Archive for 2011

SPLC: Number of Anti-Muslim Groups ‘Tripled’ in 2011

Posted in Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , on March 9, 2012 by loonwatch

My guess is there are even more anti-Muslim hate groups then reported:

SPLC reports growth of US hate groups

The Southern Poverty Law Center has published the Spring 2012 issue of its Intelligence Report, on “The Year in Hate and Extremism 2011″, which identifies a continued growth in the number of hate groups operating in the United States.

In “The ‘Patriot’ Movement Explodes” Mark Potok states: “The radical right grew explosively in 2011, the third such dramatic expansion in as many years.” Potok writes:

The number of anti-Muslim groups tripled in 2011, jumping from 10 groups in 2010 to 30 last year. That rapid growth in Islamophobia, marked by the vilification of Muslims by opportunistic politicians and anti-Muslim activists, began in August 2010, when controversy over a planned Islamic cultural center in lower Manhattan reached a fever pitch. Things got worse later in the year, when Oklahoma residents voted to amend the state constitution to forbid the use of Islamic Shariah law in state courts – a completely unnecessary change, given that the U.S. Constitution rules that out. The overheated atmosphere generated by these events also helped spur a 50% jump in the FBI’s count of anti-Muslim hate crimes in 2010. Then, in March 2011, U.S. Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) held hearings on the radicalization of U.S. Muslims that seemed meant to demonize them. At the same time, there was a swelling of truly vicious propaganda like this remarkable Jan. 14, 2011, comment from columnist Debbie Schlussel: “They are animals, yes, but a lower form than the dog, as they won’t learn to change their behavior for a carrot or a reward.”

In connection with anti-gay groups Potok points out:

In another development, most of the religious right groups that started out opposing abortion but moved on to attacking LGBT people have recently begun to adopt anti-Muslim propaganda en masse. The gay-bashing Traditional Values Coalition, for instance, last year redesigned its website to emphasize a new section entitled “Islam vs. the Constitution,” published a report on Shariah law, and joined anti-Shariah conferences.

Anti-Muslim Attacks Rose 34% in France in 2011

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon Violence with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 1, 2012 by loonwatch
AntiMuslim_Attacks_Increased_by_34%_France
Anti-Muslim Attacks Increased by 34% in France in 2011

These numbers are very conservative, however they are still quite alarming. If anyone has a better translation please forward it to us, this is my quick translation via. Google:

Anti-Muslim Attacks Rose 34% in France in 2011

(Le Monde)

On Wednesday, the 1st of February, the National Observatory against Islamophobia said that Anti-Muslim acts and threats listed on French soil in 2011 increased 34% over the previous year.

According to Abdallah Zekri, president of the observatory attached to the French Muslim Council, these figures are from Statistics compiled by the Sub-Directorate of General Information (SDIG), reported the AFP.

“The actions and threats that have been the subject of formal complaints to the police and gendarmerie have increased from 116 in 2010 to 155 in 2011, an increase of 33.9%,” says Zekri. Only for actions, SDIG statistics for 2011, concerning in particular the violence and assault, fire and damage, the number increased from 22 to 38 a year to the next.

“I wish that President Sarkozy, to whom I sent a letter in December, make a statement. It denounces these unspeakable acts. In short, he seeks to allay the concerns of Muslims who are citizens just as Christians or Jews, “said Mr. Zekri.

The original French:

Les actes anti-musulmans ont augmenté de 34 % en 2011

(Le Monde)

Les actes et menaces anti-musulmans répertoriés sur le territoire français en 2011 ont augmenté de 34 % par rapport à l’année précédente, a annoncé mercredi 1er février l’Observatoire national contre l’islamophobie.

Selon Abdallah Zekri, président de cet observatoire rattaché au Conseil français du culte musulman, ces chiffres proviennent de statistiques de la sous-direction de l’information générale (SDIG), communiquées à l’AFP.

“Les actions et les menaces qui ont fait l’objet de plaintes déposées officiellement auprès des services de police et de gendarmerie sont passées de 116 en 2010 à 155 en 2011, soit une augmentation de 33,9 %”, précise M. Zekri. Pour les seules actions, les statistiques de la SDIG pour 2011, qui concernent notamment les violences et voies de faits, les incendies et les dégradations, leur nombre passe de 22 à 38 d’une année sur l’autre.

“J’aurais aimé que le président Sarkozy, à qui j’ai adressé une lettre en décembre, fasse une déclaration. Qu’il dénonce ces actes inqualifiables. Bref, qu’il cherche à apaiser les inquiétudes des musulmans, qui sont des citoyens au même titre que les chrétiens ou les juifs”, a déclaré M. Zekri.

Anti-Loons of 2011: Profiles in Courage

Posted in Anti-Loons, Feature with tags , , , , , on December 29, 2011 by loonwatch
From Molly Norris, one of the Anti-Loons of 2010

(A List of the anti-Loons of 2010.)

That time where we recount and reflect upon the events and happenings of the past year is upon us. A review of 2011 is due in short order, but before we post that piece we will consider the anti-Loons of the year. This time around it would only be fair to allow loonwatchers to vote for the Anti-Loon of the Year. As we can’t create a poll, we present those we found deserving of such a consideration.

G. Greenwald

It goes without saying that we feature and cite many of Glenn Greenwald’s articles. His research is almost always exhaustive and thorough. The facts he uncovers are intertwined with phenomenal analysis that very often exposes the hypocrisy of the US government, attacks on the rule of law, double standards in media and much more.

A perennial Anti-Loon, Stephen Colbert has joined his creative prowess with biting political satire that is only challenged by his arch-nemesis Jon Stewart. Colbert lent his enormous talents quite a few times in brutally exposing the stupidity of Islamophobia.

 

 

We freakin’ love Jon Stewart! We have his image on the side of our website linking to his page on Comedy Central. He is an inspiration, and what he has done to combat Islamophobia in this country is, in my opinion, equal to the efforts of a Glenn Greenwald.

Wajahat Ali

Wajahat Ali has made an extraordinary contribution towards, on the one hand, “humanizing Muslims” and “Islam” through the arts, and on the other hand factually taking apart the funding of the Islamophobia apparatus in this country. His contribution to the Center for American Progress report entitled Fear, Inc. was one of the biggest stories of the year. For this, co-authors Matt Duss and Eli Clifton deserve an honorable mention as well.

Sheila Musaji has for a long time been taking anti-Muslim bigotry and Islamophobia to task through her website The American Muslim. She has been a premiere defender of justice, equality and freedom, and for her strong stance she draws the ire and scorn of the hatemongers. Keep up the indispensable and valuable work Sheila!

 

Sherrif Lee Baca has been a consistent defender of religious freedom and pluralism. He is someone who actually interacts with Muslims and has taken the effort to understand Islam. In his amazing testimony in front of Congress during the Peter King McCarthyesque hearings he displayed his intricate knowledge of not only Islam but the smears leveled at Muslim leaders and organizations. He provided curt, substantial, factual and logical replies to leading anti-Muslim questions that too often are not rebutted in the mainstream.

Ahmed Rehab is a consistent and seemingly tireless voice for rationality and harmony in our society today. He is one of a handful of Muslims who manages to receive airtime to annihilate any and all Islamophobes he encounters in debate; various Fox News interviews attest to that reality. His participation in the Arab Spring highlights the diversity of his activism. Recently, his article on the “Radical Right” threat to America garnered much attention and is a necessary corrective to the exaggerated focus on conspiracies of “Islamization” and “terrorism.” A point we have been making on this site for quite some time now.

Reza Aslan is one of our favorite scholars. When he is not demolishing Islamophobes in debate he is traveling the country speaking at various venues about Islam, the Muslim world and its interactions with the West. He is also a powerful voice for peace and his exclusive interview with Loonwatch was one of the highlights of the year for us:

 

 

Sarah Posner is one of the foremost writers on religion in America today. Her articles are carried widely across the country in many different venues. Her skill at in-depth analysis of religious trends makes her an important voice when she turns her attention to anti-Muslim and Islamophobic bigotry.

Haroon Mughal is a great writer, with tremendous insight and piercing analysis. He went into the lion’s den when he attended a radical Christian gathering in Detroit that was aimed at having Jesus “invade” the dreams of Muslims and turn them into Christians.

Richard Silverstein is an ally and a friend of Loonwatch. His work detailing the hate amongst extremist Zionists in Israel and their American counterparts has been significant and vital. He is a promoter of peace and is continuing the Jihad of Tikun Olam, “repairing the world.”

 

Cenk Uygur is another perennial favorite of ours on Loonwatch. His show, the Young Turks provides us with much material in exposing the fallacies of right-wing loons:

 

Aasif Mandvi is a special reporter for the Daily Show and one of the shining lights of Muslim comedy in the America today.

 

 

Russel Simmons has been out in front fighting bigotry against all people especially Muslims. He was a prominent voice supporting Park51 and recently bought all the Ad space for the All American Muslim reality show.

The Peter King hearings while bringing forth the ugly populism that lies at the heart of much of our politics also highlighted some courageous and forthright politicians who were willing to take a stand against demagoguery and hatred.

Rep. Keith Ellison’s testimony at the Peter King hearings was heart wrenching. Ellison did a good job over the past year of humanizing Muslims and being a progressive voice for justice and equality in the nation.

A friend and ally of the site, Lesley Hazleton is an erudite scholar with a tremendous sense of humor.

This by far has not been an exhaustive list. Please add any names you think are important to see here and we will update the piece. Below are some more individuals deserving of anti-Loon consideration (*not in any particular order):

*Update: Bob Pitt of Islamophobia-Watch, Muhammed Malik, Amy Goodman of Democracy Now, Chris Christie, Charles Johnson of LGF, Faiz Shakir, Mikey Weinstein, William Coley, Tariq Jahan.

Max Blumenthal

Spencer Ackerman

Charles Kurzman

Kenny Irwin Jr.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Andrea Elliot

Justin Elliot

Alex Pareene

Zubiru Jalloh

Rais Bhuiyan

Kari Ansari

Mevludin Oric:

Richard Bartholomew:

John Esposito:

Alan Colmes:

Two Young Chechens:

Prof Risa A. Brooks:

Happy Eid! Have a Blessed Time

Posted in Anti-Loons with tags , , , , , on September 1, 2011 by loonwatch

From all the writers on LoonWatch: Happy Eid!

Cairo, waxing moon