Sunday, June 08, 2008

CAIR Updates 'Open Sesame'

Daniel Pipes gives the following update on what’s going on at the Friendswood school incident we blogged about a few days back. (“CAIR Keeps Showing Up”):

May 30, 2008 update: Marcus Rives, a Friendswood city council member, wrote a letter to school board members in which he opined that the next time speakers are invited to share their culture, all faiths are represented. "Why not let Hasidic Jews come in or let Catholics speak or Christians?"

May 31, 2008 update: After a ruckus was raised, the Friendswood school superintendent, Trish Hanks, now reveals that the CAIR presentation came about as a result of an ultimatum CAIR presented to the school authorities following a purported hate crime.

One reaction came from the spokesman for the Houston Area Pastor Council, Pastor Dave Welch, called the presentation "unacceptable." His organization issued a statement calling for the resignation of the school's principal, Robin Lowe: "The failure of the principal of Friendswood Junior High to respect simple procedures requiring parental notification for such a potentially controversial subject, to not only approve but participate personally in a religious indoctrination session led by representatives of a group with well-known links to terrorist organizations and her cavalier response when confronted, raises serious questions about her fitness to serve in that role."

June 5, 2008 update: The Friendswood school district issued a statement that Principal Lowe, "has accepted another administrative position effective immediately." Another report indicates that this change came about at Lowe's own request. In either case, she is a very rare casualty of being pro-CAIR. Also of interest is the president of CAIR's Houston office, Tarek Hussein, revealing that he contacted Lowe after a father of a student at the school complained that his son had been physically attacked on the school grounds due to his being Muslim. To which, David Bradley, a member of the State Board of Education whose district includes Friendswood, replied: "There's a personal incident between two students and as a result of that we're going to yank everyone out of class? I got beat up in junior high. Did my dad go down and force all the kids to sit through sensitivity training in their P.E. class? No, that's absurd. The coach gave us licks and sent us home. That was the end of those incidents."

For the record, here’s exactly what Friendswood superintendent Trish Hanks’s statement to parents and community members says about what happened:

In response to an incident that occurred between students at Friendswood Junior High School and the perception and fear that it caused to some involved, Robin Lowe, principal, was contacted by the Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and told that they considered the incident a hate crime and had reported it to the FBI. Mrs. Lowe and Sherry Green, Deputy Superintendent, attended a meeting with representatives of CAIR. At the meeting, CAIR requested an opportunity to present factual and basic information about Muslims to students at Friendswood Junior High School since the school is predominantly Anglo Christian. Anticipating this request, I instructed Mrs. Green that the district would welcome the presentation to administrators and staff only, but not for a student presentation. This has been the way the District has handled other requests by groups interested in raising our awareness of the culture of our students who are minorities in Friendswood. After administrators have listened to others' concerns, we discuss the issues we are having in FISD schools and the appropriate way to address them for our students. After the meeting, I was told that a presentation would be scheduled with the administrative team. It is obvious now, that a misunderstanding occurred between two very competent and dedicated administrators.

“Misunderstanding?” But Ms. Hanks just said Principal Lowe was at the meeting with CAIR where Ms. Hanks made clear she would allow a CAIR presentation to administrators and staff ONLY.

And yet regardless, at CAIR’s persistent urging, and just as CAIR had been requesting consistently from the beginning, Lowe sets up the assembly for students. Ms. Hanks explains this away as Principal Lowe acting hastily “in the midst of activities during the final two weeks of school.” I’m sure that’s why she also didn’t e-mail her decision to Ms. Hanks or the deputy superintendent at such a late moment that they wouldn't learn about it until it was too late to stop it.

It also should be pointed out that, as to the alleged “hate-crime” excuse that CAIR used to intimidate the school district, the district’s position is that “it does not consider the incident to have been a hate crime.” (“Student ‘incident’ prompted Islam program”).

To which I say, hate crime shmate crime--as if that even matters! Or as if it matters that CAIR's alleged report to the FBI of a “hate crime” at Friendswood will almost certainly never be heard from again. This was never about CAIR protecting some Muslim kid from being bullied. It's all about CAIR getting a foot in the door to do some serious da'wa. And this shows how easy CAIR can get in and give an Islamic altar call to an entire junior high just by invoking those two magic words.

And that's why we can now go ahead and add to our list of traditional incantations, like “abracadabra” and “open sesame,” the magical formula, “hate crime.” Just as easy as the treasure cave opened up for Ali Baba when he commanded “open sesame,” behold how schools, universities, police departments, politicians, and news outlets grant magic access any time, anywhere, every time CAIR shows up and says “hate crime” out loud.

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