‘Mus­lims not go­ing any­where’

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS -

NEW YORK: Faith lead­ers and civil rights ac­tivists have warned pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump that Mus­lim Amer­i­cans who live in the US “are not go­ing any­where”.

Ten months after Trump pro­posed to ban the im­mi­gra­tion of all Mus­lims to the US, Ni­had Awad, na­tional ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Coun­cil of American-Is­lamic Re­la­tions said at a press con­fer­ence that Mus­lims would not move, re­gard­less of who won the elec­tion.

“We are not go­ing any­where and we will not be in­tim­i­dated or marginalised.

“God will­ing, the American Mus­lim com­mu­nity will con­tinue to mo­bilise to challenge big­otry, to up­hold jus­tice and pro­tect free­doms and rights of all Amer­i­cans,” he said.

He was joined by other Mus­lim, Jewish and Chris­tian lead­ers who asked Trump to ditch his di­vi­sive rhetoric and adopt a more pos­i­tive and in­clu­sive tone to com­bat the fear cur­rently felt by many women, peo­ple of colour and mi­nor­ity groups.

“We will hold the new pres­i­dent to the high­est stan­dard in de­fend­ing the rights of all those re­sid­ing in our na­tion as guar­an­teed by the US con­sti­tu­tion,” he said.

“To those who are fear­ful, know that Amer­ica is your home and the home for your chil­dren. This is your fu­ture. You are not go­ing any­where, and you have the same rights and re­spon­si­bil­i­ties as all other Amer­i­cans.”

Awad added that young peo­ple are “ter­ri­fied” by Trump’s pro­pos­als in the US, the only coun­try they have ever known.

Imam Jo­hari Ab­dul-Ma­lik, di­rec­tor of out­reach at the Dar Al Hi­jrah Is­lamic Cen­ter in Vi­rig­ina, said he hoped Trump would work by the val­ues he held up at his vic­tory speech, such as Trump’s call for unity and to stand for the civil lib­er­ties of all Amer­i­cans.

“It is our com­mit­ment to reach out and en­gage in so­cial change that will im­prove the qual­ity of life in Amer­ica, not just for his­tor­i­cal mi­nori­ties but also for white and mid­dle class Amer­i­cans who have got­ten be­hind the tenor of the US po­lit­i­cal process.”

An­thony Romero, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the American Civil Lib­er­ties Union, said he urged the pres­i­dent-elect to change path on “wrong­headed” and “un­con­sti­tu­tional” pro­pos­als such as de­port­ing Mus­lims, ex­treme sur­veil­lance and pun­ish­ing women for get­ting abor­tion. – The In­de­pen­dent

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