(ATLANTA, GA, 3/27/2019) — The Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Georgia) today commended the Georgia state legislature for unanimously adopting a resolution that condemned Islamophobic bigotry, and expressed condolences to victims of anti-Muslim hate crimes, including the 50 people killed in a terrorist attack on two mosques in New Zealand.
On March 26, 2019, the Georgia House of Representatives adopted the anti-Islamophobia resolution, which was co-sponsored by Rep. Bob Trammel, Rep. Derrick Jackson, Rep. David Dreyer, Rep. Sam Park, Rep. Rennitta Shannon, and Rep. Bee Nguyen.
“We thank our representatives in the State Capitol for clearly and unequivocally condemning Islamophobia, which has led to hate speech and hate crimes against Georgia Muslims, as well as against people across the country and around the world,” said Murtaza Khwaja, staff attorney and lobbyist with CAIR Georgia.
The two-page House resolution condemned “Islamophobic words, policies, and actions as hateful expressions of intolerance which contradict American values,” recognized “the harm suffered by Americans Muslims and others as a result of anti-Muslim bigotry, and “expressed condolences to the victims of Islamophobia both here and abroad, including the families of the 50 worshippers murdered in New Zealand.”
The House resolution noted that “Islamophobia against American Muslims has been manifested in various ways, including hate speech, hate crimes, illegal discrimination, political campaigns, religious profiling, and government policies.”
The resolution also encouraged law enforcement to take steps to protect all of Georgia’s houses of worship, including the over 70 mosques around the state, and called on public officials to confront anti-Muslim bigotry.
The House resolution passed one week after passage of a March 21st Senate resolution that acknowledged the positive contributions that American Muslims have made to society.
That Senate resolution–which was introduced by Senator Sheikh Rahman, the first Muslim elected to the Georgia state legislature, and Senator Zahra Karinshak–also welcomed participants in the state’s first-ever Muslim Advocacy Day. The March 21st event attracted 150 Georgia Muslim students, activists, and faith leaders to the State Capitol to practice lobbying their elected officials.
Last week, CAIR Georgia hosted a press conference, as well as a community town hall and self defense-seminar, in response to a terrorist attack on New Zealand mosques by a white supremacist whose manifesto expressed xenophobia and Islamophobia.
CAIR Georgia is part of is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. 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.
La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.