- Main Justice - http://www.mainjustice.com -
AG Reaches Out to Muslim-Americans in Speech
Posted By Steve Bagley On October 19, 2009 @ 4:04 pm In News | Comments Disabled
Attorney General Eric Holder spoke at an Anti-Defamation League  dinner in Las Vegas Sunday evening to denounce hate crimes, including against Jews and Muslim-Americans, the International Jerusalem Post reported today .
While Holder spoke of his support for the proposed Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act  – which would expand federal law to protect people discriminated against on the basis of their sexual orientation, gender or disability — he also addressed law enforcement’s relationship with the Muslim community.
He said, according to his prepared remarks:
“I have heard from Muslim Americans who feel uneasy about their relationship with our government, who feel isolated and discriminated against by law enforcement. They report feeling denied the full rights of citizenship and also, just as importantly, the full responsibilities of citizenship.
I realize that we can become emotionally overwhelmed by acts of terror committed in the name of Islam. We can, perhaps, fail to see that virtually all Muslim Americans are, just like us, trying to do what all Americans wish to do – lead fulfilling, honorable lives, raise their children, love their families, support their communities, and serve their country.”
Holder has spoken often of the continued threat inside the United States from terrorist plots, but he avoids linking that threat directly to Islam. The recent arrest of Najibullah Zazi on suspicion the Afghanistan-born airport shuttle driver was planning to bomb targets in New York City was one of the most serious threats since 9/11, Holder said  in a recent discussion with reporters.
At the same time, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has been under attack by a prominent Muslim advocacy group since the FBI last year cut off contact  with its national leadership after evidence emerged in a Texas trial of their ties to Hamas. Members of the Council on American Islamic Relations  have accused the FBI of planting spies in mosques and taking other measures to undermine the civil liberties of Muslim-Americans.
Over the summer, Holder made an unannounced visit  to a Los Angeles Mosque, a gesture of community outreach. “The point was to engage the Muslim community here in Los Angeles and make sure they understand this administration’s commitment to work with that community,” Justice Department spokesman Matthew Miller said at the time.
Article printed from Main Justice: http://www.mainjustice.com
URL to article: http://www.mainjustice.com/2009/10/19/holder-reaches-out-to-muslim-americans-in-speech/
Copyright © 2009-2012 WDC Media LLC. All rights reserved.