American Muslims Urged to Answer Critics
American Muslims, tired of being the targets of venom after 9/11, are starting to respond to their critics. Attendees at a weekend conference of the Islamic Society of North America are learning “how to apply pressure on politicians who smear the faith, the benefits of corporate boycotts and what constitutes legal grounds for defamation suits.” Those tactics have been used with some success by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).
CAIR, for example, sued a North Carolina congressman after he accused the organization of acting as a fundraising arm for Hezbollah, a militant Palestinian group. The council also organized a boycott against a radio station until it fired a disc jockey who called Islam a terrorist organization. CAIR also brought considerable pressure on a Colorado lawmaker who asserted that America should take out Islam's holy sites in the event of another terrorist attack.
The conference also discussed how American Muslims can “counter extremists who cite the religion to justify violence and terrorism.”
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