Dear Colleague:

Please join us as an original co-sponsor of the resolution expressing the sense of Congress that the federal government should take steps to counter anti-Muslim sentiment. Over the last decade, the American Muslim community has confronted a festering level of suspicion which has manifested itself in hostile government policies and bias from the general public. A CBS/ New York Times poll released in mid-September showed that as many as 20 percent of Americans said they have negative feelings toward Muslims because of the September 11th terrorist attacks. While Congress has confronted some of the more violent manifestations of this bias, the general climate faced by the community has continued to create barriers to full participation in public life that should be addressed by official government policy.

We believe that this sense of Congress is a logical step toward sending the message that the American Muslim community should be able to enjoy the rights guaranteed under the Constitution to the same extent as all other Americans. Communities should be protected from the threat of violence and suspicion that was at the heart of last January’s thwarted attack against the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn, Michigan. They should also be able to rely on law enforcement’s fundamental integrity and respect for First Amendments protected rights. Ultimately, the American Muslim community should be able to rely on the federal government to lead the effort in fostering an open climate of understanding and cooperation. Only through a balanced examination of the challenges facing the nation will we establish a strong policy framework for protecting security, while respecting the Constitution and the interests of affected communities.

It is essential that the federal government send the message that we all must work together to guarantee the security of our country and that no community should be singled out for suspicion. We hope that you will join us in sending that message by co-sponsoring this resolution. To cosponsor or to find out more information, please call Keenan Keller of the Judiciary Committee Democratic staff at 5-6906.


Rep. John Conyers, Jr.

Rep. Andre Carson

Rep. Hansen Clarke

Continue reading on