LOS ANGELES – A leading American Muslim rights group called on Sunday, November 27, for stepped-up police protection of local mosques after an anti-Muslim, hate-filled letter supporting President-elect Donald Trump was sent to several mosques in California.
“This hate campaign targeting California houses of worship must be investigated as an act of religious intimidation, and our state’s leaders should speak out against the growing anti-Muslim bigotry that leads to such incidents,” Hussam Ayloush, Executive Director of the Greater Los Angeles Area chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA), said in a statement sent to AboutIslam.
Yesterday, CAIR’s San Francisco Bay Area chapter called for similar police protection of mosques after the same letter was sent to Evergreen Islamic Center in San Jose, Calif.
The hate letter was addressed to the “Children of Satan.”
The writer of the letter called Muslims a “vile and filthy people” and called on them to “pack your bags and get out of dodge.” It also said that President-elect Donald Trump is “going to cleanse America and it make it shine again. And, he’s going to start with you Muslims” and “This is a great time for patriotic Americans. Long live President Trump and God bless the USA.”
“We urge local law enforcement authorities to work with Muslim community leaders to ensure the safety of all houses of worship,” Zahra Billoo, the executive director of CAIR in San Francisco Bay Area said in the statement.
“Our state’s political and religious leaders need to speak out against the mainstreaming of Islamophobia that we are witnessing in California and nationwide.”
Police in San Jose have launched an investigation and are treating it as a “hate-motivated incident,” the Associated Press reported, citing San Jose Police Department spokesman Sgt. Enrique Garcia.
The Washington-based Muslim civil rights organization recently said that newly-released FBI hate crime statistics showing a 67 percent jump in anti-Muslim incidents in 2015 should push the nation’s leaders to repudiate growing Islamophobia.
There have been over 700 reports of hate crimes against Muslims, African-Americans, Asians, immigrants, women and gays across the U.S. since Election Day, according to Southern Poverty Law Center.
CAIR urged American Muslims and Islamic institutions to take extra security precautions, offering Muslim community leaders free copies of its booklet, “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety.”