love pissing in them...The Quran makes worthless toilet paper. It just kind of scratches my a** a little bit...To me, I like desecrating their [Muslims'] holy stuff."
CAIR-PA: MUSLIM FIRED FOR WEARING HEADSCARF IS REINSTATED - TOP By Sam Wood, The Philadelphia Inquirer, 10/20/10
A Muslim saleswoman from Philadelphia, who was fired from her job for refusing to remove her religious head scarf, was reinstated Tuesday and will be reimbursed for her lost wages.
Khadijah Campbell, 23, moved to Dover, Del., when her husband was accepted to graduate school. On Oct. 6, she filled out an application at the Dover store of Bare Feet Shoes, the Montgomery County-based retailer. She interviewed wearing her hijab and was hired on the spot, she said.
On Oct. 7, her first day of work, a district manager visited the Dover store and ordered her to remove the scarf or work in the store's stockroom. She told the manager that she wore the scarf for religious reasons. He told her the chain did not allow anyone to display their religion and then dismissed her in front of the other workers, said Moein Khawaja, executive director for the Pennsylvania chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
On Monday, CAIR filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. On Tuesday, Campbell was reinstated and the district manager who fired her was suspended, Khawaja said. (More)
A Week of Dialogue is a nationwide initiative launched by American Muslim leadersdesigned to promote greater understanding between Muslims and people of all faiths and backgrounds. With a formal launch on October 17th, A Week of Dialogue is an open invitation to concerned citizens, students, faith, and community leaders to conduct a dialogue at their house of worship, university, or community organization. The goal of the project is to allay some of the negative tensions in civil society caused from the Park51 controversy. Each dialogue event recives a complimentary DVD produced by Unity Productions Foundation, and participants recieve dialogue guides, an open house toolkit, and publicity support.
JAMAICA, New York (October 19, 2010) – In a press release issued today, the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) appealed to American Muslim community leaders and Imams to raise awareness about hunger in the United States.
The request comes during ICNA's National Campaign Against Hunger, a month-long campaign of advocacy, awareness and service launched on October 1st to battle the effects of hunger across the country.
Naeem Baig, Executive Director of the ICNA Council for Social Justice, requested Imams to use Friday sermons to educate the public on the lack of food security in the nation. Statistics show that 13 million households (14.6%) struggle for food in the United Statesthe highest level of hunger since the U.S. Department of Agriculture first began measuring food security in 1995.
"Hunger and poverty have plagued our society for years, recently becoming even more pronounced due to the flailing state of our economy," said Baig. "These matters must be tackled with urgency, yet little progress has been made to overcome them. It is our duty as leaders, lecturers and Imams to raise awareness about the effects of hunger in the United States. We encourage you to use your venue to educate the public on and promote action against hunger." A sermon is available for reference on the campaign's website, www.icna.org/hunger.
ICNA has declared October 21, 2010 as "Skip a Lunch Day", and is requesting people todonate the cost of one lunch to ICNA Relief's feeding program or to any charity of their choice.
The Islamic Circle of North America is a leading American Muslim organization dedicated to the betterment of society through the promotion of Islamic values. Since 1968, ICNA has worked to build relations between communities by devoting itself to education, outreach, social services and relief efforts.
Press Contact: Naeem Baig Vice President for Public Affairs Islamic Circle of North America E-mail: PR@icna.us Office: (718) 658-1199 Extension: 102 Cell: (917) 202-2118
CAIR: FIRST ALASKAN MOSQUE COMING TO ANCHORAGE - TOP By Jackie Bartz Channel 2 News, 10/19/10
A new religious site comes to Alaska as the Anchorage Muslim community broke ground on the state's first mosque this weekend...
According to the Council on American-Islamic Relations Executive Director Nihad Awad, between 2,000 and 3,000 Muslims currently live in the Anchorage area.
"I think the spirit of Alaskans will show the spirit of diversity and appreciating the contribution of American Muslims in Alaska. I was up there visiting for a few days. I was overwhelmed by the generosity, the friendship of people in the community," said Awad. (More)
NY: BUILDINGS DEPT. PUTS SHEEPSHEAD BAY MOSQUE PLAN ON HOLD FOR EXTRA REVIEW - TOP By Mike McLaughlin, New York Daily News, 10/20/10
City officials have put the brakes on a controversial project to build a mosque in Sheepshead Bay - ordering a review the developer charged was sparked by opponents.
Department of Buildings officials demanded the audit on Friday, two days after giving the Voorhies Ave. project a thumbs up.
"We feel sad and disappointed that they've succumbed to pressure from the opposition," said Allowey Ahmed, owner of the lot where he wants to build a three-story mosque and community center.
Ahmed insisted inspectors won't find anything wrong with the plans. "We're doing it according to code."
A DOB spokeswoman said officials met with mosque officials yesterday and questioned them about its occupancy to see if other permits are required. Officials also found sloppy paperwork, she said.
"The DOB is asking the applicant to clarify some issues on the plans, which can be easily rectified," said spokeswoman Carly Sullivan. "Once the issues are addressed, permits can be issued." (More)
NY: MOSQUES OPEN THEIR DOORS FOR A 'WEEK OF DIALOGUE' - TOP By Anne Barnard, The New York Times, 10/19/10
Muslim organizations have kicked off a "week of dialogue" and mosque open houses across the United States, encouraging their members to invite neighbors and non-Muslim friends to attend Muslim prayers and question-and-answer sessions at mosques, and, in turn, to explore churches, synagogues and other houses of worship.
The aim is to counter "bigotry and Islamophobia" and to "correct the perception of Islam and Muslims in America," Imam Al-Amin Abdul Latif, president of the Islamic Leadership Council of New York, an umbrella group of mosques and Islamic organizations in the city, said in a statement Monday.
By getting to know each other better, the organizers said, Muslims and non-Muslims can fight a growing and "un-American" hostility to Muslims that has taken many forms, including opposition to the construction of mosques and Muslim centers from Lower Manhattan to Tennessee to California.
A recent New York Times poll found that 75 percent of New Yorkers had never visited a mosque, and that those who had, or had a close Muslim friend, were more likely to support the Muslim center planned near ground zero.
The events began on Sunday with an interfaith gathering on the West Side involving a mosque, a church and a synagogue, with the participation of the American Society for Muslim Advancement, run by Daisy Khan, the wife of the imam involved in planning Park51, the Muslim center near ground zero. (More)
MICHAEL ENRIGHT, STUDENT CHARGED WITH STABBING MUSLIM CABBIE, RELEASED ON $500,000 BAIL - TOP By Melissa Grace, New York Daily News, 10/19/10
A slobbering drunk film student charged with slashing a Muslim cabbie was released on $500,000 bond Tuesday and ordered to stay away from booze.
Michael Enright, 21, had been in jail since the shocking incident on Aug. 25 when cops say he shouted, "This is your checkpoint!" before slashing cabbie Ahmed Sharif's throat in a drunken rage.
Enright walked out of Manhattan Supreme Court with his arm on his mom's shoulder and an electronic monitoring device around his ankle. He said nothing.
Judge Richard Carruthers agreed to allow Cathy Enright to put her Putnam County home in Brewster down as collateral to bondsman Ira Judelson on several conditions.
"The defendant is not to go to any bar or club that serves alcoholic beverages," Carruthers said.
And he ordered Michael Enright to undergo rehab and set an 8 p.m. curfew. Enright also cannot travel outside of New York and had to surrender his passport. (More)
MUSLIM CONSUMER CONFERENCE TO HIGHLIGHT CONTRIBUTIONS TO U.S. ECONOMY -TOP By Jennifer Amato, North South Brunswick Sentinel, 10/20/10
Muslim professionals, entrepreneurs, and media and marketing executives will meet to share their experiences during the second annual Muslim Consumer Conference on Oct. 30...
The objective of the conference is to create an awareness of Muslim consumers, their buying power and their presence in mainstream media and the advertising industry, and in turn influence companies and Muslim entrepreneurs to develop products and services for Muslims, based on Islamic principles.
"In the late '90s, much was written about the Hispanic market, and it was lost in the mainstream media without any action until early 2000," said Faisal Masood, who founded the conference with his wife, Sabiha Ansari. "At this time the ethnic market started to reach a sizable opportunity for companies to target, and today this market stands at $1.4 trillion. American Muslim consumers today stand at $170 billion, according to JWT, one of the largest advertising agencies, and this is expected to grow rapidly as population expands and younger Muslims start working."
Masood, of North Brunswick, is also the founder of MuslimLink.org, a social media platform that connects Muslim professionals, businesses and organizations. He decided to hold the conference last year after reading a 2007 New York Times article that mentioned that Muslims spend $170 billion in America and that the American Muslim market is highly educated and fast growing. (More)
'OBAMA DROPS INDIA TEMPLE VISIT OVER HEADSCARF FEAR' - TOP By American Free Press, 10/20/10
President Barack Obama has cancelled a visit to a Sikh temple in India, sources said Wednesday, over apparent concerns that photos of him with his head covered would revive claims he is a Muslim.
During his state visit to India early next month, Obama was scheduled to tour the Golden Temple in Amritsar -- Sikhism's holiest shrine -- where he would be required to cover his head in line with the religion's practices.
But aides feared images of him with a traditional scarf over his head could be used by opponents in the United States to portray him as a closet Muslim.
"He will not be going to Amritsar now," a diplomatic official in New Delhi, who declined to be named, told AFP. "The headscarf is one issue and there were other logistical issues that led to the cancellation."
The Indian foreign ministry said Obama's tour of the Golden Temple had been prepared by an advance team of US diplomats.
"We provided them with all the support and guidance they needed but now it is for US officials to decide whether Obama should go to the temple or not," an official at the ministry told AFP.
Sikhs in Amritsar, in India's northern state of Punjab, expressed disappointment.
"We do expect people to cover their heads. Obama is welcome inside the temple. He could just wear a cap," said Gurubachan Singh, a senior official from the Golden Temple management trust. (More)