Director’s Desk: My Mother

My mother, Sabell Bender, died two days ago at the age of 92 after many years of painfully declining health. Even in her final years, when her assembly of medical conditions had left her immobile and robbed her of her booming and unforgettable voice, she clung to life with all the dedication and exuberance and yes, stubbornness, with which she had lived her nine decades on the Earth. Sabell was a born director and a force of nature, who, while acknowledging that she was a product of her times, also believed with all her heart that her abundance of talent and creativity made it possible for her to influence the times in which she lived.

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CAIR’s Victory Against Islamophobia

Earlier this week, a federal judge ruled that the FBI’s watchlist of “known and suspected terrorists” violates the constitutional rights of US citizens placed in the database. Judge Anthony Trenga, a United States District Judge of the Eastern District of Virginia, ruled the federal government has failed to honor constitutional rights and liberties for individuals placed on a “watchlist” without notice and opportunity for the individuals to challenge that status in his decision for the case Elhady v. Kable.

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CAIR-Philadelphia Condemns Bigoted Incident at Chestnut Hill Starbucks, Demands Apology for Muslim Customer

Approaching the ordering counter, Mr. Aziz ordered and paid for three iced-drinks and when asked, gave his name as “Aziz.” When the drinks were ready, a barista at the pick-up counter called out the kind of drinks, rather than the name of the customer, which is the customary procedure, as any regular Starbucks customer can attest to. CAIR-Philadelphia finds Starbucks’ behavior in this incident exceedingly deficient. After the incident in 2018 when two African American men were arrested in another Philadelphia Starbucks, one would have expected a greater commitment to religious and racial diversity from Starbucks staff.

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CAIR-Philadelphia Condemns Trump’s Support for Israel’s Denial of Entry to U.S. Congresswomen

The Philadelphia Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned President Trump’s support for the Israeli government’s denial of entry to two U.S. Congresswomen (both of whom are Muslim), preventing one from seeing her grandmother and both from acting as firsthand congressional observers of Israel’s anti-Palestinian policies and visiting one of the holiest sites in Islam.

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Demonstrators against gun violence carry No More Guns poster

CAIR-Philadelphia: “Blood from the El Paso Shooting Victims Leads to The White House Door”

The Philadelphia Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization (CAIR-Philadelphia) today said “blood of the El Paso shooting victims leads directly to the White House door.” The shooter in the deadly attack in Texas allegedly issued a manifesto in which he said he was inspired by the massacre of Muslims in Christchurch, New Zealand, by a white supremacist, and alarmed by “the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”

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