As the Executive Director of the Philadelphia chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, I believe your readers should be aware that many Muslim organizations, including ours, have condemned the recent brutal murders in the Jerusalem synagogue. CAIR’s national statement reads in-part, “We condemn this and any other attack on a house of worship and urge all parties in that holy city to refrain from actions that further inflame religious tensions.”
CAIR-PA In the News
CAIR-Philadelphia Staff Attorney Ryan Tack-Hooper appeared on Business Matters (WFMZ Ch. 69) with Tony Iannelli with a panel discussing ISIS.
CAIR-Philadelphia’s staff attorney, Ryan Tack-Hooper, was interviewed on NBC10 about the Islamophobic ad campaign. He denounced the bigotry of Geller’s ads while calling for the ignorant ads to be countered by compassion and reason.
CAIR-Philadelphia Executive Director Jacob Bender was interviewed on El Zol 1340 WHAT-AM. He discussed CAIR, world events, and his documentary film, Out of Cordoba.
Shortly after the latest cease-fire expired in Gaza on Friday, Jacob Bender gingerly climbed the steps of the mimbar, the pulpit at the Islamic Society of Delaware here. A Jew in a mosque, his hands palpably quivering but his reedy voice steady, he read some brief comments to close the afternoon’s worship service, called Juma’a. Mr. Bender offered both hope and censure, twinned: Muslims and Jews could still be “partners for peace and justice,” he said. Israel and Hamas bore shared responsibility for the current carnage, he added, and more hatred would lead to more violence, while love would lead to reconciliation.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations is the “most pre-eminent and largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization in the country,” according to the Philadelphia chapter’s executive director, Jacob Bender. It began 20 years ago and now has 30 chapters across the country, about half of which have attorneys on staff. The Philadelphia chapter started in 1994. The council has a two-pronged mission, as Bender described it: One, legal protection of civil rights; and two, advocating for and educating the public about the Muslim community.
Although it might seem unusual for a Jew to lead a Muslim organization, it was a natural next step for Jacob Bender. In October, he became executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations’ Philadelphia chapter — and the first non-Muslim to head up any of the 30 chapters. The organization focuses on civil rights protection for Muslims and counteracting negative stereotypes about Islam through education and advocacy. Continue reading (subscription required) …