On October 19, 2012 a delegation of international professionals met at CAIR-Chicago’s office to discuss the various issues that affect the Arab world.
Award winning Arab-American comedian, Dean Obeidallah, is coming to Chicago as part of his “Dean for Vice President” tour!
The film “follows a predominately Arab-American high school football team from a working-class Detroit suburb as they practice for their big cross-town rivalry game during the last ten days of Ramadan, revealing a community holding onto its Islamic faith while they struggle for acceptance in post 9/11 America.“ Watch a trailer for the movie here: http://fordsonthemovie.com/trailer.php
After more than a year of CAIR-Chicago raising the issue, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) finally agreed to recognize “Arab” as a race. Just last week, the EEOC headquarters in Washington, D.C. issued an apology letter to CAIR-Chicago Litigation Director Kevin Vodak for the improper classifications and assured him that steps have been taken to prevent further problems.
“For Amina Sharif, communication director of the Chicago branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the mainstream interest in Islam and Muslims began after September 11, but the negative feelings were always there.
“For Sharif much of the blame lies with the media and popular culture in the US, which she says is often “orientalist and slanted” in its depiction of Muslims and Islam.”
“Since the beginning of the peaceful demonstrations in Syria on March 15 this year, 1350 civilians have been killed. An estimated 15000 civilians have been detained, tortured or have disappeared and more than 12000 refugees have fled the country,” Christina Abraham, Civil Rights director at CAIR-Chicago, told the media in Johannesburg today.
Ahmed Rehab is the Executive Director of CAIR Chicago: the Council on American-Islamic Relations. He said the President sugar-coats the US demands on Israel. “Would you please do this, pretty please do that? That’s not the message the United States should have. We need to be a lot more courageous and bold and demanding of the right thing.”
“I think the President realizes that this is a historic opportunity for us to shift our foreign policy towards the Arab world, towards acknowledging the fact that it is the millions in the street calling for democracy and freedom, that are the real voice of that part of the world – and not the sporadic, peripheral, marginal, militant radical groups,” said Ahmed Rehab.
“The relevance of bin Laden should be overshadowed by the wave of pro-democracy movements in the Middle East,” said Yaser Tabbara, a Chicago attorney and member of the board of directors of the Council on American Islamic Relations. “Bin Laden was already marginalized, I’m someone who goes to the Middle East quite a bit and I haven’t heard his name in a very long time.”
With Pastor Terry Jones’ “Burn A Koran Day” fiasco and the ongoing Park51 debate taking center stage in the media, CAIR-Chicago is taking action. We are challenging misinformation and anti-Muslim rhetoric through interfaith and outreach efforts to educate the public. You may have also seen us in the news recently, adding balanced and informed perspectives to public discourse.