CA Interfaith Coalition Asks GOP to Repudiate Candidate’s Hate Speech

Candidate Rabbi Schifren said, "I am an Islamophobe..."

(May 14, 2012 - Los Angeles) 

The California chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CA), along with Jewish Voice for Peace-Los Angeles, Progressive Christians Uniting and Interfaith Communities United for Justice & Peace, today called on state and national Republican Party leaders to repudiate hate speech by a candidate for the U.S. Senate who recently told a cheering audience, “I am an Islamophobe, and everything we need to know about Islam, we learned on 9-11.”

During his May 3 speech in San Mateo, Calif., candidate Rabbi Nachum Shifren also resorted to racist language when he said, “We’re getting sucker-punched because we as white—yes I said it!—as white, Christian Americans are being taught that somehow we are to blame for all the problems.”

Video: Calif. GOP Senate Candidate Says ‘I AM an Islamophobe’ 

SEE: Offensive US Senate California Candidate Speeches Captured on Video

In a joint statement, the Muslim, Christian and Jewish organizations said:

“There should be no place for hate speech of any kind in our nation’s political discourse. Whenever one faith or ethnicity is targeted by hate, it is our duty as Americans to challenge that hatred and to instead promote mutual understanding and tolerance. We urge GOP leaders in California and nationwide to repudiate this candidate’s hate speech and to encourage greater respect for diversity within party ranks.”

A number of recent reports have documented the growth and promotion of Islamophobia nationwide.

CAIR: Same Hate, New Target
Center for American Progress: Fear, Inc.
Southern Poverty Law Center: Jihad Against Islam
People for the American Way: The Right-Wing Playbook on Anti-Muslim Extremism

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its
mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

CAIR-LA Communications Manager Munira Syeda, Tel: 714-776-1847, Email:;
CAIR-SFBA Executive Director Zahra Billoo, Tel: 626-252-0885, Email:;
Jewish Voice for Peace, Email:;
Progressive Christians Uniting, Email:; Interfaith Communities United for Justice & Peace, E-mail:  

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