The Council on American Islamic Relations is urging Muslims, especially those planning to Haj travel to Mecca (a city which the rest of us infidel Americans are forbidden to enter), to be exquisitely senitive to any slights they may feel they encounter as airline passengers. From The American Muslim:
A prominent national Islamic civil rights and advocacy group said today that the number of American Muslims taking part in this year’s pilgrimage to Mecca, or Hajj, is expected to increase because the religious observance falls during the winter holidays.
(American Muslims are just beginning to leave for Hajj and will be returning in early January. Some 10,000 American Muslims go on Hajj each year. To find a local mosque, go to: http://islamicfinder.org/
Following recent allegations of “flying while Muslim” airport profiling incidents, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is advising those going on pilgrimage to be aware of their civil and legal rights as airline passengers. CAIR is also offering a toll-free hotline (1-800-784-7526) for anyone who believes their rights were violated.
In its “ Your Rights and Responsibilities as an American Muslim” pocket guide, CAIR states:
“As an airline passenger, you are entitled to courteous, respectful and non-stigmatizing treatment by airline and security personnel. You have the right to complain about treatment that you believe is discriminatory. If you believe you have been treated in a discriminatory manner, immediately:
1. Ask for the names and ID numbers of all persons involved in the incident. Be sure to write this information down.
2. Ask to speak to a supervisor.
3. Ask if you have been singled out because of your name, looks, dress, race, ethnicity, faith, or national origin.
4. Ask witnesses to give you their names and contact information.
5. Write down a statement of facts immediately after the incident. Be sure to include the flight number, the flight date, and the name of the airline.
6. Contact CAIR to file a report
As an American non-Muslim deeply offended that I am forbidden to enter Islam's holiest city, CAIR seems to have no advice or phone numbers for me to register my protest over this outrageous discrimination. Apparently for the Council, "American-Islamic Relations" are a one-way street, in which Muslims are always the victims, and Americans are always the ones who have to do the accommodating. If "relations" are their concern, why aren't they concerned about discrimination on the Islamic side? It seems they are concerned with American submission to Islam, not with any mutual relationship.
If CAIR is campaigning to have Islam treat Americans as equals, just as it demands Americans treat Muslims, that would be welcome news. I am not holding my breath.
Hat tip: Ummah News Links