Sufyan Sohel, Deputy Director of CAIR-Chicago, spoke at the Illinois State Bar Association’s Minority Bar Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Conference.
His presentation, titled “The Impact of Extremism & Hateful Rhetoric on our Civil Rights” offered an in-depth look at the rise of extremism and anti-Muslim/anti-immigrant rhetoric in America. He partnered with Rishi Jain, an attorney with Illinois Advocates, LLC, and the two attorneys discussed the effects of extremism on the perceived safety and security of the United States and the impact on Muslim and immigrant communities.
“With the current political climate and hateful rhetoric, supplemented with vicious attacks against innocent people both domestically and abroad, it is imperative that we speak about these issues. Hate, whether it be through words or action, is not okay. As Americans, we have a duty to stand up for each other and demand freedom and security for all people” said Sohel.
Sohel and Jain answered numerous questions on Islamophobia and its impact on South Asian and Middle Eastern/North African communities both socially and legally. They hope to continue the conversation in coordinating programming with several of the Asian Pacific Bar Associations. Sohel and Jain both also serve on the Board of the South Asian Bar Association of Chicago.
Last week’s Conference was the 4th Annual Minority Bar CLE Conference and was co-sponsored by the Hispanic Lawyers Association of Illinois, Asian American Bar Association, Korean American Bar Association, Chinese American Bar Association, Black Women Lawyers’ Association of America, The Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago, Filipino American Lawyers Association of Chicago, and the South Asian Bar Association.