Dear Friends, As-Salaam-Alaikum,
Nearly two years ago, the leadership of CAIR-Philadelphia made a historic decision: to hire a non-Muslim as the executive director of this chapter of America’s pre-eminent Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization. This decision, in the context of the hate-filled times in which we live, was a courageous choice, for it squarely challenged those broadcasters of bigotry who claim that Islam is intrinsically xenophobic and “Jew-hating,” incompatible with religious pluralism and democracy, and addicted to violence and world-wide terrorism.
I remain deeply honored by my appointment and proud of all of CAIR-Philadelphia’s accomplishments during my tenure:
- Over 100 media appearances, including TV and radio interviews and profiles, newspaper and magazine stories, letters-to-the-editors, op-ed articles, and thousands of postings on the internet and social media;
- Dozens of Muslim clients and institutions helped, and defended, free-of-charge by our Legal Department;
- The Township of Bensalem taken to court for refusing to grant Bensalem Masjid permission to build a mosque;
- Thousands of Muslim youth, students, parents and adults trained in our “Know Your Rights” and “Anti-Bullying” workshops that help empower the American Muslim community;
- Scores of Christian and Jews and others informed about Islam through CAIR-Philadelphia’s public “Islam 101″ courses and film screenings;
- And CAIR’s participation in numerous interfaith coalitions that promote and advance the cause of mutual understanding, peace, and justice.
I am continuously moved by the warm reception I have received from all sectors of the Muslim community, yet my travels around the Delaware Valley have made clear the great challenges that still confront American Muslims:
- Weekly calls to our office from Muslims facing discrimination and harassment in their workplaces because of their faith;
- Attempted intimidation and entrapment by over-zealous law enforcement personnel;
- Daily Islamophobic tirades by broadcasters and politicians that denigrate Islam and the Quran and stereotype and scapegoat the Muslim community;
- A pervasive ignorance among the general public about Muslims and all things Islamic;
- And the denial of halal food to Muslims in prison.
In order to address these challenges, CAIR-Philadelphia and I need your support.
As this Ramadan draws to a close, and Muslims approach the joyousness of Eid-al-Fitr, now is the time to help your community help and defend itself, to defeat the voices of hate, to prove that Muslims are loyal Americans, that Islam is indeed compatible with democracy, and that an American Jew can serve the Muslim community, because God made us different communities so that we might excel with one another in good works anchored in the teachings of our traditions.
So please, in the next few days, I ask you to consider giving $30, $50, $100, $250, $500, $1,000, $2,500, $5,000, or whatever you can. We appreciate any contribution you give.
Contributions to CAIR are both zakat-eligible and tax-deductible.
Please take a minute RIGHT NOW to show your support for our work by going to pa.cair.com/donate to make a contribution.
Wishing you and your families a Blessed Eid Mubarak,