It should come as no surprise to any of you when I write that Muslim Americans and the Muslim community are facing a number of great challenges today
- Discrimination in the workplace by both our government and private companies takes a heavy toll upon Muslims seeking employment or promotion.
- Islam is repeatedly attacked as a religion of hate and violence, incompatible with democracy, with every single Muslim portrayed as a potential security threat. Millions of dollars are spent by a well-funded Islamophobic network to broadcast this bigotry across the land.
- Our beloved children, those among us least able to defend themselves, are bullied at school simply because they are Muslims. The long-term effects of bullying can be devastating.
- Finally, our own government, to which we have pledged allegiance, not only singles out Muslim travelers for discriminatory treatment, but engages in questionably-legal acts of surveillance, intimidation, and entrapment.
No single individual can overcome and change these hardships by themselves. As with other persecuted groups in American history who have come together to form organizations that gave voice to the voiceless, some two decades ago Muslim Americans found that they too needed an organized effort to defend their interests and protect their rights. That need was transformed into the Council on American Islamic Relations, and eight years ago CAIR-Philadelphia was born. CAIR’s goals are to ensure our generation and future generations do not experience the intimidation, harassment, and discrimination which are unfortunately all too prevalent in the contemporary environment.
Today, CAIR-Philadelphia’s talented and highly experienced staff and dedicated volunteers work round-the-clock to conduct programs and workshops and to advocate, mediate and if need be, to litigate on behalf of Muslim Americans and the Muslim community. This often whirlwind of activity is only made possible by the generous contributions to CAIR-Philadelphia by the Muslim community of which you are all a part.
We ask that you demonstrate your continued support for CAIR, the voice of Philadelphia’s tens of thousands of Muslims, by attending our Annual Banquet on Saturday, March 15th at 5:00pm at the Springfield Country Club. Your attendance sends a powerful message to the Islamophobic network, and indeed, to the entire nation, that we will not be silent in the face of anti-Muslim discrimination and the insulting of our faith and our Prophet (pbuh).
This year’s banquet is a not-to-be-missed opportunity for you to network, socialize, and make new friends, while catching up with old acquaintances during the reception and dinner. Our program includes a dramatic multimedia performance by CAIR staff and activists, and an inspiring and motivating keynote address by internationally known scholar and community leader Imam Zaid Shakir of Zaytuna College. The program concludes with the hilarity of comedian Azhar Usman. And to make the evening into an affair for the whole family, there is also, concurrent with the adult presentation, a program for children with free childcare, and two professional children’s entertainers.
On behalf of the Executive Committee, I encourage you to attend our Annual Banquet and have a wonderful evening.
To learn more about CAIR, get banquet information, and to purchase tickets for you and your family, please visit our web site at http://pa.cair.com/.
Please post this message on your Facebook pages and circulate throughout your networks.