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January 14, 2015 0

After Terrorist Attacks, Anti-immigrant Activists Attack Muslim Immigration

In the wake of the deadly ter­ror­ist attacks on the Char­lie Hebdo Paris office and a kosher mar­ket in Paris, anti-immigrant activists in the U.S. are urg­ing the United States to stop all Mus­lim immi­gra­tion to this coun­try. They also claim that any­one who prac­tices Islam is inclined towards extremism.

Tom Tancredo

Tom Tan­credo

In a Jan­u­ary 12, 2015 col­umn for World Net Daily (WND) titled, “Yes, It is Islam!” for­mer Col­orado Con­gress­man Tom Tan­credo writes, “So, here we are again, being told that we can’t blame Islam for the mur­der­ous acts that have cost thou­sands of lives since 9/11 and mil­lions of lives since the 14th cen­tury! Well, then let me ask a sim­ple ques­tion: If Islam did not exist, how many of these events would have occurred?”

Although Tan­credo acknowl­edges that rad­i­cal Islam is the prob­lem, he does not make a dis­tinc­tion between ter­ror­ists and peo­ple of the Mus­lim faith.. He asserts “that the jihadists do not rep­re­sent all Mus­lims is irrel­e­vant.” He con­tin­ues, “We have spent tens of bil­lions hunt­ing down and killing ter­ror­ist lead­ers with drones and other tools of high-tech war­fare, while accept­ing and per­mit­ting the growth of the can­cer of Shariah law in our own com­mu­ni­ties.” Tan­credo then sug­gests that “we stop all immi­gra­tion of Mus­lims into the United States and then deport those already here who adhere to Shariah law.” He also calls for seal­ing all our bor­ders against ille­gal entry to pre­vent jihadists from using “our open bor­ders to infil­trate our communities.”

Frosty Wooldridge, who is an advi­sory board mem­ber of the extreme anti-immigrant group Fed­er­a­tion for Amer­i­can Immi­gra­tion Reform, often den­i­grates immi­grants and Mus­lims in his columns for in the right-wing online pub­li­ca­tion, “News with Views.” He has writ­ten a series of columns titled, “Impreg­nat­ing Amer­ica with Mus­lims,” in which he attacks Mus­lim immi­grants. In his lat­est col­umn on Jan­u­ary 12, titled, “Islam Forces West­ern Ideals into Extinc­tion,” he reprints a num­ber of anti-Muslim quotes from the late writer and bigot Lawrence Auster, includ­ing: “It is impor­tant to under­stand that what makes Islam dan­ger­ous to non-Muslims is not that Mus­lims are morally bad peo­ple. The prob­lem is not that Mus­lims are bad peo­ple, the prob­lem is that they are good Mus­lims. Our con­cern is with the reli­gion and the polit­i­cal ide­ol­ogy of Islam, which makes all Mus­lims dan­ger­ous to us, since all Mus­lims, even if they per­son­ally have no aggres­sive inten­tions, even if they are per­son­ally fine and lovely peo­ple, are part of the Islamic com­mu­nity and owe their high­est loy­alty to Islam.”

Wooldridge ends his col­umn by warn­ing, “The illit­er­ate, bar­baric, killing-machine war­lord Mohammed con­tin­ues his car­nage into the 21st cen­tury with the hands of 1.5 bil­lion of his fol­low­ers. If we fail to stop mass immi­gra­tion, France’s night­mare becomes our future.”

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December 4, 2014 0

The Price of Religious Exclusion

The Town­ship of Bridge­wa­ter, NJ recently set­tled a law­suit filed by a local Mus­lim con­gre­ga­tion – the Al Falah Cen­ter – for $7.75 mil­lion.  The law­suit alleged that the Township’s expe­di­tious pas­sage of a new land use ordi­nance which effec­tively barred the Cen­ter from con­vert­ing a for­mer 15,500 sq. foot ban­quet into a mosque vio­lated the fed­eral Reli­gious Land Use and Insti­tu­tion­al­ized Per­sons Act (“RLUIPA”).bridgewater

In Octo­ber 2010, the Cen­ter signed a con­tract to pur­chase a for­mer Red Roof Inn with the intent of con­vert­ing it into a mosque.  A prior Town­ship traf­fic study con­cluded that the pro­posed con­ver­sion would not increase traf­fic.  And in March 2011, the Sum­mit County Plan­ning Board found that the con­ver­sion raised min­i­mal traf­fic issues and it con­di­tioned approval of Al Falah’s land use appli­ca­tion on instal­la­tion of a new traf­fic light paid for by the Center.

But six days after the County issued its find­ing and shortly before a new state law favor­able to the Center’s land use appli­ca­tion went into effect, the Town­ship adopted a new land use ordi­nance that effec­tively barred Al Falah from using the prop­erty for a mosque.  Inter­est­ingly, the same ordi­nance did not affect the oper­a­tion of the other sev­en­teen exist­ing houses of wor­ship within the Town­ship, none of which are mosques.

A fed­eral dis­trict court found that the Township’s actions likely vio­lated RLUIPA, as well as denied Bridgewater’s motion for sum­mary judg­ment.  The Town­ship appealed this deci­sion to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.

The Inter­faith Coali­tion on Mosques (“ICOM”), which is spon­sored by ADL, filed a friend-of-the court (ami­cus) brief with the Third Cir­cuit in sup­port of the Cen­ter.  How­ever, the case set­tled dur­ing the pen­dency of the appeal.

Under the set­tle­ment terms, the Cen­ter will not build a mosque on the Red Roof Inn prop­erty.  But the Town­ship will pay $2.75 mil­lion to buy an alter­na­tive 15-acre prop­erty for the Cen­ter and Bridgewater’s insur­ance car­rier will pay Al Falah another $5 mil­lion for alleged dam­ages and attorney’s fees.

The legal set­tle­ment is not an admis­sion of lia­bil­ity or dis­crim­i­na­tion.  But per­haps it has taught the Town­ship and oth­ers munic­i­pal­i­ties an expen­sive and vital les­son: reli­gious free­dom in Amer­ica is for all faiths, not just some.

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November 26, 2014 1

Anti-immigrant Activist Provides Substantial Input For Georgia Bill

Accord­ing to a news­pa­per report, long­time anti-immigrant activist D.A. King pro­vided “sub­stan­tial input” for an anti-immigrant bill pre-filed in the Geor­gia Sen­ate for 2015. The bill seeks to block peo­ple who have received work per­mits and deferred depor­ta­tion through the fed­eral deferred action pro­gram from receiv­ing driver’s licenses in the state.d-a-king

King is the founder of the Marietta-based anti-immigrant group Dustin Inman Soci­ety (DIS) and has a his­tory of mak­ing big­oted state­ments and work­ing with the more extreme ele­ments of the anti-immigrant movement.

In April 2007, for exam­ple, when speak­ing at a New­ton County, Geor­gia Repub­li­can Party meet­ing, Mr. King report­edly claimed that undoc­u­mented immi­grants are “not here to mow your lawn – they’re here to blow up your build­ings and kill your chil­dren, and you, and me.”  Mr. King has also asserted that the United States is “being invaded and col­o­nized” by a “Mex­i­can mob that brings with it a cul­ture of law­less­ness and chaos.” Ear­lier this year, in response to chil­dren flee­ing vio­lence from Cen­tral Amer­ica and seek­ing refuge in the United States, King asserted that the chil­dren are “swarm­ing the bor­der and bring­ing disease.”

For a num­ber of years, King penned arti­cles for the racist web­site VDARE, founded by white suprema­cist Peter Brimelow. In one blog entry, he dis­cussed his expe­ri­ence at a March for Dig­nity, com­prised of, in King’s words, “mostly His­panic demon­stra­tors.” He wrote, “I got the sense that I had left the coun­try of my birth and been trans­ported to some Mex­i­can vil­lage, com­pletely taken over by an angry, barely restrained mob….My first act on a safe return home was to take a shower.”

King also has ties to racist John Tan­ton, the archi­tect of the mod­ern anti-immigrant move­ment. Tax deductible dona­tions to King’s DIS can be made through U.S., Inc., a group founded by Tan­ton. The pres­i­dent of U.S., Inc. is anti-immigrant extrem­ist K.C. McAlpin, Tanton’s right-hand man. McAlpin orga­nizes an anti-immigrant Writ­ers Work­shop event each year where activists, includ­ing a num­ber of racists, present on immi­gra­tion top­ics. King spoke at both the 2010 and 2011 Writ­ers Work­shop.  In 2010, other speak­ers included Jason Rich­wine, who left the Her­itage Foun­da­tion after infor­ma­tion emerged that he had writ­ten for a “nation­al­ist” web­site and had writ­ten his doc­toral the­sis argu­ing that the U.S. should focus its immi­gra­tion efforts on peo­ple with high IQs, and Kevin DeAnna, the founder of the now-defunct far-right stu­dent group Youth for West­ern Civ­i­liza­tion. In addi­tion, King is a con­trib­u­tor to Tanton’s anti-immigrant jour­nal The Social Con­tract, edited by racist Wayne Lut­ton.

Though King has demo­nized immi­grants through his big­oted state­ments, he con­tin­ues to be a major player in the immi­gra­tion debate in Geor­gia. His work­ing rela­tion­ship with politi­cians can impact immi­gra­tion leg­is­la­tion and the lives of immi­grants in Georgia.

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