December 22, 2015
Contact: Olivia Alperstein
Communications and Policy Associate
***FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***
Progressive Congress Supports House Resolution Condemning Anti-Muslim Bigotry
Over 70 original cosponsors from the House of Representatives have introduced legislation condemning anti-Muslim hatred, violence, and bigotry. Progressive Congress is excited to see such a huge groundswell of support from Democratic Representatives. We call on other Representatives from both parties to answer the challenge to condemn anti-Muslim rhetoric in all forms.
Respect and acceptance will win out over fear and hatred. In response to recent events, acts of hatred against Muslims are on the rise. The organization Muslim Advocates has created a map that tracks anti-Muslim hate crimes, and the numbers are staggering. Certain politicians have fanned the flames with their rhetoric, encouraging acts of violence and refusing to take responsibility for their role in recent attacks against Muslims.
This is not the strong, bold vision of equality that our Founding Fathers envisioned. In fact, this plays into the hands of people who wish to tear apart the moral fabric of this country.
“The main purpose of terrorism is to provoke division,” Representative Eleanor Holmes-Norton said. “Terrorists lose when, instead, we embrace our Muslim brothers and sisters.”
Discrimination is un-American. All of us as individuals can and must stand up for all our fellow Americans. Progressive Congress is proud to support these Members of Congress as they lead the way toward a more tolerant, open nation.
Text of the Resolution follows:
The text of the House Resolution denouncing hate speech and hate crimes against Muslim-Americans follows:
Condemning violence, bigotry, and hateful rhetoric towards Muslims in the United States.
Whereas the victims of anti-Muslim hate crimes and rhetoric have faced physical, verbal, and emotional abuse because they were Muslim or believed to be Muslim;
Whereas the constitutional right to freedom of religious practice is a cherished American value and violence or hate speech towards any American community based on their faith is in contravention of our founding principles;
Whereas there are millions of Muslims in the United States, a community made up of many diverse beliefs and cultures, and both immigrants and native-born Americans;
Whereas this Muslim community is recognized as having made innumerable contributions to the cultural and economic fabric and well-being of American society;
Whereas hateful and intolerant acts against Muslims are contrary to the American values of acceptance, welcoming, and fellowship with those of all faiths, beliefs, and cultures;
Whereas these acts affect not only the individual victims but also their families, communities, and the entire group whose faith or beliefs were the motivation for the act;
Whereas Muslim women who wear hijabs, headscarves, or other religious articles of clothing have been disproportionately targeted because of their religious clothing, articles, or observances;
Whereas the rise of hateful and anti-Muslim speech, violence, and cultural ignorance plays into the false narrative spread by terrorist groups of Western hatred of Islam, and can encourage certain individuals to react in extreme and violent ways;
Resolved, That the House of Representatives—
(1) Expresses its condolences for the victims of anti-Muslim hate crimes;
(2) Steadfastly confirms its dedication to the rights and dignity of all its citizens of all faiths, beliefs, and cultures;
(3) Denounces in the strongest terms the increase of intimidation, violence, vandalism, arson, and other hate crimes targeted against mosques, Muslims or those perceived to be Muslim;
(4) Recognizes that the Muslim community in the United States has made countless positive contributions to our society;
(5) Declares that the civil rights and civil liberties of all United States citizens, including Muslims in the United States, should be protected and preserved;
(6) Urges local and Federal law enforcement authorities to work to prevent hate crimes; and to prosecute to the fullest extent of the law those perpetrators of hate crimes; and
(7) Reaffirms the inalienable right of every citizen to live without fear and intimidation, and to practice their freedom of faith.
Progressive Congress is a 501(C)3 organized based in Washington, D.C. that amplifies and strengthens connections between change makers in the grassroots Progressive community and lawmakers in Congress.