March 14th, 2011 14:43 EST
Vandalism and Desecrated Quran: Will it Lead to Hate Crime Charges
The Greater Los Angeles Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA) today announced that it has called on the Anaheim Police Department to investigate a recent incident involving desecration of a Quran, Islam`s revealed text, as a hate crime.
Earlier this week, a Muslim woman returning to her car after shopping for groceries noticed a piece of paper taped to her car. She then saw that it was a partial page torn from a copy of the Quran with "F*ck it" written across it in red. The woman also noticed foam sprayed on the driver`s side of the car. The vandal or vandals had also "keyed" the car`s doors.
SEE PHOTO OF DESECRATED QURAN PAGE.
The woman, a 68-year-old Egyptian-American grandmother who wears an Islamic head scarf, told CAIR-LA she was "shocked and terrified."
"Our family is extremely disturbed by the incident," said the woman`s son. "It`s sad that some individuals can justify attacking other Americans` faith just because they do not know or understand that faith. We are all Americans, and we all share a love for our great country."
The incident comes following the shooting of two elderly Sacramento-area Sikh men. The men, 67-year-old Surinder Singh and 78-year-old Gurmej Atwal were shot over the weekend as they were on an afternoon walk. Singh died at the scene, while Atwal is in critical but stable condition. CAIR`s Sacramento Valley office offered a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrators.
SEE: CAIR-SV Offers Reward for Info on Gunman in Deadly Shooting
A video released by CAIR-LA last week showed a protest rally of a Muslim charity event held last month in Yorba Linda. In the video, protesters became increasingly venomous toward the families and children who came to attend the fundraising dinner and shouted abuse such as "Go home terrorist, "Muhammad is a pervert, Muhammad is a child molester," "Go home and beat your wife, she needs a good beating," at the event-goers.
One elected official present at the protest rally, Villa Park Councilwoman Deborah Pauly, spoke of sending the terrorists (while pointing to the community center where the event was held) to an early meeting in paradise. She also stated: "These who are assembling are enemies of America. They are your enemy. They are my enemy because they seek to destroy it."
SEE: Yorba Linda Protest Rally
"Given the clear rise in anti-Muslim sentiment across our nation, backed by some elected officials, we ask the Anaheim Police Department to bring appropriate hate crime charges against the perpetrators once they are apprehended," said Affad Shaikh, civil rights manager for CAIR-LA.
Shaikh also said that the Muslim community has received tremendous support from a vast majority of Americans who have expressed solidarity with their Muslim neighbors and spoken out against anti-Muslim bigotry.
CAIR is America`s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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