I’m a Muslim, a woman and an immigrant. I voted for Trump.

Asra Q. Nomani is a former Wall Street Journal reporter and a co-founder of the Muslim Reform Movement.

A lot is being said now about the “silent secret Trump supporters.”

This is my confession — and explanation: I — a 51-year-old, a Muslim, an immigrant woman “of color” — am one of those silent voters for Donald Trump. And I’m not a “bigot,” “racist,” “chauvinist” or “white supremacist,” as Trump voters are being called, nor part of some “whitelash.”

In the winter of 2008, as a lifelong liberal and proud daughter of West Virginia, a state born on the correct side of history on slavery, I moved to historically conservative Virginia only because the state had helped elect Barack Obama as the first African American president of the United States.

Tuesday evening, just minutes before the polls closed at Forestville Elementary School in mostly Democratic Fairfax County, I slipped between the cardboard partitions in the polling booth, a pen balanced carefully between my fingers, to mark my ballot for president, coloring in the circle beside the names of Trump and his running mate, Mike Pence.

Fox & Friends Host Airs Fake Story About Obama Funding Muslim Museum

The National Report strikes again.

The satirical website, which is less obviously satirical than the Onion (and some would say far less funny) fooled Fox News host Anna Kooimaninto believing its fake story that President Barack Obama was using personal funds to keep a Muslim museum open during the government shutdown.

Of course this juxtaposed perfectly against a story of veterans being denied entry into the World War II memorial, which was probably the National Report’s goal all along.

Somali-American man convicted in 2010 Portland, Ore., Christmas bomb plot apologizes

PORTLAND, Ore. — A young Somali-American man convicted of plotting to bomb a 2010 Christmas tree-lighting ceremony in Portland’s town square has written an apology letter in advance of his sentencing and says he renounces his former beliefs.

In the letter filed Friday by his lawyers in federal court, Mohamed Mohamud offers to speak to young Muslims “to help keep them away from the path of extremism” and tells U.S. District Judge Garr King he turned to books to help himself “walk a better path.” His reading list ranges from “The Grapes of Wrath” to President Barack Obama’s “The Audacity of Hope” to “A Zombie Apocalypse.”

Mohamud was arrested Nov. 26, 2010, after pressing a button on a cellphone that he believed would detonate a 1,800-pound diesel-and-fertilizer bomb near thousands of people at the annual holiday gathering.

The bomb was a fake supplied by undercover FBI agents posing as al-Qaida recruiters.

Reactions to the Woolwich murder

v23-web-adebowaleTwo men attacked and killed Drummer Lee Rigby, of 2nd Battalion the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, before they were shot by armed police and taken to hospital where they are still receiving treatment.

The attack in Woolwich, south-east London, has led to a renewed focus on terrorism and Islamist extremism in the UK as well as an increase in tension and attacks on Muslims in Britain. Two men have been charged with separate attacks on mosques, in Kent and Essex, after the death of the soldier. With far-right groups seeking to translate public disgust at the killing into general anti-Muslim and are reacting just as the murderers had hoped they would. There are reports of mosque attacks similar to incidents that occurred after the Tube and bus bombings of 7 July 2005.Vaguely disguised acts of racism quite at odds with the general public mood. The military charity Help for Heroes said since the attack people had been “spontaneously showing support for the armed forces”. The following leading figures and institutions have spoken out about the attack and what it means to the various communities as well as British society as a whole.

The Muslim Council of Britain

This is a truly barbaric act that has no basis in Islam and we condemn this unreservedly. Our thoughts are with the victim and his family. We understand the victim is a serving member of the armed forces. Muslims have long served in this country’s armed forces, proudly and with honour. This attack on a member of the armed forces is dishonourable, and no cause justifies this murder.

This action will no doubt heighten tensions on the streets of the United Kingdom. We call on all our communities, Muslim and non-Muslim, to come together in solidarity to ensure the forces of hatred do not prevail. It is important we allow our police authorities to do their job without speculation. We also urge the utmost vigilance and ask the police authorities to calm tensions.

Julie Siddiqi, Islamic Society of Britain

We need to remain calm and people need to remain vigilant.

We need to make sure we don’t allow extremists to divide the country. We need to remain calm and measured and get the message out there that we will not allow this to divide us.

It was an attack on all of us, on our country, all of us.

It’s very hard for the good people of this country to understand what’s going on. How can you say your religion is a religion of peace and then you have a guy literally with blood on his hands and a knife in his hand doing something completely the opposite?

I don’t think it matters what is happening in another country in any way whatsoever. This should never have happened. There is no justification.

Col Mike Dewar, security and defence analyst

Everyone says it’s a terrorist attack but personally I think it depends on what your definition of terror is. These two appeared to be two individuals, deluded, with extremist ideas, Islamist or not.

The main point is its most unlikely to be a terrorist incident: the formula for that is that it needs to be done by a recognised organisation, the maximum number of people need to be killed and then the terrorists need to escape, to possibly kill other people.

The man killed might have been a soldier or he was certainly sympathetic to soldiers, making him an obvious target. But then the men discussed their reasoning with bystanders: this is nutter territory.

Too early to tell if it’s more than deluded individuals. They may have been groomed but it doesn’t make them terrorists. Just heinous murder.

Jahan Mahmood, a community leader from Birmingham

There needs to be better collaboration between the authorities and the communities.

In many instances the government hasn’t really listened and there is a lot of talk about doing the work that they claim to carry out and the same can go for a number of senior Muslim organisations

These attackers are two isolated individuals who appear to be brainwashed and indoctrinated.

One of them appeared to quote from the bible. An extreme jihadist Muslim would not quote from the bible.

We are sickened by these types of events and we are deeply disturbed by their misguided interpretations of the faith

Keith Vaz MP, chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee

We need to look at who carried out this barbaric crime and follow it up swiftly.

People need to stay calm – I think some of the stories that we’ve heard this morning of demonstrations in certain areas… this is not helpful to the police. The police should not be distracted from the very important work that they have to do.

The crucial focus in the next 24 hours is to let Bernard Hogan-Howe [Metropolitan Police commissioner] and his team look and see what happened.

Usama Hasan, a senior researcher at Quilliam, a think tank specialising in counter-extremism

The real problem here is the decisive hatred preached by a very small minority of clerics in this country in a small number of our mosques and universities.

They know who they are and there are Muslim groups and other groups, left-wing groups, may I say, who defend that kind of grievance and victim-hood mentality. That’s what must change and has to stop. A very small number of people but unfortunately their influence is too high.

Boris Johnson, Mayor of London

It is completely wrong to blame this killing on the religion of Islam but it is also equally wrong to try to draw any links between this murder and the foreign policy or the action of British forces who are risking their lives abroad for the sake of freedom.

The fault lies wholly and exclusively in the warped and deluded mind-set of the people who did it.

Anders Fogh Rasmussen, NATO Secretary General

I strongly condemn this shocking and barbaric crime. Such attacks can never be justified. Our thoughts at this terrible time are with the victim’s family and friends. We stand in solidarity with the British government and the people of Britain.

Ajmal Masroor, an Imam and broadcaster in London

If it does it’ll be a tragedy because we would have allowed the terrorists and the thugs to win the battle, or the narrative. We don’t want to go down that route.

I would like to call upon every community member listening that there are racist thugs in our country, there are criminals, there are murderers, there are paedophiles – we don’t all become vigilantes and we don’t go around attacking one another.

At this moment in time when things are very difficult we would all make a distinction. These idiots have done this, there is no God in what they’ve done, it is not done in the name of Islam. It is not done for Muslims; it is just their thuggish low-life scum mind-set.

Dr Brooke Roger, senior lecturer in risk and terror at King’s College London

One of the problems in preventing violent radicalisation is the slight disconnect between the role of the security services tasked with monitoring and protecting us and some of the more local authorities and community-based groups.

Local authorities go in with long-term strategies and long-term goals. When something like this occurs we start bringing in the security services who have a long-term role but also have to act in the moment.

We need to make sure these groups are working together and they’re not undoing some of the relationships and trust that’s been built up.

I do think the websites are a significant problem. People can find the information if they want it and I think that is a problem.

We very much need to keep a balance between freedom to access information and understand the nature of individuals and the psychological process that occurs when they see this information.

Jim Murphy MP, shadow defence secretary

This horrendous and horrific act against our armed forces has shocked us all. In our moments of anger we should be strengthened in our national resolve to tackle hatred and terrorism wherever they exist.

The government and security services have our full support in establishing the facts and preventing any future such crimes.

As a country we should respond with a reassertion of the values of tolerance and justice, the values that these extremists hate so much about our country.

We should all help to ensure our armed forces never feel fearful in public. They protect us, and today each of us can send a loud message of support, solidarity and gratitude to all service personnel serving in our towns and cities at home and overseas.

 

Barack Obama, US President

Barack Obama says his country “stands resolute with the United Kingdom, our ally and friend, against violent extremism and terror”.

CAIR EXIT POLL: 85% OF AMERICAN MUSLIMS VOTED FOR OBAMA

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR),  released the results
of an informal exit poll indicating that more than 85 percent of
American Muslim voters picked President Obama in Tuesday’s election.

[NOTE: A similar CAIR exit poll in 2008 showed that 89 percent of
American Muslim voters picked then-candidate Barack Obama. Two percent
of respondents said they voted for Sen. John McCain.]

CAIR’s email survey of more than 650 American Muslim voters indicates
that just four percent of respondents cast their ballots for Mitt Romney.

Islamophobia as an Integral Part of the Political Platform

The general mood in the United States has grown increasingly intolerant towards Muslims. Charlotte Wiedemann was in New York and spoke with Imam Talib Abdur-Rashid, Afro-American and President of the Islamic Leadership Council, on the mood in this election year and about his criticism of some Muslims for what he sees as opportunism

Imam, you stood on the street with a sign that said “Muslims demand equal rights!” Against what were you directing your protest?

Talib Abdur-Rashid: The surveillance of Muslim communities, mosques, meeting places, and student groups is a grave violation of the American constitution. Under the pretext of security, the New York police and their “Intelligence Division” have assumed the right to snoop around wherever they like. We will not put up with this. The matter must be decided by the courts.

Opinion polls indicate that almost every other American holds a negative view of Islam. And every third Republican supporter calls Barack Obama a Muslim, here synonymous with being un-American. Is religious tolerance in the USA a thing of the past?

Rashid: The atmosphere today is even more negative for Muslims than after the September 2001 terrorist attacks. We were all traumatized by 9/11, but back then there were efforts to support each other as Americans and not to fall into the trap of a collective guilt mindset. Today, the Republicans and, in particular, the Tea Party, have made Islamophobia an integral part of their political platform. They utilize fears, traumas, and a lack of knowledge to further their political aims. We have observed in recent times that there is a rise in anti-Islamic emotions during every election year. This was the situation at the time of Obama’s election and equally the case in local elections in New York two years ago.

Little Voter Discomfort with Romney’s Mormon Religion and Only About Half Identify Obama as Christian

Most voters continue to say it is important for a president to have strong religious beliefs. But voters have limited awareness of the religious faiths of both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama. And there is little evidence to suggest that concerns about the candidates’ respective faiths will have a meaningful impact in the fall elections.

The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life and the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted June 28-July 9, 2012, among 2,973 adults, including 2,373 registered voters, finds that 60% of voters are aware that Romney is Mormon, virtually unchanged from four months ago, during the GOP primaries.

The vast majority of those who are aware of Romney’s faith say it doesn’t concern them. Fully eight-in-ten voters who know Romney is Mormon say they are either comfortable with his faith (60%) or that it doesn’t matter to them (21%).

The new survey on religion and politics finds that nearly four years into his presidency the view that Barack Obama is Muslim persists. Currently, 17% of registered voters say that Obama is Muslim; 49% say he is Christian, while 31% say they do not know Obama’s religion.

Partisan Polarization Surges in Bush, Obama Years

Trends in American Values: 1987-2012

Overview: As Americans head to the polls this November, their values and basic beliefs are more polarized along partisan lines than at any point in the past 25 years. Unlike in 1987, when this series of surveys began, the values gap between Republicans and Democrats is now greater than gender, age, race or class divides.

Overall, there has been much more stability than change across the 48 political values measures that the Pew Research Center has tracked since 1987. But the average partisan gap has nearly doubled over this 25-year period – from 10 percentage points in 1987 to 18 percentage points in the new study.

Nearly all of the increases have occurred during the presidencies of George W. Bush and Barack Obama. During this period, both parties’ bases have often been critical of their parties for not standing up for their traditional positions. Currently, 71% of Republicans and 58% of Democrats say their parties have not done a good job in this regard.

House Democrats: NYPD should purge spy files, end monitoring of mosques, cafe conversations

WASHINGTON — House Democrats on Thursday urged the New York Police Department to purge its intelligence databases of information gleaned from its clandestine spying on Muslim neighborhoods.

They also criticized the Obama administration for offering tepid responses to questions about whether it endorses such tactics.

Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., the first Muslim elected to Congress and one of the lawmakers who introduced the resolution, said he understood the political difficulties the White House faces in wading into a debate over racial profiling and national security.

“But transformational leadership is about standing up and doing the right thing,” he said.

Dozens of lawmakers have been asking the Justice Department for eight months to investigate the NYPD’s tactics and determine whether they are legal. Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez, the top civil rights official at the department, has not answered questions about the matter. His spokeswoman has said attorneys are reviewing the requests to investigate.

Lawmakers introduced a resolution Thursday calling for an end to NYPD programs that infiltrated mosques and monitored even innocent conversations in cafes and bookstores. Muslim business owners were included in police files, even with no allegations of wrongdoing.

New York Post columnist Michael Goodwin appeared on Fox & Friends on Monday where he blasted Congressional Democrats for “voting to defund the New York police department” due to what he describes as a persistent narrative that the NYPD has been targeting and profiling Muslim citizens without probable cause. He says that this move by Democrats in the House runs counter to the narrative that President Barack Obama is building up ahead of the November election, which is that Democrats are tough on terrorism at home and abroad.

British Peer Lord Ahmed suspended after ‘offering £10m bounty on Barack Obama and George Bush’

Lord Ahmed, 53, who in 1998 became the first Muslim life peer, was reported to have made the comments at a conference in Haripur in Pakistan.

A Labour Party spokesman said: “We have suspended Lord Ahmed pending investigation. If these comments are accurate we utterly condemn these remarks which are totally unacceptable.”

According to Pakistan’s Express Tribune newspaper Lord Ahmed offered the bounty in response to a US action a week ago.

The US issued a $10 million reward for the capture of Pakistani militant leader Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, founder of the Lashkar-e-Taiba group, who it suspects of orchestrating the 2008 Mumbai attacks in which 166 people died as terrorists stormed hotels and a train station.

The British peer reportedly said: “‘If the US can announce a reward of $10 million for the (capture) of Hafiz Saeed, I can announce a bounty of £10 million (for the capture of) President Obama and his predecessor, George Bush.”