‘We can’t become a dictatorship’: Protests erupt across the U.S. against Trump refugee ban

Thousands of demonstrators rallied outside the White House and in cities nationwide Sunday to protest President Trump’s refugee ban, as the executive order continued to halt travel in some locations, despite being partially lifted by federal judges overnight.

In addition to Washington, large protests took place in New York, Philadelphia, Boston and Atlanta, and at airports in more than 30 cities.

In downtown Washington, protesters lined Pennsylvania Avenue and filled Lafayette Square. They cycled through a variety of chants, and wielded poster boards bearing messages such as “Islamophobia is un-American” and “Dissent is patriotic.”

The travel ban bars entry into the United States from seven predominately Muslim countries. Despite a federal judge’s ruling late Saturday night, and similar court decisions with varying degrees of power, the Department of Homeland Security issued a statement Sunday that said the agency would continue to implement the travel rule.

Florida Parents Protest Textbook With Chapter About Islam

November 6, 2013

 

Parents upset about a history textbook that they say emphasizes Islam more than other religions protested outside Volusia County school district headquarters.

The parents claim that the book contains too much information about Islam and not enough about Christianity and other religions. There was even a call by organizers asking students to go home and tear the section on Islam out of their books.

Because tearing up (or burning?) books is always the proper response to such things.

The county district was forced to postpone a Tuesday meeting “in the interest of public safety.”

“This group is holding a protest and rally to oppose the teaching of the historical and basic pillars of Islam to students in Volusia County,” said Hassan Shibly, Florida executive director of CAIR, a Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization.

“It is displaying an alarming level of intolerance and brazen disregard of minority religions… We find their actions un-American and against every core principal that makes this country so great.”

The textbook in question, Prentice Hall World History, protesters claim, devotes an entire chapter to Islam and teaches children about how it came to be and about the building of the Muslim empire, while Christianity and Judaism are referenced only in small paragraphs here and there.

And we can see the problem here: Where in America will the children learn about Christianity?

Of course, the protesters claim that this is in no way about getting all worked up and encouraging kids to vandalize a schoolbook because they think Islam is un-American and evil.

It’s about religious equality!

You know, with all the crazy things going down in Florida, such as a law that makes it perfectly legal for a person to shoot and kill another person because he or she feels threatened, and with people with serious medical conditions that can be alleviated only with medical marijuana having their homes raided by cops like they’re the leader of a drug cartel, it’s good to know there are citizens out there tackling the truly important issues.

 

Broward-Palm Beach New Times: http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/pulp/2013/11/florida_parents_protest_textbo.php

 

For Muslims, Day of Celebration Amid Controversy

The ceremony, held along a blocked-off portion of Madison Avenue, marked the start of the American Muslim Day Parade on Sunday, an annual event, first held in 1985, that brings together Muslims of many ethnicities and nationalities who worship in the New York region.

The parade is intended as a celebration of diversity and pride in the Muslim community, but this year it had a difficult context: national controversies over a planned Islamic center and mosque near ground zero, the threatened desecration of Korans by anti-Muslim ministers, and recent incidences of what the authorities called hate crimes against Muslims, including a New York Citycabdriver who was slashed.

Some marchers had feared protesters on Sunday, but only the occasional Christian missionary appeared. Still, the turnout was far smaller than at the city’s better-known ethnic parades, and a few organizers speculated that safety concerns kept many Muslims away. “Some people are too scared to show up,” said Zaheer Uddin, executive director of the Islamic Leadership Council of Metropolitan New York, a sponsoring group.

Federal court reviews legality of NYPD Muslim surveillance program

Judge will rule whether strict limits on surveillance apply to the NYPD’s investigations into hundreds of Muslims.

 

A federal judge on Tuesday revisited at a decades-old court settlement restricting how the New York Police Department conducts surveillanceafter civil rights lawyers accused the department of breaking those rules by monitoring Muslims.

 

The dispute centers on the restrictions set by the Handschu decree, which was put in place in response to surveillance used against war protesters in the 1960s and 70s. The decree was relaxed following the September 11 terror attacks to allow police to more freely monitor political activity in public places.

 

“I’ve come to think of this case as a volcano that’s asleep most of the time … but every now and then blows up,” District Judge Charles Haight said at the start of a hearing in federal court in Manhattan.

 

The latest eruption stems from the NYPD‘s monitoring of Muslims, where they eat, study and worship as part of its counterterrorism efforts.

 

The police measures directed at Muslims violate the Handschu decree “because they’re not rooted in the fact that there’s a criminal predicate”, said plaintiff attorney Paul Chevigny. “They’re rooted in the fact that the subjects are Muslims.”

The city has countered by claiming that it closely observes the Handschu guidelines when making decisions about how to fight terror. A city lawyer, Peter Farrell, told the judge on Tuesday that the department launches investigations based on evidence of legitimate threats, not religion.

 

The civil rights lawyers filed the latest motion following a series of stories by the Associated Press that revealed the NYPD intelligence division infiltrated dozens of mosques and Muslim student groups and investigated hundreds.

Spying on Muslims

The New York City Police Department’s indefensible program of spying on law-abiding Muslims in their neighborhoods and houses of worship has turned out to be even more aggressive than earlier reports had shown.

According to a recent Associated Press report by Adam Goldman and Matt Apuzzo, the surveillance operation designated at least a dozen mosques as terrorist organizations. The designation was used to justify open-ended “terrorism enterprise investigations,” circumventing court-imposed limitations on police investigations of constitutionally protected activities. The report is based largely on leaked police documents and interviews; though most of the documents date back a few years, recent court filings suggest such activities are continuing.

 

In a move reminiscent of discredited police efforts in the 1960s and 1970s to spy on black activists and antiwar protesters, attempts were made to plant informants on the boards of mosques and a prominent Arab-American group in Brooklyn that helps new immigrants.

 

Syrian-Americans, supporters rally on Common to protest possible US strike

More than a hundred people, including Syrian-Americans and pro-peace supporters, gathered on the Boston Common today to protest a possible US missile strike against Syria.

Speakers standing in front of Syrian flags bearing portraits of Syrian president Bashar al-Assad decried US plans to launch a “limited” attack against the country in retaliation for an alleged chemical weapons attack on civilians last week. The ideologically diverse crowd included members of the Green-Rainbow Party and other anti-war protesters.

Syrian-Americans at the event almost universally supported Assad, whom they praised as a secular leader capable of holding together Syria’s many ethnic and religious factions. They also said the majority of rebel fighters in the country were foreign-backed terrorists, not Syrian dissidents.

 

Obama Protesters Sing ‘Bye Bye Black Sheep,’ Rail Against ‘Half-White Muslim’ In Arizona

A raucous crowd of supporters and protesters from both ends of the political spectrum showed up outside President Barack Obama’s appearance in Phoenix, Ariz. on Tuesday, with some of his detractors turning to racially charged attacks to express their opposition.

From the Arizona Republic:

 

Obama foes at one point sang, “Bye Bye Black Sheep,” a derogatory reference to the president’s skin color, while protesters like Deanne Bartram raised a sign saying, “Impeach the Half-White Muslim!”

The Republic reported that hundreds of people gathered outside Desert Vista High School as Obama unveiled a plan to overhaul the nation’s mortgage finance system. Some protesters came from Obama’s left, urging him to reject the Keystone XL oil pipeline and take other actions on climate change. But a prevailing theme among many in the protest appeared to be issues of race. Some even suggested that Obama himself was to blame for racial tensions.

 

“We have gone back so many years,” Judy Burris told the Republic, arguing Obama had taken the nation back to pre-Civil Rights era levels of racism. “He’s divided all the races. I hate him for that.”

Others carried signs calling for Obama to be impeached, Tucson News Now reported, though despite the negativity, the majority of those in attendance were Obama fans.

Police violence against protesters in Hamburg

July 21

 

On Saturday, approximately 1000 people demonstrated in Hamburg against “racist police profiling” and asked to stop police violence. Also, 300 demonstrators protested in the city of Offenbach for the same cause.

 

A routine police check escalated in the Northern part of Hamburg, when police was confronted with rioting inhabitants. The police reacted with pepper gas. Since then police control increased in the last week, profiling Turkish and Arabic youngsters. A mosque was controlled and investigated. With respect to the month of Ramadan, many visitors were in the mosque proceeding midnight prayers. Police has entered the mosque threatening the visitors with batons.

 

A young participant Soufian D. witnessed the police to be violent injuring three Muslims. The policemen are said to threaten the young Muslims “better not to speak with the press”. The police authorities of Offenbach have deny the incident. According to the police, it reacted to an alert. Having checked the identities of witnesses, some would be non-cooperative and resistant, injuring the hand of one policeman.

Muslim group’s TN forum with feds disrupted by heckling

MANCHESTER — Hundreds of people turned out at the Manchester Convention Center Tuesday evening for an event billed as a discussion of public discourse in a diverse society, with a particular focus on the Muslim religion.

People were turned away at the door because the facility was too full. Some grew angry and started hurling terms such as “communist,” “socialist” and “Muslim” at law enforcement officials.

The indoor event, sponsored by the American Muslim Advisory Council, was countered by a large group of protesters, both outside and inside the facility. Some who made it in before admission was cut off continuously interrupted the speakers.

The interruptions were so intense at times that attendee Elaine Smith, 55, of Bedford County, said she was afraid of other audience members.

During the keynote speech given by Bill Killian, U.S. Attorney of the Eastern District of Tennessee, audience members continually interrupted, making it difficult to understand what was said. Killian brought a PowerPoint presentation that covered the First and 14th amendments and what constitutes a hate crime, among other things. He read the First Amendment verbatim, between interruptions.

Moore said the FBI was continually working to build relationships with worshippers of Islam and other faiths because “they are essential” to keeping the country safe.

Anger and an Arrest as a Leader of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood Visits Brooklyn

The tension that has gripped Egypt in recent weeks over a draft constitution written by Islamists briefly erupted on a New York street on Saturday night, with the arrest of a protester who disrupted a discussion of the document byEssam El-Erian, a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Mr. Erian, who is also the vice president of the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, told a standing-room-only crowd at the private Noor Islamic School in Brooklyn that the draft constitution would weaken the traditionally autocratic Egyptian presidency and strengthen Parliament.

During the discussion, Mr. Erian reassured Egyptian expatriates, who can vote on the draft in a referendum on Wednesday, that “it is not true when people say it is like the Koran and cannot be changed.”

The event continued after protesters were ejected from the room, but members of the audience seated in the women’s section continued to pepper Mr. Erian with hostile questions about the Brotherhood’s domination of the constitution-drafting process and the protests that have erupted in recent weeks against President Mohamed Morsi, a Brotherhood member who granted himself expanded powers to push the draft to completion.

Mr. Erian addressed controversy over his visit on Facebook, writing: “Everything that has been published and broadcast about meetings, consultations, protests and attacks during my short visit to New York have been fabrications and lies. Some people owe me an apology to maintain cordiality.”