Fla. House GOP Leader Hosts Event Denying Religious Freedom
Posted 4/27/2009 11:14:00 AM
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 4/26/09)
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today called on GOP leaders to demand that Rep. Adam Hasner, the head of Florida’s House Republicans, step down from his leadership post for co-hosting an event at which the speaker said Islam should not be recognized as a legitimate faith and Muslims should not have religious freedom.
In his address to the so-called “Free Speech Summit” in Delray Beach, Fla., Dutch anti-Islam politician Geert Wilders said:
“Islam is not a religion. Islam is a totalitarian political ideologue. Islam [sic] heart lies at the Quran, and the Quran is a book that calls for hatred, that calls for violence, for murder, for terrorism, for war, and submission…We should also stop pretending that Islam is a religion…the right to religious freedom should not apply to Islam.”
SEE: Tell GOP Lawmakers to Reject Rep. Hasner’s Hate Event (United Voices)
Wilders also called for stopping Muslim immigration to the West, for removing Muslims from Western countries, for citizen loyalty oaths, for stopping the building of mosques, for closing down Islamic schools because they are “fascist” institutions, and for getting rid of “weak leaders.” He added that “we need strong leaders like here are [sic] today Allen West and Adam Hasner.”
Hasner is on the “host committee” for the conference and is pictured on an anti-Islam Internet hate site attending the event. He is shown with Pamela Geller, another conference sponsor, whose blog features categories such as “Advancing Islamic Lies,” “Islam 2008: Religion of Barbarism” and “Slavery: An Arab custom.” Geller has even been criticized by other Islamophobes for her extremism and for supporting far-right groups in Europe. She is currently involved in an Internet “flame war” over her support for an upcoming “Eurofascist” conference in Europe.
Another anti-Muslim group supporting the conference, ACT! for America, was recently involved in a controversy over a speech in Texas at which that group’s representative “described most or all Muslims in America as cooperating with terrorist organizations and supporting the overthrow of America.”
“It is unconscionable that a top leader of an American state legislature would host a gathering at which the faith of millions of Americans is denigrated and their rights denied,” said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. “Republican Party leaders in Florida and nationwide must demand that Representative Hasner step down from his leadership post because of his support for Geert Wilders’ Nazi-like message.”
He said American Muslims have repeatedly called on the Republican Party to repudiate anti-Muslim bigotry within its ranks.
Hooper noted that earlier this year, Hasner attempted to block a “Florida Muslim Capitol Day.” In an e-mail to more than a dozen Jewish lobbyists, he wrote: “By now, I can’t imagine you haven’t heard about this upcoming lobbying day for Muslims in Tallahassee…Do you all intend to be part of an information campaign in opposition to it?”
SEE: House Leader E-Mails Alert About Muslim Event to Jewish Lobbyists (St. Petersburg Times)
In 2007, Hasner sponsored a screening of the anti-Muslim film “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West” for state legislators.
SEE: Obsession with Hate
CAIR, America’s largest Muslim civil liberties group, has 35 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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CAIR-South Florida Executive Director Altaf Ali, 954-272-0490, 954-298-8214, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR-
Tampa Executive Director Ramzy Kilic, Tel: 813-514-1414 or 813-486-2529, E-Mail: email@example.com; CAIR National
Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-488-8787 or 202-744-7726, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR
Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787 or 202-341-4171, E-Mail: email@example.com