One Factor in the Defeat of Allen West: High Muslim Turnout

A belated post but a necessary one.: (h/t: hsmoghul)

LEADING ISLAMOPHOBE ALLEN WEST LIKELY DEFEATED DUE TO HIGH MUSLIM AMERICAN TURNOUT

(Progressive Change)

Yesterday, right-wing House Republican Allen West finally conceded in his race against Democrat Patrick Murphy. West had made himself notorious for his anti-Muslim attitude. He argued that Islam is “not a faith” but a “totalitarian theocratic political ideology,” and that terrorism is inherent to Islam. He even said that Muslim congressman Keith Ellison (D) of “represent(ing) the antithesis of the principles upon which this country was established.”

But in an America that grows increasingly progressive and tolerant, bigotry can be a major electoral liability. Murphy’s margin of victory is roughly 1,900 votes. I talked to Imran Siddiqui, who works for the organization Empowering Motivating Educating Resourceful Grassroots Entities, which registers Muslim voters in the area. He mentioned that his organization had 2,500 Muslim voters in their database in the district and that they witnessed 80 percent turnout. That means roughly 2,000 Muslim-American votes — a little bit higher than Murphy’s margin of victory.

West’s loss should be a lesson to all those in Congress who would try to use bigotry to their political advantage. Sometimes the targets of your ire get out and vote, and when they do, you lose.

Rep. Allen West still refuses to concede, calls recount a ‘sham’

According to Florida election law, if the gap is larger than 0.5 percent, which it was, then no official recount is needed. But yet a recount was still given out to the former, one-term Representative Allen West. In predictable fashion West has called the recount a “sham.”

Rep. Allen West still refuses to concede, calls recount a ‘sham’ 

By Yukio Strachan

Palm Beach Gardens – After a partial recount of early voting ballots on Sunday, Republican Rep. Allen West still refuses to relinquish his Florida congressional seat to Democratic challenger Patrick Murphy, calling the recount a sham.
West gained votes, but Murphy still held a 50.3 percent share of the ballots and an overall lead of 1,907 votes, said the Washington Post.The gap is larger than the 0.5 percent or less needed for an official recount under Florida election law.

Originally it was thought St. Lucie County election workers would recount all early voting ballots.

Only the last three days of early voting were recounted. Assistant County Attorney Heather Young told WPTV News Channel 5 the recount would only include the last three days of early voting because those were the only days the county encountered problems reading memory cards.

West’s team called the recount a “sham,” arguing that all eight days of early ballots should be recounted and threatening further legal action.

“We’ll pursue every legal action available to us to ensure that every vote is counted fairly and accurately in this election and once we’re satisfied that’s been the case, obviously we’ll be ready to move forward. But at this point and time, there’s a number of questions that need to be answered,” said Tim Edson, the campaign manager for Allen West.

An attorney for Murphy was also present during the recount and said the West campaign is wasting time in pursuing legal action.

“Their ball seems to be continuing to change and it is clear, it is a resounding victory for Patrick Murphy and it is time for us to move forward and do the people’s business and it’s time for Mr. West to take the honorable course, recognized the inevitable,” said Sean Dominick, an attorney for Murphy.

West has been keeping a low public profile since Tuesday’s election. On Sunday, the Palm Beach Gardens Republican posted a statement on Facebook:

Today is Veteran’s Day and I am spending the day at several events with those few who have always answered our Nation’s call. They are the guardians of our liberties and freedoms.

However, on this day I am deeply troubled by the voting procedure issues emanating from St Lucie County. It is unconscionable to me to witness what is transpiring before our eyes.

This is not about who gets a congressional seat, because it belongs to the people. This is about preserving the integrity of the voting process and the fundamental right to free and honest elections, because it is for that which I, and all veterans, have risked our lives.

Adam Hasner: Islamophobe for Congress

Loonwatch has been reporting on Adam Hasner since 2009 when he first came across our radar screen for his alliance with Pamela Geller and endorsement of Geert Wilders. Not long ago he was pontificating about “Civilization Jihad” and other nonsense,

“We are not in a War on Terror,” Hasner said. “This is a civilizational struggle against an ideology of Sharia Islam.”

“It’s not just a threat on foreign soil,” he continued. “It’s also a threat from those who seek to destroy us from within. And we have a problem of domestic terrorism both in the violent form as well as in the civilizational jihad that we’re witnessing here in our own country and our own state.”

Adam Hasner: Islamophobe for Congress

BY 

Congress’s anti-Islam caucus will likely grow in November, and Florida’s Adam Hasner may be its worst new member

Rep. Michele Bachmann has gotten a lot of attention lately for her witch hunt against Muslims in the U.S. government, but she’s not alone. In addition to the four lawmakers who signed on to her letters, there are a handful of others who together might be called the Islamophobia Caucus — and their ranks are likely to swell after November, thanks in part to one of the caucus’ most outspoken members, Rep. Allen West.

After redistricting made West’s 22nd Florida congressional district slightly more liberal, he moved to the 18th. Running in his place is Adam Hasner, the former Florida House majority leader who abandoned a previous bid for the Senate. Hasner has already earned top-flight endorsers, including Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and West himself, as well as several major conservative organizations.

But perhaps a bit farther down the list is Pam Geller, the anti-Islam blogger and activist who spearheaded the effort against the so-called ground zero mosque. While she may not have officially endorsed Hasner, they’re clearly comrades in the fight against Shariah law. “Pamela [Geller] and I were on the front lines of that together, fighting to make sure that we kept her safe here,” Hasner told a Fort Lauderdale crowd in June of last year. For her part, Geller has written numerous blog posts praising Hasner, whom she declared to be “my friend.” “So many patriots and elected officials joined us, like Adam Hasner,” she wrote in June of last year. Here’s a photo of them posing together from her blog. (Hasner did not reply to requests for comment.)

As the Florida Independent noted in September of last year, Hasner has been involved in a “long-time crusade against the supposed threat of Sharia in the U.S.” In 2009, he appeared on a panel in D.C. with Geller and Frank Gaffney, the man behind Bachmann’s with hunt, according to a press release unearthed by the liberal research group American Bridge. Robert Spencer, another key figure in the Islamophobia cottage industry, called Hasner a “fearless truth teller” (here’s a photo them posing together via Spencer’s blog, Jihad Watch).

Before that, Hasner invited notorious Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders to Florida. “When I invited Geert Wilders to join me for a Free Speech conference in Palm Beach County, not only did the hotel cancel its plans to have him come in, but I was the one who was asked by the Hamas front group, the Council on Arab-Islamic Relations, to resign from the Florida House of Representatives, because I was an Islamophobe and a hater,” he said in the Fort Lauderdale speech. Wilders has made crusading against Islam his top priority. He was under house arrest for hate speech in Holland and is barred from visiting several countries.

When Hasner caught flak for the invitation, he was unperturbed. “These are the same people who have been attacking me all session. This isn’t about being anti-Islam, this is all about the right to free speech and they are trying to stifle it,” he casually told the St. Petersburg Times in April 2009. Wilders personally thanked Hasner in his speech, saying, “We need strong leaders like we have here today, Allen West and Adam Hasner. We need strong men like that.”

Within just a few days of the Wilders speech, it was an event that Hasner did not attend that raised eyebrows. He apparently boycotted an imam’s opening prayers at the state Legislature. The Palm Beach Post reported at the time:

As usual, the Florida House opened session today with a prayer. But for the first time this year (and possibly the first time ever), that prayer was led by an imam, Qasim Ahmed, from the Islamic Learning Institute in Tampa. The prayer was videotaped by Ahmed Bedier, United Voices of America director, who remarked on the absence of House Majority Leader Adam Hasner, R-Boca Raton. Bedier said he was videotaping the “historic” moment. “We did notice Hasner’s empty chair. That’s definitely noticed,” Bedier said… Hasner said he wasn’t on the floor this morning for personal reasons and noted the iman was in the House at the invitation of Rep. Jim Waldman, D-Coconut Creek. “It’s Jim Waldman’s right as a member to invite whomever he wants,” Hasner said.

In 2011, according to a YouTube video of a speech uncovered by American Bridge, Hasner boasted about the real reason for his absence two years earlier. “When the imam who was invited by a state representative who was a Democrat from here in Broward County, when he was invited to give the morning prayer at the Florida House of Representatives, and I boycotted the prayer, I was the one who was ridiculed,” he said.

In 2008, Hasner helped found an anti-Shariah group called Florida Security Council with an activist named Tom Trento. While Hasner was never an official member, he touted his involvement with the organization, which later changed its name to United West. “You cannot fight an enemy when you will not acknowledge that an enemy even exists, and that enemy has a name, and that is Shariah-compliant Islam,” Hasner told a local conservative group in March of last year. “We cannot allow political correctness and multiculturalism or appeasement to cripple our defenses at home or abroad.”

Alex Seitz-Wald is Salon’s political reporter. Email him at aseitz-wald@salon.com, and follow him on Twitter @aseitzwald.
MORE ALEX SEITZ-WALD.

Florida Law Enforcement Comes Under Scrutiny For Repeatedly Using Anti-Islam Trainer

(Via IslamophobiaToday.com)

Florida law enforcement comes under scrutiny for repeatedly using anti-Islam trainer

by 

Sam Kharoba fancies himself an “expert” on terrorism. The Jordanian-born Kharoba, a Christian, believes the founder of Islam, the Prophet Muhammad, is a “pedophile, a serial killer, a rapist.” And he’s teaching the police officers of Florida, where he is based, these claims in courses on Islam and terrorism.

But a coalition of 30 Muslim organizations is now raising the heat on Kharoba and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). A detailed letter sent this month to the FDLE commissioner outlines Kharoba’s anti-Muslim statements and demands that “Kharoba be removed from your approved list of trainers and not be approved to train anyone associated with the FDLE.”

The letter comes after the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) in Florida obtained public records documenting the training given by Kharoba. According to the group, Kharoba has trained police officers in Florida at least 21 times from 2005-2012. The letter also states that “Kharoba has neither the academic nor the operational background to qualify as a subject matter expert on either Islam or countering violent extremism.”

The revelations about Kharoba’s trainings, paid for with taxpayer money, come over a year after a lengthy Washington Monthly expose of Kharoba and the larger industry of self-styled “experts” on terrorism that defame Islam and Muslims. Among Kharoba’s outrageous statements that the outlet highlighted:

When you have a Muslim that wears a headband, regardless of color or insignia, basically what that is telling you is ‘I am willing to be a martyr.’

Islam is a highly violent radical religion that mandates that all of the earth must be Muslim.

Anyone who says that Islam is a religion of peace, is either ignorant or flat out lying.

The best way to handle these people is what I call legal harassment

The FDLE is reviewing the Muslim coalition’s concerns, but a spokeswoman also told a Florida newspaper that “We have utilized [Kharoba] in the past as a counter-terrorism instructor and received positive feedback on those taking the course, no complaints.”

The letter highlights some damning features of that feedback. One law enforcement agent said that, after taking Kharoba’s class, he or she was “going to make sure we have completed survey of existing ME/Muslim population and have a clearer understanding of their properties.” Another said: “This can be very useful knowing that Shiite is more radical than Sunni.”

A FDLE public information officer, Keith Kameg, offered no new information in a brief interview, saying that the department is “reviewing” the coalition’s concerns and that they have received “positive feedback” from officers who had trained under Kharoba.

Questions have also been raised about Kharoba’s credentials. As Florida journalist Cristela Guerra recently wrote, Kharoba has “no official certification in counterterrorism or degree in Middle Eastern studies, let alone experience in the military or law enforcement…Kharoba bases his qualifications on his life experience in Amman, Jordan.” Guerra also reported that while a spokeswoman for Florida law enforcement “emphasized [that] Kharoba is not certified in counterterrorism training,” he was allowed to teach because he was “granted an exception to work in FDLE-sanctioned training centers.”

Kharoba was also the subject of a 2005 complaint filed by a Muslim law enforcement officer with the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission. The commission found that “the instructor made numerous statements and comments offensive to complainant based on his religion (Muslim).”

Nezar Hamze, the executive director of CAIR’s Florida branch, said that a meeting with Florida law enforcement officials over this issue will likely be held after Ramadan.

From the Looniverse: Terry “Quran Burner” Jones Hangs Effigy of Barack Obama Outside Church

It’s Friday, and time for some good, hearty laughs.

We know Pastor Terry Jones Yosemite Sam, is the male equivalent of Pamela Geller, and hence we know him as: The Looniest Pastor Ever.

Jones most recent attention-seeking gimmick was to hang an effigy of President Barack Obama outside of his Dove World Outreach Church (which is still for sale!). Jones’ bid for attention was successful, and he’s likely going to get a call from the Secret Service as well.

By hanging Obama’s effigy, the Qur’an burning Jones was more or less killing two birds with one stone: combining his hatred for Muslims and his racist attitude towards Blacks. (Terry Jones and his ilk believe that Obama is a secret-Mooslim seeking to Islamize and conquer the “Christian United States,” and by hanging his effigy he was essentially provoking comparisons to the lynching of Blacks.)

Of course there will be those who see this and applaud, or say it is benign, but they are the very same people who are most outspoken in castigating and linking Islam to protests in the Muslim world that involve the burning of an American flag or an effigy of a Western leader.

So, for the purposes of lightening up your day, here’s the looniest pastor’s most recent sides-splitting antic:

(Huffington Post)

The Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Fla., has hanged an effigy of President Barack Obama from a gallows on its front lawn, a move DWOC pastor Terry Jones said was in response to Obama’s recent endorsement of same-sex marriage, as well as his stance on abortion and what Jones called his “appeasing of radical Islam.”

According to the Broward-Palm Beach New Times, the U.S. Secret Service is currently investigating Jones in response to the display.

“The Secret Service is aware of this incident and will conduct appropriate follow-up,” Secret Service spokesman Brian Leary told the paper’s “The Pulp” blog.

The effigy is suspended from a makeshift gallows with a noose of yellow rope, has a doll in its right hand and a rainbow-colored gay pride flag in its left.

In a telephone interview with The Huffington Post, Jones said the flag was meant to call attention to Obama’s stance on same-sex marriage and that the baby doll is there because the president is “favorable toward abortion.”

Jones also said that radical Islam is “the most dangerous threat to life and national security in America.”

There is also an Uncle Sam dummy standing at the base of the gallows outside the DWOC. Jones told HuffPost that the Obama effigy had originally been positioned to be hanging Uncle Sam when the display went up two weeks ago, but that the church changed the display on Wednesday.

The words “Obama is Killing America” are printed on a trailer nearby.

The DWOC came under intense scrutiny in 2011 after Jones burned the a copy of the Quran, a move which sparked three days of violent rioting in Afghanistan that resulted in the deaths of at least 21 people, including seven U.N. workers.

In addition to its higher profile controversial moves, the Dove World Outreach Center has also been criticized for its internal rules, which The Smoking Gun has called “cult-like.”

In the church’s Academy Rulebook, written by Jone’s wife and published in 2007, prospective ministers are directed to cut off most contact with family members.

This is not the first time that an effigy of the country’s first black president has been hanged.

In March 2010, a teacher at a failing Rhode Island school hanged an effigy of Obama in his classroom. That same month, another dummy was found hanging on Main Street in the Georgia hometown of President Jimmy Carter.

In 2009, a Kentucky grand jury refused to indict two men who hanged an Obama effigy on the campus of the University of Kentucky. The men had been charged with burglary and disorderly conduct, the latter count associated with hanging the effigy. The lawyer for the two men said that the disorderly conduct charge violated his clients’ rights under the First Amendment.

What ever will the good pastor come up with next?

Politicians are Politely Avoiding Tea Party Convention

Politicians are politely avoiding Tea Party Convention

by Scott Powers (Orlando Sentinel)

The Tea Party opens a long-planned convention tonight in Daytona Beach, expecting 1,200 delegates, dozens of speakers — but almost no big-name politicians.

None of the leading Republican presidential candidates and only two of the five U.S. Senate candidates agreed to speak at the three-day Florida Tea Party Convention at the Volusia County Ocean Center.

And top Republican officeholders who have previously courted Tea Party support — Gov. Rick Scott, Attorney General Pam Bondi, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and U.S. Rep. Allen West of Plantation — also sent their regrets.

Organizers said they still expect two presidential candidates: U.S. Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, and former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania. But neither campaign would confirm they’re coming, and their campaign schedules don’t list the convention.

Sid VanLandingham, the convention’s communications director, blamed the busy campaign season, saying a regional event has a tough time competing for attention.

“The [politicians’] schedulers, they’re making last-minute decisions, hopping from place to place, and it’s changing constantly,” he said.

In fact, all of the politicians who responded to Sentinel inquiries cited scheduling conflicts, though the convention dates were set months ago. And their absence leaves many observers puzzled, considering how popular tea-party events have been among most Republican candidates.

Liberals say the depiction of tea partyers as “extremists” — especially on issues such as immigration — is prompting candidates to keep their distance.

“A lot of politicians are worried about being painted by that association, especially as we get into the real meat of the election cycle,” said Mark Ferrulo, executive director of the liberal, Tallahassee-based Progress Florida.

The convention has attracted more than 30 political and social conservatives — many from out of state — as speakers. Among them: John Michael Chambers, founder of the Save America Foundation; Ralph Reed, founder of the Faith & Freedom Coalition; and Mathew Staver, founder of the Liberty Counsel.

VanLandingham, whose home group is the South Lake 912 Tea Party of Clermont, said the big-name politicians might have been a draw, but they are not the point.

“It’s a grass-roots gathering of people from around the state to share what works, what doesn’t work, and to share projects,” he said, citing workshops on how to organize for the 2012 elections.

The only statewide candidates expected to come are Mike McCalister of Plant City and Craig Miller of Winter Park, both underdog candidates for U.S. Senate.

Those who expressly said they are not coming include GOP presidential candidates Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich and Jon Huntsman, and GOP Senate candidates Adam Hasner, George LeMieux and U.S. Rep. Connie Mack.

A whirlwind of controversy in the past two weeks could have played a role, after the convention invited anti-Islam activist Pamela Geller to speak and an American Muslim civil-rights group, the Council of American-Islamic Relations, protested.

“They [CAIR] put pressure, I think, on some of the state officials, and I think some of the state officials, in their judgments, they declined to go,” VanLandingham said. “Their [the officials’] reasons were ‘prior commitments.’ ”

Geller writes an anti-Islam blog called Atlas Shrugs and leads an organization called “Stop Islamization of America.” Last year, she received wide attention — and stoked bitter anger from American Muslim groups — with her harshly worded opposition to a proposed Muslim community center a few blocks from ground zero in New York City.

Last month, CAIR sent letters to Florida politicians urging them not to attend the convention if Geller was on the schedule. And when Rubio and Scott indicated they would not come, CAIR issued a news release thanking them.

Geller said CAIR tries to get her appearances canceled or boycotted wherever she goes. But she said she is certain her appearance in Daytona had nothing to do with all the declined invitations.

“The politicians decided not to participate before this controversy began,” she said in an email.

But CAIR is not so sure.

“In other states, elected officials have pulled out and do not want to be on the same stage as her,” said CAIR media-relations director Ahmed Rehab.

Sen. Marco Rubio and Gov. Rick Scott Not Sharing Stage with Islamophobe Pamela Geller

“If you are an Islamophobe, and even Tea Party Politicians don’t want to hang out with you, you are in trouble.”

We live in the age of organized Islamophobia. Anti-Muslims coalesced after 9/11 and created, in effect, an industry that sought to influence public officials, government bodies and the masses across the United States and Europe. While the forces involved may come from different backgrounds in terms of ideology, faith and political persuasion they are united in their efforts to demonize Islam and Muslims.

Anti-Muslim Islamophobes have created a structure of Islamophobia that cuts across many levels. They hope that in people’s minds Islam will become the new Nazism and Communism combined or worse, because at least the former two enemies of humanity were “Western” and had some “rationality,” whereas Islam is the incomprehensible beast from the East.

Reza Aslan explains it well:

Simply put, Islam in the United States has become otherized. It has become a receptacle into which can be tossed all the angst and apprehension people feel about the faltering economy, about the new and unfamiliar political order, about the shifting cultural, racial, and religious landscapes that have fundamentally altered the world. Across Europe and North America, whatever is fearful, whatever is foreign, whatever is alien and unsafe is being tagged with the label ‘Islam.’ (No god but God)

Islamophobes work assiduously to push their agenda. They have boosted the profiles of (fake)ex-Muslims, (fake)scholars, and created a network of think tanks, foundations, “terror experts,” bloggers that have produced hate groups such as ACT! for America and SIOA amongst others.

Their activism is strong and they won’t stop anytime soon because that is what they get paid to do!

For some time American Muslims must have felt alone in fighting the scourge of bigotry and hatred that was aimed at them, however efforts such as ours here show that decent people from all walks of life can come together to fight the menace of fear-mongering and prejudice.

It is through the efforts of loonwatchers that we have agitated the SPLC and even the ADL to take firm stands against the Islamophobia movement. Loonwatchers were also instrumental in first booting Geller from the Hyatt Place in Sugarland, Texas and then evicting her crew from the Hutton Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee where they planned a “Sharia Conference” that was really more of a love-in for the vanguard of Islamophobia.

Now, according to several reports, another victory, both Sen. Marco Rubio and Gov. Rick Scott, Republicans from Florida say they will not participate in a Tea Party Convention where they would have shared the stage with Pamela Geller and another Islamophobe:

Rubio and Scott are listed as “confirmed speakers” at the convention, but representatives of their respective offices told CAIR-FL that the event is not on the senator’s nor the governor’s official schedule.

Before we published our article asking loonwatchers to contact both Rubio and Scott the two were still confirmed speakers at the Tea Party Convention. It is not out of the realm of possibility that Rubio and Scott may end up showing up for the convention, they are after all Republicans, but if this stands it is another strong rebuke to Geller, Spencer and the rest of the anti-Muslim Islamophobia movement.

Daniel Tutt writes that Islamophobes have noted that there is push back against them, and they are none too happy about it, this is why it is an opportune moment to point out that we have to continue to hound the Islamophobes. An elected official should never share the same podium as a Pamela Geller, the FBI should never allow its employees to be instructed or lectured by a Robert Spencer, universities should never invite a Nonie Darwish to their campus to deliver speeches on “Islam,” or “Sharia.”

We shouldn’t rest on our laurels! Loonwatchers should capitalize on the momentum and actively campaign, using fliers, letters, phone calls, organizing protests and rallies where ever and when ever Islamophobes attempt to gain legitimacy. We will do our part by exposing them for the frauds they are and giving you the ammunition to shed light on their hatred.

Broward GOP Treats Muslims Worse Than Other Republicans

Allen West with Pamela “the loon” Geller

NPR exposes Allen West’s antagonistic attitude toward Islam and Muslims.

CAIR: Broward GOP Treats Muslims Worse Than Other Republicans

by Lisa Rab (Broward New Times)

U.S. Rep. Allen West has already tried to end federal funding for National Public Radio. But if he needed another reason to hate NPR, yesterday’s “All Things Considered” segment should do the the trick.
The story explored West’s view of Islam as a “totalitarian, theocratic, political ideology,” and his ongoing rhetorical battle with Nezar Hamze, the executive director of the South Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. No news there — the West/Hamze controversy has already been well-documented on the Pulp. But NPR took the story one step further, suggesting that Broward Republicans were more anti-Muslim than their GOP comrades in other states.

Last month, Hamze attempted to join the Broward Republican Executive Committee, and was soundly rejected by a “pit of discrimination.”

Yet committee chairman Richard DeNapoli told NPR:  ”I really don’t think this had anything to do with religion. It’s just that this was a widely known circumstance where he had made statements against Allen West, and the members reacted to that.”

Strike one. Broward Republicans will defend West to the end, even if it makes them look like bigots on national radio. But wait, there’s more!

“CAIR officials say they have good relations with other Republicans, but that in South Florida at least, the Republican Party and their Tea Party supporters have made Muslims feel unwelcome,”  NPR reporter Greg Allen said.

Ouch. This means South Florida — a predominantly Democratic area– is allegedly more prejudiced against Muslims than other Republican strongholds.

Congratulations, Broward. You are the new Strom Thurmond.

Sam Ebadi Stabbed for Saying He’s a Muslim

Islamophobia? What Islamophobia? The hordes of anti-Muslim Islamophobes will probably blame Sam Ebadi for saying he was a Muslim and getting stabbed.

Deputies: St. Pete man stabbed victim because he’s Muslim

(ABCActionNews)


ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – A St. Petersburg man is charged with a hate crime after he allegedly stabbed another man because he’s a Muslim.

“He simply made the mistake of stating he was a Muslim, and it almost cost him his life.” said Ali Ebadi, the son of victim Sam Ebadi.

According to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, 52-year-old Bradley Strott and Ebadi had been talking about religion when the man told Strott he was a Muslim.

He then became upset, grabbed the victim by his shirt and stabbed the man in the neck with his pocket knife, according to Strott’s arrest affidavit.

Strott said that “Muslims are the root of the problems,” the report states.  Ebadi was taken to an area hospital where he has remained since the attack. “He tried to murder my father and he spent a day in jail, I do not want another muslim family to have to go through what I go through.” said Ali.

Strott has been charged with aggravated battery and was booked into the Pinellas County Jail late Friday night.  He bonded out Saturday.

The Tampa Chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations have stepped in and are talking with the FBI about this attack.

According to spokesperson Ramzy Kilic with the organization, the FBI is working with local law enforcement to see if they can upgrade the charges to a hate crime.  Ebadi is expected to be released from the hospital on Monday.

America’s Islamophobic Politician Takes a Step Back

Spencer and Geller’s champion seems to be taking a step back on his extremist rhetoric, even saying he “respects Islam.” Can you imagine Spencer ever saying that?

Allen West used to be fond of saying Islam is not a religion at all but it now seems he is changing his tune and claiming that he against the “radical jihadist movement” and most surprisingly of all that he “respects Islam.” I don’t believe him at all, it sounds to me like when Geller said she “loves Muslims.” Don’t you love how deceptive these

Allen West defends remarks on Islam

By William Gibson

Several religious leaders told South Florida Congressman Allen West on Wednesday they have “deep concern” over his recent comments about a Muslim colleague in Congress and about “your tendency to offer intemperate comments about Islam.”

West immediately replied that he respects Islam, has fought to protect religious freedom and has directed his scorn only at “a radical jihadist movement.”

The flap came over West’s comments at town hall meetings in South Florida and in a recent interview on the “Shalom Show,” a TV program about Jewish life and Israel.

The religious leaders from Jewish, Christian and inter-faith groups wrote a letter to West accusing him of calling U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., the “antithesis of the principles on which this country was established” because he is Muslim.

“Regrettably, this is just the latest example of your tendency to offer intemperate comments about Islam,” the letter says. “At a town hall meeting during your campaign, you characterized Islam as America’s enemy and asserted, `Islam is a totalitarian, theocratic political ideology; it is not a religion.’ Such untrue and inflammatory remarks intensify an unsettling trend of anti-Muslim rhetoric and fear in our country. They are also likely to confuse your constituents as to the differences between radical, Islamic extremists and non-violent adherents to Islam.”

The letter was signed by the Rev. Welton Gaddy, president of the Interfaith Alliance; Rabbi Jack Moline, director of public policy for The Rabbinical Assembly; Rabbi David Saperstein, director and counsel of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism; and the Rev. J. Brent Walker, executive director of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty.

In response, West said on Wednesday his comments on Ellison “are not about his Islamic faith but about his continued support of CAIR (the Council on American Islamic Relations.”

“It is the extremist, radical element that has hijacked Islam that presents a dangerous threat to both our country and our allies throughout the world,” West said in a return letter. “This radical jihadist movement has no place in the United States of America or anywhere on earth.”

“The problem is, these fanatics are often supported by certain groups and organizations that masquerade as more peaceful moderates,” West wrote. “Organizations such as CAIR have long histories of supporting violent anti-American and anti-Israel terrorist organizations such as Hamas, Hezbollah and the Muslim Brotherhood.”

West told the letter-writers he shares their goal to exercise and safeguard religious tolerance.