|Campaign to address anti-Muslim sentiment|
New Website - "Shoulder-to-Shoulder: Standing with American Muslims; Upholding American Values"
August 2011: The Shoulder-to-Shoulder website launched this month with an events calendar from across the U.S. and resources for planning events in your congregation or community. Visit the Shoulder-to-Shoulder website.
Building a library of efforts across the U.S. to address anti-Muslim sentiment
Help NRCAT and “Shoulder-to-Shoulder” compile information on groups working to address anti-Muslim sentiment! Visit the Shoulder-to-Shoulder website and add what is happening in your community.
Action Alert - Write your Representative:
Rep. Peter King is holding hearings that single out American Muslims as a source of violence and extremism. Tell Members of Congress that you would like them to work with ALL Americans to end violence. Write to your Representative.
In December 2010, NRCAT joined other national denominational and faith groups in forming a new campaign to combat anti-Muslim bigotry. "Shoulder-to-Shoulder: Standing with American Muslims; Upholding American Values," is a coalition of 26 religious organizations. One critical factor that led to the U.S. government’s use of torture in the last decade was bigotry against Muslims after September 11, 2001. The fact that most of the people detained after September 11 were Muslim allowed our society to view them as “other” and to accept policy changes that allowed torture. Therefore, reducing anti-Muslim sentiment helps ensure that the dignity of each person is respected and that torture is prohibited without exception. NRCAT is an active member of Shoulder-to-Shoulder and we invite you to join our work.
September 8, 2011
NRCAT joined the Shoulder-to-Shoulder coalition in a press conference at New York Avenue Presbyterian Church in Washington, DC on September 8, 2011.
Watch the video of the press conference (courtesy of Shoulder-to-Shoulder):
Photos (courtesy of Shoulder-to-Shoulder):
March 29, 2011
The Senate Judiciary Sub-Committee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Human Rights held a hearing on "Protecting the Civil Rights of American Muslims." View Cardinal McCarrick's testimony. Read testimony submitted by Shoulder-to-Shoulder.
March 10, 2011
NRCAT joined other religious organizations in a press conference on the day of hearings by the House Committee on Homeland Security. The Shoulder-to-Shoulder campaign issued the statement: Religious Leaders Stand Shoulder-to-Shoulder Against Extremism of All Kinds in Support of American Values.
More: Press Release from NRCAT - NRCAT asks Rep. King to cancel hearings, issued March 8, 2011.
INTERFAITH SUMMIT - SEPTEMBER 7, 2010
NRCAT's Executive Director, Rev. Richard Killmer, participated in an interfaith summit on September 7, 2010. Organized by the Islamic Society of North America, one of NRCAT's founding members, participants issued a joint statement: "As religious leaders in this great country, we have come together in our nation’s capital to denounce categorically the derision, misinformation and outright bigotry being directed against America’s Muslim community. We bear a sacred responsibility to honor America’s varied faith traditions and to promote a culture of mutual respect and the assurance of religious freedom for all. In advance of the ninth anniversary of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, we announce a new era of interfaith cooperation." Read the entire statement. View the related press conference. The interfaith statement also generated numerous press articles including an article by The New York Times.
The National Religious Campaign Against Torture is deeply concerned about the growing anti-Muslim rhetoric and actions emerging in the United States in the past few months. While anti-Muslim sentiments, as misguided as they are, are not new to our country, they have become more common, seemingly more accepted, and, thus, more dangerous.
As a multi-faith organization with members from almost all the major faith groups in the United States, including major Muslim organizations, we at NRCAT are deeply concerned about this development both for the consequences to our country as a whole and to our Muslim friends and colleagues.
Our study of the use of torture has shown us that in order for a human being to engage in the immoral act of torturing another human being, the torturer has to see the tortured as "the other" -- not human, not worthy of inherent dignity and respect. Many of the comments circulating in the media against Muslims reflect this attitude -- that Muslims are not "us", they are "them". Once that attitude takes hold, religious values about the dignity of human beings and the importance of the human community dissipate and egregious acts, such as torture, can take place.
People of all religions, including Christians, Jews, Muslims, Baha’is, Sikhs, Hindus and Buddhists should be able to live and flourish in the United States. We are a country founded on religious freedom. It's what makes us great; it's what stokes our democracy; it's what helps keep us humane.
We at NRCAT call for the immediate end to all anti-Muslim rhetoric and acts. We also call on all people of good will to make every effort to bring people of faith together, to work for the common good, and to end torture once and for all.
Issued September 7, 2010. See press release.