CAIR-suggested policy changes in schools to accommodate Muslim students and posters celebrating Ramadan triggered “cease and desist” letters from the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund. It’s interesting that the group Freedom from Religion hasn’t pounced on this.
Previous reports (see below) have revealed that CAIR is trying to influence policy in public schools. Just a few months ago, a group of parents from a San Diego school sued and won in a lawsuit protesting Islam seeping into their school (see our previous report below).
Jihad Watch reports on the two most recent instances in New Jersey and Washington:
“N.J. Public School District to Students: “May Allah Continue to Shower You Love and Wisdom”, Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund, May 29, 2019:
The Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund (FCDF) sent a “cease and desist” letter moments ago to West New York School District’s superintendent, demanding that two district-sponsored Ramadan posters in Memorial High School be taken down.
One poster offers “Warm greetings from Memorial High school” and wishes students to “Have a blessed Ramadan.” The poster then beseeches that “MAY ALLAH CONTINUE TO SHOWER YOU LOVE AND WISDOM.”
“A public school district would never hang posters praying for Jesus Christ to shower students with love and wisdom. Apparently the Left’s notion of the so-called ‘separation of church and state’ only applies to Christians.”
Daniel Piedra, FCDF Executive Director
FCDF sent the letter to Superintendent Ms. Clara Brito Herrera and Scott Wolhrab, Memorial High’s principal after an anonymous teacher contacted FCDF on behalf of other teachers, all of whom are deeply concerned about the school district’s promotion of Islam……
Northshore School District in Bothell in Washington received a “cease and desist” letter from the FCDF, for promoting a CAIR-suggested policy change….
The policy directs teachers to create “safe spaces” for Muslims, plan with Muslim students to let them “quietly slip away” from class for prayer, “privately offer information” about nutrition during their Ramadan fast, give “a lesson” on Ramadan and privately ask Muslim students what accommodations they want.
Our previous reports:
Attempts to push an agenda into American schools by CAIR just got knocked down. Schools and parents of students across the nation need to pay attention to what’s being taught like these parents did (see our previous report below).
Angry parents sued the San Diego school district that tried to force CAIR propaganda on their kids. They won – with big help from the Middle East Forum:
“This is a tremendous victory because CAIR intended this plan to be a pilot program for a nationwide rollout.” – Daniel J. Piedra, executive director of the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund.
The Council on American-Islamic Relation’s (CAIR) ubiquitous presence in the San Diego Unified School District is over, thanks in part to the Middle East Forum:
A settlement in the federal lawsuit against the District, substantially funded by MEF, ends the District’s “anti-Islamophobia initiative,” which: (i) singled out Muslim students for special protections; and (ii) empowered Islamist CAIR to change the District’s curriculum to portray Islam more favorably.
The District enacted its initiative in 2017 at the behest of CAIR, which claimed that “Islamophobia” was sweeping through schools after the November 2016 elections. According to the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund – which brought the lawsuit on behalf of five San Diego families – CAIR activists were teaching schoolchildren “how to become allies to Muslim students” and conducting Islamic education workshops for teachers, among other inequities.
Under the terms of the court settlement:
- “Educators should treat each religion with equal respect, with the time and attention spent discussing each religion being proportionate to its impact on history.”
- “Educational material on religious subjects must be neutral and may not be presented in a manner that promotes one religion over another.”
- “Educators or other staff sponsoring guest speakers at District events must ask them not to use their position or influence on students to forward their own religious, political, economic or social views and shall take active steps to neutralize whatever bias has been presented.”
- “Guest speakers from religious organizations are not permitted to present to students on religious topics.”
We’ve reported on the infiltration of Islam in our public schools before and West Virginia is yet another example…Is your child’s school doing this? How can we let this happen when no other religion is allowed in public schools? If you see this happening, push back hard on it like Chris Wyrick of San Diego, California:
This is an outrage, but it is common nationwide: the Daily Caller News Foundation reports that Mountain Ridge Middle School in West Virginia is “instructing junior high students to write the Islamic profession of faith ostensibly to practice calligraphy.”
Students are made to write out the Shahada, which states: “There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.”
Pamela Geller writes: This is exactly what I warned about in my book, Stop the Islamization of America: A Practical Guide to the Resistance, in the chapter “The Mosqueing of the Public Schools.”
In order to convert to Islam, one says the shahada. Saying the shahada makes you a Muslim. The shahada is what is on the black flag of jihad. No non-Muslim student should be forced to write or say the shahada without the qualifier “Muslims believe that…” This is because it is a statement of faith.
If the school exercise is requiring students to write it, it should be clear from the wording of the exercise that this is Islamic faith, not the student’s faith. That distinction has been glossed over in many, many school textbook presentations. This is in West Virginia, not Baghdad. And it’s a problem not just in West Virginia – it’s a national problem.
Rich Penkoski, the father of a Mountain Ridge student, contacted me and explained the situation further. He sent me the packets the school gave out for the Jewish and the Christian lessons and commented:
Notice no bible verses, no reciting the 10 commandments or the Lord’s prayer. No practicing writing in Hebrew (not even the 10 commandments) as compared to the Islamic packet. There are no statements of faith, nothing asking the students to write it or practice in any of the Jewish or Christian rituals.
Read more: American Thinker
This is disturbing for all parents. CAIR has taken it upon themselves to claim that they need to fight “Islamophobia”. They see this as a problem but we see this as a shady way to have Islam taught in schools. We see what they’re doing but the bleeding heart liberals in San Diego are just passively accepting this propaganda:
“If allowed to stand, the SDUSD anti-bullying program – geared specifically to the CAIR-identified needs of Muslim students – could mark a dangerous departure from treasured constitutional principles and First Amendment protections. This case warrants serious attention, as it has grave implications for the direction of education and the supremacy of Islam in the nation.”
There’s a huge problem on so many levels with this. The most obvious one is that a Christian would be hammered for even remotely trying to push Christianity on the kids. So why should we accept teaching Islam to our kids? The answer is…WE SHOULDN’T!
WATCH FOR THIS IN YOUR SCHOOL!
American Thinker reported: With a decade-long history of yielding to Islamic demands and recent, more alarming submissions, San Diego city schools appear to be ground zero for Islamic indoctrination within American public schools. The current capitulation includes an Islam-centric curriculum with input and resources from a Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated organization, which raises First Amendment issues as well as serious concerns of favoritism toward Muslims students over students of other faiths.
The San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) history of accommodation to the demands of Muslim students began in 2007. That year, Carver Elementary School in East San Diego ignited controversy when 100 Somali Muslim students transferred from a closed charter school. To accommodate these new students, the school rescheduled its recess periods to allow a 15-minute break each afternoon for Muslim prayer. The school also added Arabic to its curriculum and removed pork and other non-halal food from the cafeteria. The outcry forced the school to rescind the break, but it simply shifted the lunch hour to accommodate Muslim prayer. SDUSD wasn’t as accommodating to a Christian student in 1993 and was successfully sued when it denied a high school student’s request for a lunchtime Bible study group.
This past week, SDUSD, in collaboration with the Council on American Islam Relations (CAIR), instituted an anti-bullying campaign aimed specifically at protecting Muslims students. In launching the initiative, SDUSD cited an unsubstantiated study by CAIR claiming that 55% of American Muslim students surveyed in California said they were bullied because of their religion. The new program will include adding lessons on Islam to the social studies curriculum that emphasize prominent Muslims in history, creating Muslim-only “safe spaces,” adding Muslim holidays to the school calendar, and providing support and resources for Muslim students during Ramadan.
According to Stan Anjan, SDUSD’s executive director of family and community engagement, the new program will focus on promoting a positive image of Islam. Special disciplinary measures will also be created for the so-called bullying of Muslims cited by CAIR. Instead of detention, the school plans a “restorative justice” program in which students dialogue with each other about perceived bullying words or actions. Educational materials on Islam and resource listings will be provided to parents and school personnel as well.
CAIR, “a radical fundamentalist front group for Hamas,” according to terrorism expert Steve Emerson, was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas terror-funding case brought by the Justice Department in 2007. CAIR operatives have repeatedly refused to denounce terrorist groups Hamas and Hezb’allah, and several CAIR executives have been successfully prosecuted and incarcerated for terrorist activities. CAIR was designated as a terrorist group by the UAE in 2014.
In 2015, Kevin Beiser and Michael McQuary, two members of the SDUSD Board of Education, issued a formal proclamation in support and recognition of CAIR San Diego, citing ten years of “constructive civic engagement” in San Diego and Imperial Counties. They praised the organization’s work to “promote not only religious and cultural tolerance and understanding but also justice and equality for all who live in the United States.”
CAIR director Hanif Mohebi was specifically complimented for his commitment to “promoting equitable educational opportunity for all students and preparing them to succeed in a culturally diverse society.” The trustees recognized a community partnership with CAIR in mediating school situations involving “discrimination and other behavioral issues [s]” and announced CAIR’s upcoming tenth-anniversary banquet, centered on the theme “Strengthening Our Voices, Advancing Together.”
CAIR, billing itself as a benign Muslim civil rights organization, has long been at the forefront in pressuring schools and businesses to accommodate the special needs of Muslims. In 2009, CAIR complained of favoritism when Christian students in Roseville, a Detroit suburb, were given permission slips to attend off-site Bible study classes. Yet CAIR pushed in 2012 for Dearborn public schools to accommodate Muslim prayer on school grounds and early Friday dismissals for Jumu’ah prayers. The organization has pressured schools to have a say on textbook selection and to feature its own lecturers for school assemblies. When a public school teacher in Concrete, Washington referenced the Taliban and Hamas while citing examples of the use of violence to bully people, CAIR cried “racism” and called for a federal investigation, saying the teacher had veered off topic to make anti-Muslim statements. The school district responded that the teacher’s comments were taken out of context.
Mohebi, the head of CAIR San Diego, has been pushing the “anti-Islamophobia” program. He recently tried to prevent the San Diego Police Department from attending a training session on Islamic terrorism featuring Ryan Mauro, national security analyst for the Clarion Project, a nonprofit dedicated to exposing the dangers of Islamic extremism. Mohebi said officers would be learning “conspiracy theories” from Mauro. Further, Mohebi importuned that no taxpayer dollars should pay for the training and that the SDPD should not confer continuing education credits for attendance. In a further attempt to control police training on Islam, Mohebi requested the ability to monitor police training to vouch for its accuracy and to provide clarifications throughout the session.
CAIR’s recent activity and its incursion into the San Diego schools’ curriculum has been criticized by Charles LiMandri, president and chief counsel of the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund (FCDF). LiMandri said the San Diego program represents a “wholesale realignment of school curricula and the students’ learning environment to the recommendations of a religious organization whose stated mission is to “enhance the understanding of Islam” and “empower American Muslims.”
The FCDF maintains that the First Amendment prohibits a government agency from attempting to effect a secular goal by the propagation of religious concepts. LiMandri points out the litigious pitfalls of a curriculum which could easily be construed as a governmental endorsement of a religion. He also cautions that CAIR’s interpretation of the term “bullying” could extend to the stifling of criticism of Islam, further impinging on First Amendment protections.
Citizens for Quality Education San Diego, a non-partisan group of citizens concerned about public education, voiced their opposition to the new Islamic-friendly curriculum and characterized it as an attempt to implement at local schools “anti-American sharia law,” incompatible with the U.S. Constitution. The group criticized the blatant singling out of the Muslim religion for special accommodations and demanded that the policy be rescinded. Despite widespread community outcry, the district seems to be moving ahead.