- For Immediate Release & Distribution -

PRESS RELEASE: Chicagoans to protest hate and Islamophobia tomorrow downtown

Flashmob against hate and Islamophobia

“White Balloon Protest” at the corner of Congress and Michigan in downtown Chicago

(CHICAGO, 8/16/2012) — On Friday, August 17th, the Chicago office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Chicago), the Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago, (CIOGC) and an interfaith and interethnic coalition of diverse community organizations will unite in protest against hate and Islamophobia by organizing a flashmob in downtown Chicago.

This action comes as a reaction to the recent disturbing spike of violent attacks against minority communities in Chicagoland and across the U.S., including a shooting at a mosque in Morton Grove, an acid bomb being thrown at an Islamic school in Lombard here in Illinois, as well as the burning down of a mosque in Joplin, MO, a paint ball attack on a mosque in Oklahoma, pigs legs being thrown at a mosque-site in southern California, the mass killing of Sikhs in Wisconsin, and just this morning, a fire bomb being thrown at a Muslim family’s home in Panama City.

WATCH: Morton Grove man charged with firing rifle at nearby mosque

SEE: Islamic school hit with acid-fileld bottle in Lombard

SEE: Suspicious fire leads to destruction of Joplin mosque

WATCH: Vandals shoot paintballs at OKC mosque

WATCH: CAIR-LA Asks DOJ to Launch Hate Crime Probe of Pig Legs at Mosque Site

SEE: Gunman, Six Others Dead at Wisconsin Sikh Temple

WATCH: Firebomb Thrown at Florida Muslim Family’s Home (CAIR)

“It should disturb every American that this is happening in America in 2012. Are we moving forward or regressing? No one should have to live in fear of being harassed, shot, bombed, injured, or killed simply for their faith, color, ethnicity, etc. Not here, not now, not after all this country has been through in terms of civil rights movements,” said Ahmed Rehab, Executive Director of CAIR-Chicago.

“Those who stoke the fires of hate must be held to public account, those who commit violent acts against faith-based or race-based targets must be given the sternest just punishment under the law.”

Chicago Muslim leaders have called out the GOP in particular given the shameful track record of Islamophobic rhetoric from public officials and supporting staff identifying themselves as Republicans in recent times.

WHAT: Flashmob against hate and Islamophobia
WHEN: Friday, August 17, 5:00 PM
WHERE: The southeast corner of Congress Street and Michigan Avenue in downtown Chicago
WHO: CAIR-Chicago, Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago, Interfaith and Interethnic coalition


-END-

CAIR-Chicago is a chapter of America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to defend civil rights, fight bigotry, and promote tolerance.

CONTACT:

CAIR-Chicago Executive Director Ahmed Rehab, arehab@cair.com; 312.212.1520 or 202.870.0166

CAIR-Chicago Communications Coordinator, Aymen Abdel Halim, ahalim@cair.com, 312.212.1520

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