US author distributes “Muslim Welcome Zone” signs to fight Islamophobia
Dr Charlotte Laws, a Los Angeles resident, is fighting back against a Florida gun shop owner, who is selling “Muslim Free Zone” signs for front lawns in Florida.
She adds: “Our country was founded on religious freedom. The first clause of the First Amendment guarantees it. It is important to promote tolerance and acceptance for religious plurality.
“The anti-Muslim tone in the country is disturbing, and I hope others will join the cause.”
Hate crimes against American Muslims and their businesses have tripled since the Paris attacks. There have been a whopping 38 incidents in the past month.
Read more: Crimes against Muslim Americans rise sharply
“My neighbours include Catholics, Jews, Muslims, and Protestants,” states Laws. “Our street is becoming a “no go zone” for bigotry.
Laws says it is vital that Americans are clear about the distinction between terrorism and religious freedom.
“In my own little way, I want to stand up for two things. First, rationality, and secondly, not to be afraid. Targeting an entire religion, as this bigot in Florida has done, is entirely irrational as well as completely un-American.”
Andy Hallinan, the gun shop owner in Citrus County Florida, has been selling “Muslim Free Zone” signs. The signs look like stop signs and cost $24.99.
The Council on American-Islamic relations (CAIR) had filed a lawsuit against the shop owner, but a federal judge threw it out in November.
CAIR argued calling the store a Muslim free zone amounted to religious discrimination.
The judge ruled the store’s policy “did not present an imminent and concrete threat to Muslim people.”
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