The USA: “Now is a time when none of us can afford to remain seated or silent.”

What Others Are Saying

“Now is a time when none of us can afford to remain seated or silent. We must all stand up to be counted.” – Dan Rather, Journalist

History will demand to know which side were you on. This is not a question of politics or party or even policy. This is a question about the very fundamentals of our beautiful dan-rather-2experiment in a pluralistic democracy ruled by law.

When I see neo-Nazis raise their hands in terrifying solute, in public, in our nation’s capital, I shudder in horror. When I see that action mildly rebuked by a boilerplate statement from the President-elect whom these bigots have praised, the anger in me grows. And when I see some in a pliant press turn that mild statement into what they call a denunciation I cannot hold back any longer.

Our Declaration of Independence bequeaths us our cherished foundational principle: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

These truths may be self-evident but they are not self-replicating. Each generation has to renew these vows. This nation was founded as an opposite pole to the capriciousness of an authoritarian monarch. We set up institutions like a free press and an independent court system to protect our fragile rights. We have survived through bloody spasms of a Civil War and a Civil Rights Movement to extend more of these rights to more of our citizens. But the direction of our ship of state has not always been one of progress. We interned Japanese Americans, Red Baited during the McCarthy era, and more. I feel the rip tide of regression once again swelling under my feet. But I intend to remain standing.

In normal times of a transition in our presidency between an incoming and outgoing administration of differing political parties, there is a certain amount of fretting on one side and gloating on the other. And the press usually takes a stance that the new administration at least deserves to have a chance to get started – a honeymoon period. But these are not normal times. This is not about tax policy, health care, or education – even though all those and more are so important. This is about racism, bigotry, intimidation and the specter of corruption.

But as I stand I do not despair, because I believe the vast majority of Americans stand with me. To all those in Congress of both political parties, to all those in the press, to religious and civic leaders around the country. your voices must be heard. I hope that the President-elect can learn to rise above this and see the dangers that are brewing. If he does and speaks forcibly, and with action, we should be ready to welcome his voice. But of course I am deeply worried that his selections of advisors and cabinet posts suggests otherwise.

To all of you I say, stay vigilant. The great Martin Luther King, Jr. knew that even as a minority, there was strength in numbers in fighting tyranny. Holding hands and marching forward, raising your voice above the din of complacency, can move mountains. And in this case, I believe there is a vast majority who wants to see this nation continue in tolerance and freedom. But it will require speaking. Engage in your civic government. Flood newsrooms or TV networks with your calls if you feel they are slipping into the normalization of extremism. Donate your time and money to causes that will fight to protect our liberties.

We are a great nation. We have survived deep challenges in our past. We can and will do so again. But we cannot be afraid to speak and act to ensure the future we want for our children and grandchildren.”

The above comment was originally published today on Facebook by Dan Rather. the thedanrather@gmail.com

(Photo credit: You Tube)

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SEVENTY YEARS LATER -

OVER SEVENTY YEARS LATER – “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose” | “The more things change, the more they stay the same”

 

“When Hate is Promoted by Religious Leaders, Why Blame the Followers?”

Special Report

From the publisher of jewishinfoNews. The following article was originally published by Gatestone Institute and republished with permission by jewishinfoNews on June 27, 2016.

“Abdullah Hakim Quick, a Toronto imam, makes a speech where he gives his answer to the position of Islam on homosexuality: ‘The position is death.'” 

           by Raheel Raza

– Imam Abdullah Hakim Quick then goes on to connect being gay with Zionism — his anti-Semitic sentiments at their best. All this while standing at a pulpit. If this is not a crime of hate, then what is? Does this imam have nothing positive to speak about in his sermon, besides spreading the Islamist agenda of hate and bigotry?
– For years we have warned of the messages of hate emanating from the pulpit. We have spoken of the two different messages being given — one to the public and one in private.
– Why then do we act surprised when the Omar Mateens of the world take up arms and ruthlessly gun down an entire group of gays? This is what they are being taught by the likes of Imam Quick. They are acting out the hate that has been instilled in their minds and hearts.

In the aftermath of the bloodbath created by Omar Mateen at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, a plethora of opinions, ideas and causes have been spoken about. At the same time, a very disturbing picture about a specific aspect of this hateful ideology of Islamists has emerged. In my opinion, there is no doubt that Mateen was an Islamist influenced by the jihadist agenda of fanatic hate for the gay communities.

For those of us reform-minded Muslims who have been battling the rise in radical Islamist agendas for the past decade, this development is no surprise. In our declaration, we say right at the top:

“We reject bigotry, oppression and violence against all people based on any prejudice, including ethnicity, gender, language, belief, religion, sexual orientation and gender expression.”

Why did we include this line in our message? Because we know of the hate that is directed towards the LGBTQ communities in Muslim lands. In Iran, thousands of gays have been executed; in Afghanistan, the Taliban bury them alive; in Saudi Arabia they are liable for death, and in other Muslim countries they are persecuted and abused if they admit to the preference.

One can always say that this is happening out there someplace else. We in North American pride ourselves on freedom of expression and tolerance towards those following a different lifestyle. We would never expect hate against others to be promoted in a liberal democracy.

However, not everyone in Canada thinks as we do. In our own hometown of pluralistic Toronto, hate against the LQBTQ community is alive and well.

Abdullah Hakim Quick is a Toronto imam who writes on his website:

“I have always stood against racism and ethnocentrism. I have been a lifelong advocate of women’s rights and for decades have encouraged the empowerment of young people. I pioneered the first social service agency for Muslims in Toronto, Canada (I.S.S.R.A.) whose doors were open to all — rich and poor, Muslim and non-Muslim, gay or straight. As a counselor I learned first-hand of the terrible violence inflicted upon gay people by bullies and I publicly spoke out against it….”

Yet in a YouTube video, the same Imam Quick says:

“… they said ‘What is the position of Islam on homosexuality?’ — they asked me this. This is a newspaper, right. So I said ‘Put my name in the paper. The position is death.’ And we cannot change Islam.”

Furthermore, Quick goes on openly to ridicule the Toronto gay community known as Salaam Canada. Many of them are my friends and I respect them. They have suffered at the hands of Islamists and felt they were safe in a city like Toronto. Not so anymore, and my heart goes out to them.

Abdullah Hakim Quick, a Toronto imam, makes a speech where he gives his answer to the position of Islam on homosexuality: “The position is death.” (Image source: TIFRIB video screenshot)

Mr. Quick then goes on to connect being gay with Zionism — his anti-Semitic sentiments at their best. All this while standing at a pulpit. If this is not a crime of hate, then what is? Does this imam have nothing positive to speak about in his sermon?

The point is that not only is he lying on his website, but he is spreading the Islamist agenda of hate and bigotry. He is also spouting an opinion that is not in the Quran. While the Quran (like other Abrahamic scriptures) does not condone homosexuality, there is no injunction to kill gays. However, because he is an imam and an imam is supposed to be knowledgeable, no one challenges him. Therefore, his opinion on gays (derived from sharia and concocted hadeethperhaps) is that death is the solution for gays.

He’s not the only one. Not long ago, Florida religious scholar Shaykh Farrokh said gently but with conviction in a speech “death is the sentence. There’s nothing to be embarrassed about. Death is the sentence.” He goes on to explain that killing gays is an act of compassion.

Why then do we act surprised when the Omar Mateens of the world take up arms and ruthlessly gun down an entire group of gays? This is what they are being taught by the likes of Imam Abdullah Hakim Quick. They are acting out the hate that has been instilled in their minds and hearts.

For years, we have warned of the messages of hate emanating from the pulpit. We have spoken of the two different messages being given — one to the public and one in private. Well, we live in a world where the two are meshed and the culprits need to be exposed. It is time Muslims knew what their religious leaders are saying and promoting from the pulpit.

Is this what we want our youth to hear? If not, what are we doing about it?

Raheel Raza is President of The Council for Muslims Facing Tomorrow, and co-founder of the Muslim Reform Movement. She is recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee medal for service to Canada and is  a Distinguished Senior Fellow with The Gatestone Institute. She also sits on the Advisory Board of The Mosaic Institute and The ACTV Foundation (The Alliance of Canadian Terror Victims).

(Feature Image Credit: bghelsinki)

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SEVENTY YEARS LATER -

OVER SEVENTY YEARS LATER – “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose” | “The more things change, the more they stay the same”

Jew hatred bigger and bolder!

COMMENT

by Alan Simons

The 10th. Annual Israeli Apartheid Week is now in full swing. Initiated by global demagogues of the far-left, extreme right and various Islamist groups, it continues to be promoted throughout the month of March in many parts of the world. Collectively, their sole aim is to incite hate, intolerance and antisemitism through all sectors of society through blatant lies, misinformation and propaganda.

These racists- let’s call a spade a spade- profess to be utterly convinced that their knowledge of the Middle East and of Jewish history is boundless. Coupled with their convoluted conspiracy theories, they are unshakable in their hatred not just of Israel, but of all Jews.

Throughout the year, we must continue to hold these harebrained miscreants accountable for their virulent Judeophobia and bigotry. Any slight passivity from us will be taken as a sign of weakness, thus helping their cause further.

Don’t be mislead by the various comments emanating from a number of Jewish sources that Israeli Apartheid Week is losing its momentum and strength. I call it “regrouping.” The Jew-haters, after 10 years of plodding their way around the globe have more than ever consolidated their objectives and strategy. Strengthening Israeli Apartheid Week, together with building their Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaigns and recruiting well-known journalists to their cause, have made successful inroads that must be recognised.  Media coverage at its best!

Fortunately, there are occasions where media openly rise in support of honest reporting. Here’s one example written by Greg Sheridan and published recently in The Australian. Its headline is: “Evil and deeply untrue.” Here in part, is what Sheridan has to say:

“WE are living in a time of infamous lies against the state of Israel and the Jewish people. We are witnessing, even in Australia, a recrudescence of some of the oldest types of anti-Semitism. One of the worst recent examples of anti-Israel propaganda that led directly to anti-Semitic outbursts was the Four Corners episode Stone Cold Justice, purporting to be about treatment of Palestinian children in the West Bank.

The program featured as a guest reporter John Lyons, of this newspaper. I have the greatest respect for John. He has produced some outstanding journalism in his time. In the aerolite he wrote for this newspaper on February 8, he made some of the same allegations that were made on Four Corners. I found the allegations at best unproved and generally unconvincing.

However, the Four Corners program was a disgrace, a crude piece of anti-Israel propaganda that revived some of the oldest anti-Semitic tropes. In the year 2014, are we really going to allege again, on the basis of the flimsiest non-evidence you could imagine, that Jewish soldiers systematically physically crucify innocent children? Is there a school of anti-Semitism 101 operating out there? Do you not think that before you would air an allegation like that, if you had any real sense of editorial responsibility, you would be 100 per cent sure that it was true; you would track down the people alleged to have done it and get their testimony? The Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council has produced exhaustive rebuttals of virtually all the allegations in this program and I recommend readers visit the AIJAC website. The whole program was full of uncorroborated and intensely unlikely allegations.”

The article, in its entirety, can be read by >>> Clicking here <<<. I urge you to read it.

Photo credit: Irish4Israel

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