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CAIR-CHICAGO NEWSLETTER




Loyola Students Rally Against Hate


Ann Coulter Gets $22,500 from Loyola's Students Activity Fund for Campus Speech

Diverse Coalition of Loyola Student Organizations Holds Same Day Event to Counter Hatemongering

On Thursday, March 23, 2006, the Loyola Student Coalition Against Bigotry (LSCAB) is holding a peaceful rally and rebuttal against controversial speaker Ann Coulter, who is scheduled to speak about “Liberal Lies about the Conservative Right” on the Loyola Lakeshore campus at 7pm, that same day. The LSCAB event, entitled “United Together Against Hate,” will be held directly outside her speech venue at Loyola’s Halas Field beginning at 5pm.

What: United Together Against Hate – The Ann Coulter Counter Event
When: Thursday, March 23, 2006, 5PM – 7PM (Contact us for a full itinerary of speakers/time)
Where: Loyola Lakeshore Campus - Loyola’s Halas Field
Who: Loyola Student Coalition against Bigotry (LSCAB) & A Host of Chicago Activists

Ann Coulter, who was invited by the Loyola College Republicans, is a highly controversial speaker, whose rhetoric directly marginalizes people of color, women, immigrants, homosexuals, Muslims, Middle-Easterners, and the poor. Her message does not reflect any of the ideals of the university’s Jesuit Catholic tradition, which values diversity, learning, justice, community, and faith. Yet, she is being provided with $22,500 from the Loyola’s Students’ Activity Fund, despite a petition signed by more than 1000 Loyola students and countless efforts to try to rescind Coulter’s invitation.

The LSCAB, a coalition of many diverse groups on campus, including the Loyola Anti-War Network, the Muslim Students’ Association, Hillel, Amnesty International, Loyola Students Against Sweatshops, the Feminist Forum, the South Asian Students’ Alliance, the Turkish International Club, and the Loyola Vegan Society, is uniting with the support of external groups, such as Illinois Peace Action, Voices for Creative Non-Violence, Military Families Speak Out, the World Can’t Wait campaign, the West Suburban Faith-Based Peace Coalition, Fox Valley Citizens for Peace, and the SPACE Collective, to take a stand against Coulter’s message of hate and bigotry.

Together, they wish to provide an alternative for students and an outlet for more tolerant opinions. The LSCAB also wishes to uphold the standards and values that they believe are the foundation of the university. As Americans, we champion freedom of speech, however, that freedom should not be exploited on a campus by outside forces whose agenda marginalizes and demonizes many of our very own students on the premises of their second home.

The counter event will include speakers who will represent a variety of different perspectives on issues of race, gender, religion, political affiliation, sexual orientation, etc. These include Ahmed Rehab from the Chicago Office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, Bishop Wilkowski from the Church of the Holy Family, Ginger Williams from Military Families Speak Out, and many more. Food will also be served, and entertainment provided.

CONTACT: Ellen Rebman, Coordinator, Loyola Student Coalition Against Bigotry (LSCAB) erebman@luc.edu Phone: 630-267-0574; or Farah Khan 847-722-2355 fkhan6@luc.edu


See Event Photos

Click to see Counter-Coulter Rally Ads

Click to View Statement Released to the Press


Copyright (C) 2006 CAIR-Chicago






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RECENT CASES:

Civil Rights Update – 3/27/06

The Civil Rights Department at CAIR-Chicago currently has 370 cases documented in which 145 cases are active and are being pursued by department personnel. Below are the cases that were reported to CAIR-Chicago within the last two weeks.

Criminal:

  • A Hindu family in Indiana had their Lincoln Navigator blown up in their driveway earlier this year. Police did not investigate the explosion. More recently, the family came home to find “sand nigger” spray painted on their garage door. The FBI is now investigating both incidents as a hate crime. CAIR-Chicago is attempting to contact the family to assist in any way possible.
  • A Muslim woman in southern Indiana reported continual harassment by some members of her small town. The group would call the woman a “sand nigger” and “towel head” and would threaten to “chop her up and feed her to the pigs.” The group had also threatened to kill the woman by burning her house down. In December of 2005, the woman’s house was completely destroyed in a fire, from which the woman and her husband barely escaped. The police determined that the fire had been caused by gasoline ignited near the front door, but have not completed their investigation. The woman is also facing allegations and defamatory statements made by individuals from this group. CAIR-Chicago has assisted in locating an attorney to aid the woman in facing the allegations and is pursuing charges against the group members for their hate crimes.


Government:
  • A Muslim woman reported a delay in obtaining visas for member of her family. CAIR-Chicago has referred the woman to the Midwest Immigrant and Human Rights Center (MIHRC).
  • A Muslim man reported harassment by local police officers. The man reported that the police officers in his area target minority groups. CAIR-Chicago is investigating the incident to determine the man’s options in addressing the concern.


Public Accommodation:
  • A Muslim couple, who are both identifiably Muslim because the man wears a Muslim skullcap (kufi) and the woman wears the Muslim face-veil (niqab), were refused entry at a local video-rental store. The couple was told that the woman would have to remove her niqab because she could potentially steal by hiding objects under her veil. CAIR-Chicago is responding to this incident by contacting the video-store’s management..


ONGOING PROGRESS:

View reports of ongoing progress for cases with the Civil Rights Department in the “Progress Report” section.

ACTION ALERTS:

Citizenship Delay Project - Religious Discrimination Delays Citizenship Process:

As a joint effort with the Arab American Action Network (AAAN), CAIR-Chicago is asking individuals who passed a citizenship examination and have been waiting for over 90 days, or have been waiting for a Green Card for permanent residence for over 90 days to contact us at either mennakhalil@gmail.com

Travel Free Project - Muslim Americans Detained and Questioned When Traveling Outside of the U.S.:

As part of a potential class action law suit, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and CAIR-Chicago is asking anyone who has been detained and questioned on return to the US at any border crossing (land or airport) to please contact travelfree@cairchicago.org.

Religious Discrimination at Standardized Testing Centers:

As part of a potential class action law suit, CAIR-Chicago is asking for anyone who has experienced any form of religious discrimination at a testing center to please contact us at civilrights@cairchicago.org. An example of a possible form of religious discrimination includes requiring or requesting the removal of a headscarf for searches, or discriminatory remarks made by employees about Muslims or Islam.

The facts of the above case are as follows:

A Muslim student was asked to remove her headscarf on two separate occasions at a testing center before she began a standardized test required for graduate school. The supervisor and employees of the testing center refused to show her a written copy of the policy requiring Muslim women wearing a headscarf to be searched. A witness at the testing center also observed the employees making discriminatory remarks about Muslims while the victim was taking the test.

Please let us know if you or someone you know have experienced a similar incident and would like to take action to prevent such forms of religious discrimination at standardized testing centers in the future.








 
See Pictures from the Loyola Student Coalition Against Bigotry (LSCAB) Rally - Click here



CAIR-Chicago is urging everyone to respond to an egregious case of police misconduct against Rehana Khan, a Muslim girl who had her headscarf (hijab) ripped off after she and several others were arrested for civil disobedience while protesting at a rally for immigrant rights. As she was led to a squad car, Ms. Khan informed an officer that the way in which she was being handled was causing extreme pain - actions from which she obtained bruises and scars - and requested that the officer ease her grip. The officer responded by stating: “No, that’s what you get,” and then remarked, “Take that off” and violently pulled off her hijab.

At the police station, Ms. Khan was made to take off her hijab again and was searched by a female and male officer without her hijab on. After the search, the female officer tried to give the hijab back to her but the male officer stopped her, stating something along the lines of there not being anybody at the station to look at her and indicated that the practice of wearing the hijab was a “fashion statement.” Ms. Khan was then kept in lock up without being permitted to wear her hijab.

CAIR-Chicago will be meeting with representatives of the village of Arlington Heights to discuss the matter in upcoming days. Additionally, a trial to determine the fate of Ms. Khan, the other protesters, and the rights of protesters engaging in civil disobedience in the future is coming close.

ACTION REQUESTED:
Letters must be sent to the police chief of Arlington Heights as soon as possible demanding that the village drop the charges against the protesters and address the misconduct of the police officers who violated Ms. Khan’s civil rights. Below is a letter you can send to the police chief. You can also print out the attachment to this email and send out the letter. Action must be taken immediately. For questions, email civilrights@cairchicago.org.

Download and send this letter to the Chief of Police
(MS Word Document)




CAIR-Chicago Welcomes New Activists to the Team


Emaan Nafees is a 4th year undergraduate student at the University of Illinois at Chicago studying English Literature. She is a CAIR-Chicago intern with the Governmental Relations Department. She has an interest in Politics, History, Poetry, and pretty much anything else she finds remotely intriguing. She plans on teaching English abroad after graduation and thinks about grad school at times as well.


AbdelRahman Murphy is a freshman Secondary Education for the Social Sciences major at the College of Dupage. AbdelRahman is interning in the Communications Department at CAIR-Chicago. His desire to help the Muslim community keeps him honest in working hard for CAIR. Other than keeping active in the community, AbdelRahman likes to keep active in the pool. He swims for COD and plays Water Polo for the Northern Illinois Polo Club.




Become a Political Organizer & Earn Class Credit!

Want to help mobilize the Muslim community? Want to gain experience in the political field? Want class credit for doing what you like?The Governmental Relations Department is currently recruiting interns and volunteers for the historical political mobilization initiative, Project O. If you would like to help organize and mobilize the Muslim community or learn more about Project O, contact Governmental Relations Coordinator Sadiya Ahmed at gov.relations@cairchicago.org

Are you a Law Student Looking to Earn Credit While Externing at CAIR?
 
Extern will work closely with CAIR-Chicago's Executive Director and Civil Rights Coordinator on the following:

  • Assist in documenting incidents of religious discrimination by counseling and interviewing complainants regarding their incidents

  • Research laws and policies on employment, student conduct, and immigration procedures, as well as criminal offenses and other areas as seen fit

  • Legal writing: drafting arguments, memos and complaints

  • Participate in representing complainants in dispute resolution, EEOC mediation, filing complaints and law suits

  • Assist in maintaining the Civil Rights Online Center

  • Updating databases containing information about abuses reported to CAIR-Chicago The ideal candidate should be organized and demonstrate the ability to follow through the various on-going and newly assigned tasks. The ideal candidate will possess excellent written communication skills and a commitment to serving the community.


  • This is an unpaid externship. Open to all law students.
     
    Are you an Undergraduate or Graduate Student Looking to Earn College Credit While Interning at CAIR-Chicago?
     
    CAIR-Chicago is currently offering 11 internship opportunities. All internships are unpaid, but students may receive college credit. Applicants need to email a resume and cover letter to Dina Rehab, Outreach Coordinator, at: outreach@cairchicago.org.

    CAIR-Chicago is offering the following positions for internships:

  • Civil Rights Intern
  • Communications Intern
  • Community Service Intern
  • Governmental Relations Intern
  • Grant Research Intern
  • Marketing Intern
  • Operations Intern
  • Public Education Intern
  • Public Relations Intern
  • Church Project Intern
  • Faith Core Online Magazine Intern


  • Please Contact the Outreach Coordinator for more information on the tasks and duties of specific internships. Call Dina Rehab at 312-212-1520 or at outreach@cairchicago.org
     










    Executive Director
    Yaser Tabbara

    Director of Communications
    Ahmed Rehab

    Civil Rights Coordinator
    Christina Abraham

    Governmental Relations Coordinator
    Sadiya Ahmed

    Outreach Coordinator
    Dina Rehab

    Operations Coordinator
    Sabah Ahmed

    Legal Advisor
    Maria Mozaffar

    Board of Directors
    Alim Elliott Khan
    Mazen Kudaimi, MD
    Alif Muhammad
    Ahmed Rehab
    Zaher Sahloul, MD
    Hina Sodha, Esq.
    Yaser Tabbara, Esq. - Secretary
    Safaa Zarzour, Esq. - President







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    For more information, please contact:

    CAIR-Chicago (A Chapter of The Council On American-Islamic Relations)
    28 E. Jackson Blvd, Suite 1410, Chicago IL 60604
    Phone: 312-212-1520, Fax: 312-212-1530
    Email: info@cairchicago.org, Website: www.cairchicago.org


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    The Chicago Activist is a publication of CAIR-Chicago
    17 N. State St., Suite 1500, Chicago IL 60602
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    Email: info@cairchicago.org, Website: www.cairchicago.org