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tv   U.S. Council of Muslim Organizations News Conference  CSPAN  December 22, 2015 4:22am-5:06am EST

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>> on the next washington journal. a look at the impact of pending mergers between health care providers. also john whitehead discusses his book battlefield america which examines how the u.s. is on the edge of coming a police state. annie carter of the washington journal talks about the decision -- first time in 40 years. we will take your calls and look for your comments on facebook and twitter. washington journal's live every day at 7:00 eastern on c-span. >> this holiday weekend, book tv brings you three days of nonfiction books and authors. friday, back-to-back airings of afterwards. at 7:00 p.m. eastern, author books discusses his -- arthur
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brooks discusses his latest book. makee biggest mistake we [indiscernible]the one that fits people of the most is the one that should be easiest is to get happy. >> at 8:00 p.m., cornell west examines the life of martin luther king junior. >> martin understood that for any human being that wants to reach a level of integrity and decency, as a long-distance runner, you got to kill something in yourself, fear. you got to kill something in yourself, obsession with position and status and wealth. danforth,d by john the author of the relevance of religion. >> religion does point us beyond ourselves. people to be what is in it for me?
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it is not central. >> at 10 p.m., claire mccaskill talks about lady lack--ladylike, a memoir. >> i don't think we do anybody any favors by tying to -- by trying to just the politicians. >> saturday evening at 7:00, a panel discussion on wheel f mayory junior's run for in 1955. at 11 clock p.m., winston groom -- at 11:00 p.m., with the groom talks about his latest book. >> one of the first questions i choosed is why did you these three men from the second world war. superwer is they embodied characteristics of courage,
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character and patriotism. >> on sunday night at 8:00, author david patricia talks about 1932, the rise of hitler and fdr. and alyssa katz talks the influence machine. u.s. chamber of commerce. >> there is a reason i chose the chamber of commerce as a subject for my book. it is because this signal that's the single organization sums up how we got to this place. -- watch book tv on c-span2. >> coming up next, leaders from several muslim organizations discuss ways to improve anti-muslim attitudes in the u.s. chris christie meets with voters and new hampshire. at 7:00, we open our phone lines and take a look at phone -- look
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at headlines on washington journal. from several muslim organizations met to discuss -- this wasove hosted by the u.s. council of muslim organizations. it is 40 minutes. >> the u.s. council of was the organizations and -- in today, announcing major educational outreach and civil empowerment initiatives to reverse the islamophobia and america and enhance security through the promotion of freedom and justice. initiative icm oh includes a drive to register one million voters prior to the 2016 election.
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understanding of american muslims and a national open mosque a day designed to help increase interaction between american muslims and citizens of other faiths and backgrounds. initiative planned by our national was in coalition includes the formation of a new and strengthened alliance with interfaith partners, social justice groups and other minority communities that have faced similar challenges. the u.s. cmo will seek to increase emergency preparedness for islamic institutions and individuals. to address the rising number of incidents of hate crimes. they are unfortunate he happening nationwide. in virginia,
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organizations have discussed the present threat of violence that are preying on young people. and whohe internet twist the meaning of chiron -- of the koran. killedoticed that groups more muslims than they do other people. according to law enforcement experts, american muslims have been on the front line of identifying and reporting suspected violent extremists activities. groups also shared their experience regarding effective community driven solutions to the problems of violent extremism. aim theent would strategies ataim
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the current efforts. itself -- experts in the field shared some characters related to radicalization that includes isolation, the presentation of twisted religious ideology and the toxic anti-muslim political rhetoric. these strategies will seek to prevent the targeting of members of the american muslim community, by those extremist ideologies. it will help young people to rejoin the mainstream community. in each of the initiatives, coalition members will seek to protect the civil liberties of all americans.
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understand members the magnitude of the challenge facing our community. and now our nation. allow either isis or islamophobia to define who we are or to determine our destiny. we will define ourselves and we will charge our own destiny. he initiatives were discussed sunday on a long day of more than 100 national and regional muslim leaders in virginia, representing all areas of the country and all segments of the community. sunday summit was convened in
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response to the unprecedented rise of biased incidences in the wake of paris terror attacks and the san bernardino killings. however, we would like to take this opportunity to thank the overwhelming support we have received from our fellow citizens. even from political candidates, and from our neighbors and supporters. this is america and how we see america. this is how america will continue to be one nation for all. thank you. >> now i would like to introduce
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the national board chair on the council of coalitions. >> the council of american islamic organizations, a founding member, joined us in this summit. the summit brought together a diverse group to address the serious concerns of security facing our community and nation. in past year, the american muslim community found itself to be subject to increasing islamophobia and violence in our community. care issued a report outlining the increase in threats. we are particularly proud to join in the one america campaign. thank you.
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>> i would like to call on --, representing the muslim alliance of north america. >> i come this morning representing the muslim alliance in north america in full support of the work done by this tremendous summit. most of the members of the muslim alliance on or around america. we are clear we have to do a better job of reaching out to the mosques in america, teaching them how they can avoid seductive approaches found on the internet from groups like isis and others. we believe the issue is bigger
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than isis, it is a conspiracy to take advantage of our young people. we are redoubling our efforts as a community, building closer relationships with civil rights organizations, african-americans, hispanics, and others, along with our jewish brothers and sisters who have experienced the kind of racist rhetoric we see coming out of the political environment today. i want to close by saying i think the presence of the cmo and all the member organizations that joined us this weekend sends a message to isis that we are part of the solution of ridding them and their toxic
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message from around the world. thank you so much. >> i like to call on -- representing the islamic circle of america. >> hello. we are one of the largest grassroots organizations. we thought of what is happening in america, islamophobia is giving us a wonderful opportunity.
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this has been discussed by the party of muslim leaders. that will be -- we will be doing that together with communities and organizations. thank you. >> i will call on -- for presenting american muslims -- >> my name is kristin szremski. i'm sorry, i have to put on my reading glasses.
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i am with the american muslims for palestine advocacy organization. i'm the director of media and communications. it is a founding member of u.s. cmo. we fully endorse and support this statement, a major undertaking by the muslim community, the america first project. it is imperative we do a better job of outreach so our neighbors can get a sense of who we are. we have been doing outreach and condemning terrorism for years and years. the real problem is people haven't been listening. now representing the muslim community from coast to coast, our voices will be united and we will be heard.
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we especially support teaching our youth how to become in the civic engagement process as a path for american citizens. that is why we participated on muslim advocacy day, a project organized by care, and why a.m. p held the first ever palestine advocacy day, where we taught them how to be delegates and engage with their congressional representatives. we want our youth be safe, and exposing them to this type of activity is a path toward empowerment, and a sense of belonging to the diverse family known as american society. i want to thank all of the media who came out today. we do need your help in overcoming rampant state of islamophobia in this country.
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we appreciate the stories and coverage that have occurred and bring our stories to light and contextualize islamophobia out there. i am a journalist by trade. yesterday on the sunday programs, one of the announcers asked about a certain political candidate's stance on muslims, as if we are not sentient human eating is, individuals with our own agency. imagine replacing them with some other ethnic or minority group. we appreciate you coming out to hear about this initiative. i am personally very excited about this. thank you.
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>> i will call on the representive of the islamic society of north america. >> good morning. i serve as the vice president of the islamic society of north america. we are grateful to join regional organizations to launch these initiatives. these are difficult times for our nation. we have been through difficulties before. this initiative is not a muslim only effort. we benefit from the collaboration and the love of our and the partners, neighbors, and coworkers. this is also not an abstract exercise for us this is a real exercise for us, to make sure
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our children know they will make great contributions to the resolution of complex social problems addressing american society, ranging from injustice, poverty, inequality, and oppression. our children stand set by side with covering the uninsured, protecting the sanctity of life, and indeed we want to make it clear that anti-muslim bigotry, anti-muslim hostility are un-american. most muslims are concerned with the recent rise of measures. this concern does not negate the fact that for the most part muslim americans are thriving as contributing members of their neighborhoods, communities, schools, colleges, universities, and workplaces.
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bigots will never change this reality. we want to be clear to take time to meet with and share your visions for better cities, better counties, better states and our nation as a whole. talk to constituents and engage us as potential voters. aspire to political victory. if you choose to spew hatred, bigotry, vilification of muslim americans, you do so at your own political risk. we will ensure that your candidacy never succeeds. thank you. >> thank you. we will call on the american muslim alliance. >> thank you. good morning.
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i am here to associate myself with a statement in the initiative of the u.s. dmo. as a longtime civil rights and human rights advocacy in america, we have seen dark days before. we have seen it demagoguery in the political arena going back to as far as george wallace. this is nothing new. we step to the plate because we have had these kinds of cases. the civil rights community says it's better to light a candle than to curse the darkness. let's make this a muslim -- as a muslim parent, i am very proud
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of this movement to make sure that our young muslims are safe from such vicious organizations as isis. we stand shoulder to shoulder with them. as a parent, i am proud of the political initiative that is channeling our young children into constructive proactive engagement, pushing back against bigotry and islamophobia and moving forward to predicting as well as letting american know what we always know, that our youth are not terrorist suspects, but rather they are america's brightest prospects.
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>> let me call on the muslim public affairs council. >> thank you. i am the communications director for the public affairs counsel. i would like to thank this important conversation around this issue. i think it's important to know that each of our organizations have then working on these efforts, building interfaith relations and advocacy work and building programming within our help families. we are coming together to rely on each other's strengths. oftentimes, people talk about how the american muslim community is silent. part of that has to do that we
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make up a small minority of the larger population. this will amplify the efforts that we have been collectively working on. the building of the ships does not and with the american muslim community. we can only overcome the challenges we face if we extend and build partnerships outside the community. the challenge of islamophobia and anti-muslim bigotry, extremism, this can only be dealt with as we come together. i would like to use this opportunity for any organization concerned about the country, we can work together for a better america.
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last but not least, i hope i did not mispronounce your name. presenting the islamic leadership council of new york. good morning. >> i am here from new york. as you know, new york is the brother of the united states if new york is on board, everyone else's on board. we are here to support and endorse the u.s. cmo. we want to thank those organizations and public officials who came out in support of american values and defended the muslim community.
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in new york, the reason we have a good relationship with our government and with ourselves is we have a very good relationship with our public representatives. for that, i think the local government in new york for all of what they said and the policies they put in place. the other thing i want to say, as you asked the units the muslim community to say that extremist hijacked our religion, there are people out there who hijacked american values.
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we expect americans to come out and defend their own values. thank you. >> thank you all. we are open for questions and answers. please identify yourself and if you have a question to a specific guest. >> anyone can take this. following 9/11, have things ramped up? >> right after 9/11, we had a more coherent and united front.
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be -- the state -- despite our objections, president bush defended american values. he stood by the muslim community and he cautioned against russia's to judgment. he called on the public and the public officials not to target or skate note -- scapegoat for political reasons. this will enable the terrorists and their goals. today, we feel that there is a division in the nation. we anticipate muslim hate speech before the elections.
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for it to start a year before the elections, we feel the heat. we are seen firebombing of mosques. this is caused by irresponsible lyrical writer. scaring the public. confusing facts. the york times just released this. president obama quoted this fact. the new york times said that from a 2014, there have been three isis inspired attacks. in 2015, there have been 50,000 gun violence incidents causing the deaths of people. we have to put things in perspective. the isis attacks are getting disproportionate media and
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political attention. we have been unequivocal against isis and their attacks against americans. >> i would like to contextualize what's going on in our community as a backlash. after 9/11, the neighbors around my mosque in northern virginia came with candles, they are perimeter in we want to make it clear that these people who pray here are our neighbors and our friends. with the heated rhetoric that is going on now in the local sphere, our mosque, there was an attempted firebombing of my mosque by a young man that went to high school with other children who pray at that mosque.
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they caught him in the middle of the night, let them go. later on, they went on facebook and we turned it into law enforcement. the boy's mother called me and said that she wanted to apologize. my son is suffering with mental illness. in the climate of fear in hostility, he acted out. we had another case with someone shouting you need to accept jesus. we called law enforcement and they did an excellent job. this is a person who is caught up and they are psychologically unstable.
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we did not see this after 9/11. >> you mentioned the u.s. media coverage. >> i am not a doctor. thank you. unfortunately, and allow me to be critical. the media is our gateway to express our opinions and share what we think and what we do. i believe the media has been
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caught in this competition of ratings. if it bleeds, it leads. the muslim committee has been scapegoated and unfairly trade in the media. i think the media should not help. i think they should criticize it in a way they did criticize donald trump on his false accusation. we were mourning 9/11 like every american. he did that to divide the public and scare the public. he knows better. despite being corrected several times, he was given a lot of
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platforms to attack the muslim community. i believe the media contributed to this overwhelming for trail of the american muslim community as being silent and not doing anything. we have gun violence all over the place. you have more than 355 mass shootings in 2015. that means more than one per day in the united states. this is mainly at the hand of non-muslims. we did not see 24/7 coverage of the victims and the traders or the religious identity of the perpetrators. unfortunately, the focus of been mainly on a few acts in the muslim community that has been condemned roundly by american muslims. we have to work to things in perspective.
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no one will deny the existence of violence. the exaggeration gives an oversized for trail of the reality. i think the media plays a role in that. >> your comments on hillary clinton's statement. she said donald trump is the best recruiting tool for isis. >> i happen to agree with her. his statements are helping isis. he is playing into their hands. it's helping isis. isis could not get her help than political leaders to scare the
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public and help the public be scared by what isis is trying to dupe it isis leaders know they cannot destroy the united states. what they hope to do is to find americans and scare us. my message to all candidates, not just donald trump, stop being afraid. america is strong. go ahead. >> i'm sorry to interrupt. i did want to bring this home. this is what it means for american families. a young woman posted on facebook that she went to her secure old daughter's bedroom and the child had packed up her belongings and said i heard that donald trump wants to get muslims out of this country. will the army come in the middle of the night and make us leave. this is the impact of this islamophobia.
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it is filtering to our children. i just went to contextualize that. >> a final question if you don't mind. >> i am from the new york post. thank you for doing this. if you could explain about voter registration. how it will go. are you supporting a particular candidate? >> this initiative, muslim americans have been involved in the political process. they have been for quite some time. this becomes important because this is our country and we have the right to voice and make the choices in the selection.
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how we will do this, it's going to be a grass roots, a massive grassroots efforts by these member organizations and the muslim community throughout the country. we recognize that the muslim community alone cannot do change or make the difference in one election or the other. we understand that applies to other minorities. we will do alliances and coalitions. we will be reaching out. all politics are local. we understand how the system works. we are going to mobilize our community. we are going to do early voting. we will have busloads and shuttles to the polling stations. we will be doing every thing possible to make our community vibrant, active, energetic, understanding, this is their
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country in the have to make the choices. they have to be part of it. instead of being with this and taking the blame, we're not going to let anybody define who we are. we will do that ourselves. >> political engagement is an important factor. as a civil rights activist, i worked with john lewis and others. we've learned one thing. if you are demonized as a community, if you are denied your rights, if you become a victim of bigotry, the best response is to take your soul to
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the polls. we will use the ballot. we will use the ballot to fight a country. -- to fight bigotry. that's what we are going to do. let it be heard and clear to political candidates be it donald trump or who else, if you engage in islamophobia, if you engage in bigotry, you will pay a political price. we are going to register our people and we will use our ballots and we will take our souls to the polls and make sure you're out of there. >> just to clarify, none of our organizations are endorsing any candidate. there will be another
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organization that might be formed that would make that decision. most of us are 501(c)(3) organizations we are going to be engaged. in november, we remember. thank you very much. [laughter] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2015] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> tonight, on c-span. conceptd explains the of red and blue america. -- americanhave politics. to understand of the red blue politics, you have to look at the county level.
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that is where you see divisions. you can see it there. yankee-dom popping out. i have not messed with the colors. the red is republican in the blue is democrat. this is not a recent election. the 1916 showdown between woodrow wilson and charles hughes. party of thes a yankees for a century. parties come and go. the current parties have swapped over the past 40 years their constituencies and programs. trying to understand what parties use in -- using is an exercise in futility.
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the lasting differences that matter our regional and cultural and the parties end up re their garb and shifting wardrobe depending on those realities. >> you can hear more from colin woodard here on c-span. >> c-span takes you on the road to the white house. best access to the candidates, town hall meetings, speeches, rallies, and meet and greets. twitteryour comments on , facebook, and by phone. every campaign and that we cover is available on our webs like, -- our website www.c-span.org. christie has been campaigning

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