Orange County 2011 or Germany 1933? - updated 5/24/12

Orange County 2011 or Germany 1933?

by Sheila Musaji


Pamela Geller called on her supporters to protest a Muslim community fundraiser in Orange County, California:  The North Orange County Conservative Coalition, Tea Party Patriots, California Republican Assembly Yorba Linda-Placentia, ACT! for America, Concerned Citizens for the First Amendment, We Surround Them OC912, and others will show up Sunday to peacefully protest the anti-American, anti-Semitic movement with American flags only. 

This is what resulted from that plea for peaceful protest:  Youtube video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NutFkykjmbM

( 3/7 YouTube has pulled this video due to a “copyright claim”.  If you are on facebook it is available at https://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=10150102988117821&comments and it is on Video Cafe at http://videocafe.crooksandliars.com/scarce/hate-comes-orange-county )  The video is back online 3/8

Watch this video and decide if you think that such behavior does honor to the American flag (displayed prominently by the protestors), or to the ideals of America.  Do you think this protest taught all of those Muslim children an effective civics lesson and made them proud to be American Muslims?  Do you think that what was being shouted at them made them think of this “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

This response is what would be expected when Pamela Geller (co-founder with Robert Spencer of Stop the Islamization of America, SIOA which was designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center) and Brigitte Gabriel’s Act for America had any involvement.  (See Pamela Geller and SIOA, Robert Spencer, Brigitte Gabriel and ACT for America )

A CAIR-LA press release on this incident said

Hate comes to Orange County

ANAHEIM, Calif., March 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/—The Greater Los Angeles Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA) today released a video of a rally organized by anti-Muslim bigots to protest a February fundraising event held by an American Muslim relief group for relief work and charity in the U.S.

A few hundred protesters showed up to the rally, which was sponsored by groups such as: “We Surround Them OC 912” (a local Tea Party group), Rabbi David Eliezrie of Chabad—Yorba Linda, North Orange County Conservative Coalition, ACT! for America, and Pamela Geller (whose group “Stop the Islamization of America” has been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center).

Elected officials Congressmen Ed Royce and Gary Miller, and Villa Park Councilwoman Deborah Pauly also attended and spoke at the protest rally.

The event—held at Yorba Linda Community Center, a facility that has been frequented by Muslim families and businesses over the years—first became a target of anti-Muslim bigots over two of the fundraiser’s speakers, who were to speak on the importance of charity in Islam. Initial attempts of some groups to have the Yorba Linda Community Center and the Yorba Linda City Council cancel the fundraising event failed, followed by the protest. 

In a statement, CAIR-LA said:

“We support the First Amendment right of protestors anywhere in America to voice their concerns, dissent, and even hatred. However, when our nation’s foundational values of inclusiveness, pluralism and equality are attacked by some in favor of calls for advocating hate and violence, then all Americans have a responsibility to challenge and expose such bigotry and those who enable it.

“As the video shows, the rhetoric of the protesters became increasingly venomous toward the families and children who came to attend the ICNA fundraising dinner. Protesters shouted invective statements such as, “Go home terrorist,” “Muhammad is a pervert, Muhammad is a child molester,” “Go home and beat your wife, she needs a good beating,” at the event-goers.

“Even more disturbing was the participation and encouragement of elected officials in promoting the hateful protest rally. Villa Park Councilwoman, Deborah Pauly, while addressing the crowd at the rally, appeared to threaten Muslim event-goers. Congressman Ed Royce (R-40), in a troubling trend of disparaging Islam and its followers, added fuel to the fire by encouraging protesters to continue on with their hate-mongering. The attendance of Congressman Gary Miller (R-42) was a clear surprise, since he previously has engaged with all constituents, including Muslims, toward a better America.

“We strongly urge all elected officials in attendance to distance themselves from such an exhibition of hate and bigotry. We further ask residents and elected officials of Yorba Linda, Orange County and other parts of our nation to speak out against such hateful rhetoric and the continued Islamophobia that plagues our nation.”

I watched the video and it brought tears to my eyes and fear to my heart.  This looks and sounds like Germany in the 1930’s.  Here are just a few of the comments shouted at the Muslim families entering the community center:  “U.S.A! U.S.A! U.S.A!”  - “Terrorists! Terrorists! Terrorists!” - “We don’t want you here! Go home! Go home! Go home!” - “Take your Sharia and go home, you terrorist lovers. Your hands are bloody! Your money is bloody! Get out!” - “Muhammad was a fag” - “Muhammad was a fraud” - “You beat your women and you rape your children!” - “Why don’t you go beat up your wife like you do every night? Maybe you ought to go have sex with a nine-year-old, and marry her!”  Screamed by people with distorted faces, waving American flags.

Deborah Pauly, an elected representative said at this demonstration: 

What’s going on over there right now, make no bones about it, that is pure unadulterated evil ...  I know quite a few Marines who would be very happy to help these terrorists to an early meeting in Paradise

.”

“Over there” was the community center which Muslim families were entering.  I can see no other meaning to Councilwoman Pauly’s statement except that she knows United States Marines who would be happy to kill these men, women, and children because since they are Muslims, they must be terrorists.

Another elected representative who attended, Congressmen Ed Royce (R-Calif.)  chairs the international terrorism subcommittee of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.  I wonder if he listened to what the protestors were shouting, and to what Deborah Pauly said?  I also wonder if he agrees with Pauly?  Based on an article he wrote claiming that Islam and the American Melting Pot are an impossible brew, and on comments he made at RedCounty.com, he does:

On the Foreign Affairs Committee, I’ve tracked the growth of radical Islam, in Pakistan, Nigeria, Sudan and elsewhere. The threat of sharia law is real. It’s the death of individual liberties, especially for women.

I’ve held hearings on “Islamist terrorism,” the threat the 9/11 Commission identified. And I’ve been criticized for doing so. The Obama Administration refers to the bland threat of “violent extremism.” For years, I’ve made the point that we can’t tackle a problem if we don’t even call it by its name. 9/11, Fort Hood, Times Square and on and on demand candor.

Yet the attacks our nation has suffered aren’t the biggest threat. In a way, they’re a tactic to keep our eye off the ball, which is the “soft jihad” that the speakers in Yorba Linda preach. That is, attacking the institutions that make the U.S. great and protect our liberties. It’s an attack on our culture, including our culture of tolerance.

A big part of the problem is that our children have been taught in schools that every idea is equal, that no one should criticize other’s positions, no matter how odious. That’s multiculturalism, and it has paralyzed too many of our fellow citizens to make the critical judgment we need to prosper as a society. History has taught us time after time that unfortunately bad ideas have bad consequences.

The other side has its right to free speech. But so do we. We have a right, indeed an obligation, to challenge voices that seek to bring down our very system of liberty. That’s what we did yesterday.

Kudos to Karen Lugo and Deborah Pauly and the other protest organizers.

Kudos to Deborah Pauly?  Kudos for threatening American Muslims?  Frightening and insulting Muslim families including small children is the way to defend our system of liberty?  This protest represents a “culture of tolerance”?

Congressman Gary Miller (R-Diamond Bar) told the protestors “

I’m proud of you”, “I’m proud of what you are doing

.”

If the protestors were there because they objected to the speakers for the event and/or some of their alledged statements, why would they be shouting at ordinary American Muslims to “go home”,  and calling them terrorists? 

Orange County clearly has a problem with double standards, as the Orange County district attorney, Tony Rackauckas, announced just a few weeks ago that he was filing charges against the 11 Muslim students who interrupted Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren’s speech at UC Irvine a year ago.  After receiving petitions from faculty and interfaith groups to drop these charges, this is what an Orange County D.A. said:

Susan Kang Schroeder, chief of staff for the Orange County District Attorney, said her office would not be swayed by public opinion or special interest groups.

“The law against the disruption of a meeting has been on books for 100 years and was litigated at the California Supreme Court and it is constitutional,” Schroeder said.  “We’re sworn to uphold and defend the Constitution. You don’t have a First Amendment right to shut down other people’s right to speak and other people’s right to hear.”

Really?  Let’s see how quick the Orange County District Attorney’s Office is to file charges against those who shut down the Muslim communities “right to speak and right to hear”.

Those elected representatives of our government who participated in this hatefest should be ashamed.  They are obviously among those elected representatives who no longer question Islamophobia (and in fact endorse it) and who don’t understand the Constitution of the United States.  These individuals should not be in public office, and certainly don’t represent all of the people of their districts.  They need to be reminded that WE THE PEOPLE includes all of the people.  It would seem that these individuals should at the very least be censured in Congress.

This sort of anti-Muslim speech is noticed around the world.  Al Jazeera has posted an article including the video of Pauly’s statement, as has a paper in Pakistan.

A Jewish Journal article contained this remarkable statement by one of the Jewish protestors “We need to make a stand against this hatred,” said Yorba Linda resident Ron Shamas, who said at least 50 members of his synagogue came out to support the demonstration. “We see what has happened in Europe, and nobody did anything, and now they have so much trouble.”   Yes, indeed, we see and remember what happened in Europe, and shame on Jews who don’t see the similarities with this and the events of the 1930’s in Germany.  Never again should mean never again for anyone!  For a number of alarming statements by Jewish extremists, see Jewish “Ahavah shel achvah” Brotherly Love is Difficult for Some to Attain 

Islamophobia Today notes that There was also somebody sounding a Shofar (Ram’s horn) which while being used for prayer was also used in Biblical Times to call to War, and in this context it seems quite clear that it is being used as a call to war and intimidation. Why the hell would someone bring a shofar to protest a Muslim charity event?  Why indeed!

Rabbi David Eliezrie who was one of the organizers of this event had written an article about the Muslim students at UC Irvine who had disrupted a speech by the Israeli Ambassador and in that letter said It’s time that UCI consider suspension, and even expulsion, of those students who do not respect the basic tenets of free speech and academic freedom. The protesters attempted to terrorize the ambassador into silence. They almost succeeded. Such people are a threat to all in a civil society. If the university administration refuses to act, it becomes an accomplice to their acts of verbal violence and intimidation. 

It is very interesting that he can’t see the double standards here.  Such people as Rabbi Eliezrie truly “are a threat to all in a civil society.”

Robert Spencer has posted a strange article on his Jihad Watch site on this event in Orange County, supposedly written by the mysterious Roland Shirk.  The article attempts to downplay the bigotry shown in the video.  Here is one passage:  The footage was shot by the local chapter of Hamas-linked CAIR—who were strongly motivated to find the ugliest images and most obnoxious quotes they could…. And this is the best they could do: A group of Americans peacefully gathered behind a barricade, chanting to the suited men and hijabed women who trooped into the event, “No sharia!” and “Go home!” Given that the event featured foreign-born supporters of terrorism and sharia law, these were not outrageous sentiments for Californians to express. Anything less would amount to servility.


UPDATE 3/4/2011

Hussein Rashid has posted an excellent article on this incident and notes:  The Orange County Register states that the original plan was to protest the speakers at the event, a fairly normal occurence in American civic life. I do not believe the American Muslim community should give a platform to people who support designated terrorist organizations, or espouse anti-Semitic rhetoric. The speaker in question, Amir Abdel Malik Ali, was cited by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a “bigoted speaker.”    In this video, however, and by all reports, none of the protestors were actually protesting the speakers. They were yelling and screaming at people who had come to give money to help end domestic violence and homelessness. The protestors were saying that these were the actions of terrorists. They were cursing children as young as 4.  ...  There is no excuse for this behavior. It is pure, unbridled bigotry. There is no way to explain it away, and muddying the waters by saying there was anti-Semitic speaker there does not make it OK to call charity “terrorism,” or to terrorize young children.

Hussein Rashid also expresses forcefully the same concerns that I had with Deborah Pauly’s statement:  This is an elected representative presumably telling some of her constituents that US Marines should kill some of her other constituents—US citizens. For her, the people at the meeting were not human, were not citizens, were not constituents, but were “terrorists,” tried and convicted by her; and that is enough for her to call on the Marine Corps to exterminate them.    The fact that the Tea Party would be able to organize a hateful display should come as no surprise. As the foot soldiers of the Islamophobia industry, they were expected to be there. It goes to show how normal, and extreme, the hate has become. More worrisome is how elected officials not only do not see anything wrong with this, but are willing to throw out the Constitution to prove that they think Muslims need to be exterminated like vermin.

The Orange County Weekly reports that Representative Ed Royce (R-Fullerton) issued a statement today responding to a Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) “attack” on him for participating in an anti-Muslim rally in Yorba Linda.  In his explanation, Royce claims he appeared at the rally to “reject” two speakers who have been painted extremists and says it was “regrettable that some protesters at the community center yelled insults” at the guest’s supporters.

Justin Elliott talked with one of the parents who had to walk with her children through the gauntlet of protestors and he noted that The parking area for the event, which was sponsored by the Islamic Circle of North America [ICNA], was a bit of a walk from the entrance to the community center—and a valet service hired by ICNA backed out when its employees saw the angry protesters. 

It took a lot of courage for these ordinary Muslims to face that mob when even a valet service was frightened off. 

Joshua Stanton has just published an article that gave me hope that there are members of the Jewish community who are speaking up against such anti-Muslim sentiment as was expressed in this protest.  In this article he said Today is my day to feel sheepish as an otherwise proud American Jew. I am not only embarrassed but outraged and outright humiliated that people calling themselves Jews would in any way be associated with—much less co-sponsor—a protest against a fundraiser being held by a Muslim community organization in California. The protesters, as depicted on video, chanted “go home,” “why don’t you go home and beat your wife” and “Muhammad was a pervert.” Astoundingly, Jews—and even a rabbi—took part in the organizing of the event and were among the other, sadly diverse, voices of hate.  ...  While with Rabbi David Eliezrie I presume a temporary loss of sanity (the veins begin to pop out of my head when I try to understand his act of hatred any other way and my clarity of thought dissolves when I realize that I will soon hold the same title as a man who expressed such bigotry), Pamela Geller has no such excuse. In fact, she is working to build her career on the notion that Muslims are dangerous terrorists, singling them out much the way the Westboro Baptist Church blames gays for all of America’s woes. Both unoriginal and unpersuasive, this view has landed her prime-time television spots and fame in a way that casts doubt on the wellbeing of American society.  Somehow, someway, she manages to relate her views to Judaism.  ...  We, as Jews, comprise a religious community that knows what it is like to be on the outs, hated as new immigrants, hated for our religion. We are a community that loves equality and fairness—one that marched with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and sent so many young people on Freedom Rides to desegregate interstate transportation that Greyhound Buses began to look like Jewish summer camps.  ...  I can only pray that Pamela Geller’s hatred, so egregiously carried out in association with the name of my religion, is recognized for the blasphemy that it is—and do everything in my power to organize fellow Jews against her vitriol. Pamela Geller is a voice of hate who does not merit in any capacity use of the good name of Judaism. The institution she may seek to build is an embarrassment to the tradition she claims to be her own.

God bless Joshua Stanton for speaking up!  Now, I am waiting to hear from others in the interfaith community, and from our elected representatives.


UPDATE 3/5/2011 -  WHAT YOU CAN DO

CONTACT Councilwoman Pauly

From MPAC

:  “It is unconscionable that an elected official would promote the killing of Muslims and perpetuate anti-Muslim bigotry, regardless of the anti-American sentiment and inflammatory rhetoric of Imam Abdul Malik Ali,” said MPAC President Salam Al-Marayati. “It is imperative that all peoples of conscience call Councilwoman Pauly’s office and demand a retraction to her statement.”

TAKE ACTION: Call the Villa Park City Council today to demand that Councilwoman Deborah Pauly retract her statement. The Council may be reached at: (714) 998-1500. Councilwoman Pauly may be reached via email at: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

TALKING POINTS

Remember to be polite and respectful.  Here are a few suggested talking points you can use to help focus your message:

While I strongly oppose the inflammatory and anti-American rhetoric of Imam Abdul Malik Ali, the Councilwoman’s statement is hateful, Islamophobic and un-American. As an elected official, Councilwoman Pauly’s vile hate speech is outrageous and unacceptable in Orange County or anywhere in America. She has a moral responsibility as an elected official to retract her hate speech.
Muslim Americans make vital contributions every day. They teach our children, work in hospitals and protect the public safety as police officers and firefighters. They love this country just as we do and should not be placed under suspicion and painted with a broad brush.

SIGN PETITION TO Congressmen Miller and Royce: Denounce Calls for Violence Against Fellow Americans

From Change.org

  http://www.change.org/petitions/congressmen-miller-and-royce-denounce-calls-for-violence-against-fellow-americans?%3Fopt_new=t&opt_fb=t#?opt_new=t&opt_fb=t

CONTACT Congressman Ed Royce and Congressman Gary Miller

ED ROYCE:  Mail at 1110 E. Chapman Ave., Suite 207, Orange, CA 92866 Phone - (714) 744-4130 Fax - (714) 744-4056
 
GARY MILLER: 1800 E. Lambert Road, Suite 150, Brea, CA 92821 Phone: 714-257-1142, Fax: 714-257-9242

WRITE A LETTER TO YOUR LOCAL NEWSPAPER

American Friends Service Committee has a simple form for you to write to your local newspaper editor.  It was developed for another issue, but will work to find and email on this issue also.  https://secure2.convio.net/afsc/site/LteUser?lte.user=lte_resolve_zip&lte_id=13001

You might also write to some of these news providers and ask if they are covering this story -  Huffingtonpost.com
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  -  CNN http://www.cnn.com/feedback/forms/form11b.html?7  -  MSNBC Rachel Meddow .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  -  ED Show .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


UPDATE 3/6/2011

There are a few statements that have been made by participants in this protest.

The We Surround Them OC 912 group who attended has a post on their main page that says We Surround Them in Orange County.  We are not racists - we are not violent - we are just no longer silent.  The Orange County Conservative Coalition posted photos on their FB page that make this look like a 4th of July patriotic rally. 

Deborah Pauly said that the video was craftily edited to change the meaning of her words, and falsely make her look like she wanted Muslims raising money to feed the homeless to be killed by Marines.  She says that the way the shots in the video are interspersed, it seems to imply she is referring to the people inside the fundraiser, but she maintains she was referring to violent jihadists in the Middle East.  ...  “I was referring to terrorists who believe their actions of violence will lead them to paradise, and not the people at the fundraiser.”  Pauly further told NBC Los Angeles that Pauly stressed that the protest rally was aimed only at the two speakers, and not at Muslims in general. As it was ending, she said, a small group of more-radical people gravitated to the fundraiser’s doors and started hurling insults and chanting.  “We don’t even know who these people are, they arrived as our event was ending,” Pauly told City News Service. “They are a splinter group.”

Her claim that she was not referring to attendees of the fundraiser in her statement are pretty meaningless.  I would like to see her issue a full transcript of her speech at the protest.  There must be a transcript because it is clear that she is reading from notes and turning pages.  Her claim that the order of the video clips is what gives a menacing impression to her statement is nonsense.  It doesn’t matter what order the events happened, they all happened at the same event.  There is no apology here for the very real insults and bigotry that were displayed - and if she doesn’t agree with what this “splinter group” said and did, then she should clearly say so. 

An interesting sidebar to this story.  The Orange County Register reports that a recent survey of her district’s residents showed that “Eighty-six percent of the respondents had a neutral or positive response to whether the City Council represented residents well – a drop of 8 percent from the previous survey.”  Councilwoman Deborah Pauly said the drop in neutral or positive responses concerned her:  “Eight percent is a big drop,” Pauly said. “Maybe we’re not connecting with all the residents. We need to spend more time listening to them.”

Pauly certainly needs to spend more time listening to her Muslim constituents.  After this demonstration and her statements, I imagine the percentage will drop by more than eight percent next year.

Max Blumenthal reports why is the Jewish Federation and a who’s who of established Jewish organizations, from Birthright Israel to the New Israel Fund to JDate (even Rock The Vote is involved somehow), hosting one of the hate rally’s key organizers this weekend at a major gathering in Las Vegas billed as “an entertaining, interactive and educational celebration that will draw over 1,500 Jewish young adults (ages 22-45) from across North America?”    Last week, Rabbi David Eliezrie of the Yorba Linda chapter of Chabad was among a mob of local extremists who screamed racial epithets at immigrant families. On Monday, however, the rabbi will lead a session at “Tribefest” on “the Kabbalah of Love.” “Love has always been a central theme in Jewish teachings,” the event description reads. “In an interactive experience we will explore the mystical and classical sources about love.” How touching. 


UPDATE 3/16/11

The Voice of Orange County reports that

Villa Park City Council released a statement Tuesday saying that council members who speak in public do not automatically represent the city, a declaration meant to address Councilwoman Deborah Pauly’s controversial remarks made in February at protest of a Muslim charity event in Yorba Linda.

Pauly made several vitriolic statements about the Muslims attending the event. Among other things, she said “these who are assembling are enemies of America.” She also said she knew “quite a few marines who would be very happy to send these terrorists to an early meeting in paradise.”

Pauly, in an interview with Voice of OC, expressed regret about the blanket statements she made, saying her comments should have been directed at two controversial speakers at the event. However, she said she feared that singling out the two speakers could have endangered her life.

Here is the city’s statement in its entirety:

Comments made by Villa Park City Council members in public do not represent the City of Villa Park unless made with City Council approval.    The Villa Park City Council and the community support the Constitutional right to freedom of religion. We also condemn violence and threats of violence, and terrorism and threats of terrorism. Furthermore, we oppose any individual or group whose opinion runs counter to these values.

An earlier draft of the statement singled out Pauly. However, Council decided to omit her name from the final draft. The vote to issue the statement was 4-1, with Councilman Bill MacAloney dissenting.

Here are Pauly’s comments, also from the Voice of Orange County, referred to in the article above

... Pauly has said that her comments were directed at two keynote speakers at the event—Imam Siraj Wahhaj and Amir Abdel Malik Ali.

...  But Pauly never referenced the speakers in her speech and made a number of blanket statements about people whom she called “unwelcome invaders.”

In a recent interview, an emotional Pauly acknowledged that her statements were too general, saying that she “takes ownership” of that mistake. Choking back tears, Pauly said she should have directed her comments at Wahhaj and Malik Ali, but didn’t because she thought doing so could have endangered her life.

“I’ll be honest about why I did that,” Pauly said after a long pause. “Fear… I was afraid to speak out.”

This is utterly ridiculous.

The two speakers were Imam Siraj Wahhaj, who was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing but never charged, and Imam Amir Abdel Malik Ali, an Oakland cleric who is said to support Hamas and Hezbollah.

The speakers are individuals who may have controversial views.  That is not the sum of who they are, however.  For example, Imam Siraj Wahhaj is known in the Muslim community for his many audio tapes encouraging Muslims to be God-fearing, enjoining good and forbid evil, practice regular charity, stay away from drugs, abstain from pre-marital relations, etc.  His anti-drug work is long standing.  In 1988 he led his community in an anti-drug patrol in which they staked out drug houses in Bedford-Stuyvesant in the cold of winter for 40 days and nights, forcing the closure of 15 drug houses. This effort received high praise from the New York City Police Department and the media.  In 1991 he was the first Muslim to offer an opening prayer to the United States House of Representatives.  And, the term “unindicted co-conspirator” is not a statement of guilt.  See Unindicted co-conspirator Designation Not a Proof of Guilt

In the case of Imam Amir Abdel Malik Ali, he really does seem to have made a number of very questionable statements, and while I would hope that the American Muslim community would marginalize such individuals and not give them a platform that makes them seem like respectable members of the community, nevertheless that does not make the words of the protesters acceptable.

There are those who insist that the outpouring of hatred seen at this event in Orange County was a justified response to the presence of these speakers.  This makes no sense.  The epithets the protesters were shouting at those entering the charity event had nothing to do with the speakers or their controversial views.  The epithets were statements insulting and degrading Islam and Muslims generally.  And, Deborah Pauly’s statement about knowing “quite a few Marines who would be very happy to help these terrorists to an early meeting in Paradise.” is still unacceptable even if it was meant to refer only to the speakers.

In the United States, citizens are innocent until proven guilty.  We have freedom of thought and freedom of speech.  We don’t send in U.S. Marines to murder individuals who hold views that we disagree with.


UPDATE 3/25/2011

MPAC Press Release

On Tuesday, March 22, 2011, MPAC President Salam Al-Marayati and Civic Outreach Coordinator Saadia Khan joined about 200 people at a peaceful rally organized by the Villa Park Peace Coalition in Villa Park, CA.  Residents and interfaith leaders stood united to promote tolerance and peace and condemn a recent hate speech by Councilwoman Deborah Pauly, where she had called for the killing of Muslims.

Despite repeated calls for an apology during the City Council meeting which followed the rally, Pauly and her colleagues remained silent on the issue of hate speech. As a result, MPAC has now joined the Villa Park Peace Coalition in calling for Pauly’s resignation from office.

At the City Council meeting, many representatives and supporters of the Villa Park Peace Coalition expressed their concern over the divisiveness and environment of hate Pauly’s comments have created.

“Miss Pauly, you have failed as a political leader because of the divisiveness of your city,” Al-Marayati said during the public comment period. “I don’t know if you have been called a ‘terrorist’ or your children have been called a ‘terrorist’… What is worse is the vitriol I hear today by the people who drag my religion in the mud.”

The Villa Park Peace Coalition has vowed to attend every city council meeting until Pauly retracts her statement, publicly apologizes and tries to reconcile with the Villa Park constituents who were disrespected by her hate speech.

Supporters of the rally and the Coalition include Jewish Voices for Peace, Sts. Simon and Jude Catholic Church, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Fairview Community Church, Brea United Methodist Church, the Council on American-Islamic Relations - Los Angeles, the Islamic Shura Council of Southern California and the Sikh Coalition.


UPDATE 5/24/2012

The wheels of justice turn slowly, but they do turn.  The Republican Party of Orange County has voted to remove Deborah Pauly as Vice-Chair.  This came after a series of incidents.  TPM Muckraker reports that

...  Pauly has been at the center of other recent uproars, too. Last year, the Register reported, she defended a fellow Orange County Republican who sent out an email depicting President Obama as a chimpanzee.

In 2010, according to the L.A. Times, she also drew criticism after posting a message on her Facebook page that compared applauding the president’s health care reform plan to “applauding a mugging or a rape.”


SEE ALSO:

A Defense of free speech by American and Canadian Muslims   http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/a_defense_of_free_speech_by_american_and_canadian_muslims/

Anti-Muslim videos spark anger; pro-Muslim rally planned for March 6 (#mar6), Melissa Bell http://voices.washingtonpost.com/blog-post/2011/03/anti-muslim_rallies_spark_ange.html 

At Orange County Hate Rally, GOP Councilwoman Says She Wants Marines To Send Muslim Families To ‘Paradise’  http://thinkprogress.org/2011/03/03/hate-rally-muslim-charity/

The American Muslim Community and Rep. Peter King’s “Islamic” Radicalization Hearings, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the_american_muslim_community_and_rep._peter_kings_islamic_radicalizat/

American Muslims Must Accept That They Are Not Equivalent to Real Americans, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/american_muslims_must_accept_that_they_are_not_equivalent_to_real_americans/

American Muslims must defend the Constitution of the United States, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/american_muslims_must_defend_the_constitution_of_the_united_states/

The Anti-Muslim Congressional Mafia, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/muslim_mafia/

Anti-Muslim hate rally summons the ghosts of Jim Crow, Max Blumenthal http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2011/03/07/max-blumenthal-anti-muslim-hate-rally-summons-the-ghosts-of-jim-crow/

Are Muslims “The Enemy Within?”, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/are_muslims_the_enemy_within1/

Are the Republican Presidential Wannabes the new Imperial Wizards?, Dr. Abdul Cader Asmal http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/are_the_republican_presidential_wannabes_the_new_imperial_wizards

At Allen West-Sponsored Event, Group Paints Thousands Of Muslims As Terrorists, Ryan J. Reilly http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/07/at_allen_west-sponsored_event_group_paints_thousands_of_muslims_as_terrorists.php

Bankrupt in Ideas, US Republican Contenders Demonize Islam for Political Gain http://www.aljazeerah.info/Opinion%20Editorials/2011/April/4%20o/Bankrupt%20in%20Ideas,%20US%20Republican%20Contenders%20Demonize%20Islam%20for%20Political%20Gain.htm

Paul Broun and Dr. Strangelove, Cynthia Tucker http://blogs.ajc.com/cynthia-tucker/2009/10/15/paul-broun-and-dr-strangelove/?cxntfid=blogs_cynthia_tucker

Herman Cain Needs to Read the Constitution of the U.S., Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/herman_cain

Can a Good Christian Be a Good American?, Sheila Musaji http://www.theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/can_a_good_christian_be_a_good_american/0016805

Claim that all terrorists are Muslims ignores history, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/claim_that_all_terrorists_are_muslims_ignores_history/ 

Congressmen Speak at Hateful Anti-Muslim Protest, Lee Brenner http://hypervocal.com/news/2011/disturbing-video-congressmen-speak-at-hateful-anti-muslim-protest/ 

God Squad Blasts Congressman Royce, Matt Coker http://blogs.ocweekly.com/navelgazing/a-clockwork-orange/god-squad-blasts-congressman-r/

The GOP has declared war on American Muslims, Sheila Musaji (with TAM article collection)  http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the-gop-has-declared-war-on-american-muslims

Growing anti-Muslim hatred in the U.S., Glenn Greenwald http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2011/03/03/hatemongering

Hatred against do-gooder American Muslims in Orange County, Juan Cole http://www.juancole.com/2011/03/hatred-against-do-gooder-american-muslims-in-orange-county.html

Hundreds Turn Out to Condemn, Support Villa Park Councilwoman http://voiceofoc.org/oc_north/article_2e020386-5519-11e0-8d04-001cc4c002e0.html

Is Pamela Geller Starting Judaism’s Westboro Baptist Church? (VIDEO), Joshua Stanton http://www.huffingtonpost.com/joshua-stanton/is-pamela-geller-starting_b_831186.html 

Islamic Sharia and Jewish Halakha Arbitration Courts, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islamic_sharia_and_jewish_halakha_arbitration_courts/

Islamophobia no longer questioned - even by our elected representatives, Sheila Musaji (with many quotes) http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islamophobia_no_longer_even_questioned/

Menil, Gregory School exhibit finds eerie 2011 parallel in California anti-Muslim protests http://www.29-95.com/art/story/menil-gregory-school-exhibit-finds-eerie-2011-parallel-california-anti-muslim-protests

Mom: Anti-Muslim mob “terrified” my kids, Justin Elliott http://www.salon.com/news/islam/?story=/politics/war_room/2011/03/04/orange_county_protest_reaction

Muslims in the Military http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/muslims_in_the_military/

O.C. demonstrators protest Muslim activists, Lisa Armony http://www.jewishjournal.com/community/article/oc_demonstrators_protest_muslim_activists_20110222/#When:00:36:18Z

Politicians and protestors condemn U.S. Muslims, Cahir O’Doherty http://www.irishcentral.com/story/ent/manhattan_diary/politicians-and-protestors-condemn-us-muslims-117395123.html 

Reps. Royce And Miller Legitimize Religious Bigotry http://politicalcorrection.org/blog/201103030015 

Royce Stands With Religious Bigots while Sanchez Stands Up For Religious Freedom and Civil, Chris Prevatt http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2011/02/17/royce-stands-with-religious-bigots-while-sanchez-stands-up-for-religious-freedom-and-civil/

Shocking anti-Muslim Hate Video in Orange County, California http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2011/03/03/shocking-anti-muslim-hate-video-in-orange-county-california/

Tea Party Organizes Islamophobic Hate Rally, Hussein Rashid http://www.religiondispatches.org/dispatches/husseinrashid/4333/tea_party_organizes_islamophobic_hate_rally/

This is what anti-Muslim hate looks like, Justin Eliott http://www.salon.com/news/politics/war_room/2011/03/03/orange_county_muslim_protest/

The ugly face of Islamophobia in Orange County, California, Richard Adams http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/richard-adams-blog/2011/mar/03/orange-county-protest-islam

Villa Park councilwoman targeted over anti-Muslim rhetoric (with video) http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=news/local/orange_county&id=8028752

What everyone “knows” about Islam and Muslims, Sheila Musaji (with links to refutations of many common stereotypes and false claims)  http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/what_everyone_knows/

Why Do They Hate Us?, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/why_do_they_hate_us_-_tam_article_collection1/


Google