Notorious anti-Muslim bigot Pamela Geller and her Islamophobic organization, “Stop the Islamization of America,” are at it again. They have purchased advertising space on SEPTA, Philadelphia’s public transit agency, to place anti-Islamic ads, similar to what the hate group has done in Washington, DC and New York City. Read more…
By Jacob Bender,
CAIR-Philadelphia Executive Director
This past Sunday, Sept. 21, I was privileged to join over 400,000 of my fellow human beings in the largest demonstration in history to warn of the dangers of climate change to future life on earth. I marched with the Muslim contingent, composed of people from CAIR-Philly, CAIR-NY, ICNA, ISNA, Islamic Relief, Majlis Shura of NY, Muslim Consultative Network, Al-Khoei Foundation, Greenfaith, Muslims Giving Back, Muslim Boys Scouts, Arab American Association of NY, MSAs, and MAS. Read more…
A LETTER FROM JACOB BENDER
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CAIR-PHILADELPHIA
Dear Friends and Supporters of CAIR-Philadelphia, As Salaam Alaikum:
Exactly thirteen years ago today, on that late summer morning of September 11, 2001, the world — and the American Muslim community — were forever altered by the Al-Qaeda attacks on New York City and Washington DC.
The lives of millions of American Muslims continue to be impacted by the long dark shadows of the falling Twin Towers. We should all be thankful that the Council on American-Islamic Relations already existed on the morning September 11th, for it is no exaggeration to say that in the years after 9/11, it was CAIR that became the leading voice of the Muslim American community by:
- Condemning the attacks as a desecration of Islam;
- Publicizing the worldwide Muslim condemnation of Al-Qaeda;
- Cautioning that the US invasion of Iraq and the prolonged occupation of Afghanistan — with its legacy of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi, Afghan, and American dead and wounded, and a still increasing price tag of trillions of dollars — would be an unmitigated disaster for American interests;
- Warning of the dangers of an endless “War on Terror” to the relationship between the US and the Muslim world;
- Defending Muslims in America against illegal government surveillance and private discrimination; and finally,
- Countering the bigotry of the Islamophobic network by educating non-Muslim Americans about the true nature of Islam as a religion or peace and justice.
CAIR-Philadelphia continues its workshop series of “Muslim Youth Leadership Programs” for adults, expertly designed to help parents support their children facing Islamophobia and questions of identity during their formative years. These workshops are free and open to the public.
September 13 at Islamic Society of Greater Valley Forge
Saturday, September 27, 5:15 – 7:00 PM
Islamic Society of Delaware
28 Salem Church Rd., Newark DE 19713
Friday, October 17, 7:00 – 8:30 PM
Islamic Community Center of Lancaster
275 Hess Blvd. Lancaster PA 17601
Saturday, October 18, 6:30 – 8:30 PM
855 Big Oak Rd, Yardley PA 19067
In addition to his regular duties this summer, Staff Attorney Ryan Tack-Hooper taught a course on legal writing and reasoning to international students at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. The class focused on getting students to write and speak clearly and plainly. As George Orwell (author of the classic anti-totalitarian novels “Animal Farm” and “1984”) wrote, bad writing is “designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.” The class presented an opportunity to tell students about CAIR’s work and to “bring about some improvement by starting at the verbal end.”
Our legal department is working to bring a just resolution to several cases involving a failure to accommodate religious practices, including a medical student forced to shave his beard, a security guard forced to remove her hijab, and a prisoner forced to break his Ramadan fast. Everyone in the CAIR community should know that you have the right to reasonable accommodation of your religious practices in your employment, education, and dealings with the government. The more people who stand up for their freedom, the better it is protected for everyone.