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NEWS
April 3, 2015 | By Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writer
Anti-Muslim advertising began appearing on SEPTA buses Wednesday in accordance with a federal court ruling that the transit agency could not selectively deny the ads because of their message. SEPTA has changed its policy and now refuses any political or public-issue advertising, so as not to single out any message, but it must run the ads on 84 buses until the end of the month to comply with the court ruling. As of Wednesday evening, the agency had not received any reports of vandalism or complaints about the ads, said spokeswoman Jerri Williams.
NEWS
March 28, 2015 | By Paul Nussbaum, Inquirer Staff Writer
SEPTA will not appeal a federal court ruling that the transit authority must accept virulently anti-Muslim advertising on its buses, SEPTA officials said Thursday. In accepting the ruling, SEPTA officials also said they have tightened the agency's advertising standards to legally prohibit such ads in the future. The black-and-white ads proclaim "Jew Hatred: It's in the Quran" and feature a photograph of a 1941 meeting between Hitler and Hajj Amin al-Husseini, a Palestinian Arab nationalist who made radio broadcasts supporting the Nazis.
NEWS
March 27, 2015 | BY BOB STEWART, Daily News Staff Writer stewarr@phillynews.com, 215-854-4890
NAZI LEADER Adolf Hitler could be featured on the next bus you ride in the Philadelphia area, after SEPTA decided not to appeal a recent federal court ruling that said it could not restrict ads that the transit authority previously called "disparaging" and anti-Islamic. American Freedom Defense Initiative co-founder Pamela Geller called the decision a "victory for truth and free speech" and said the ads will "increase public awareness" of her group's cause. Abby Stamelman Hocky, executive director of the Interfaith Center of Greater Philadelphia, yesterday said her organization was prepared "to mitigate whatever harm may be done" by the ads being seen in the community.
NEWS
March 18, 2015 | By Kevin Riordan, Inquirer Columnist
The Rev. Emanuel Nasir is a Christian living in Washington Township, Gloucester County. Shakila Rani, who is Muslim, lives in Gujranwala, Pakistan. Together, they are trying to improve the lives of Pakistani women who are being abused inside the home, are being denied educational and other opportunities, or have become the victims of violent attacks. Rani directs the Rehab Project, a provider of counseling and educational services, as well as legal and medical information, to about 50 women - most of whom are Muslim - annually.
NEWS
January 15, 2015 | By Michael Boren, Inquirer Staff Writer
Federal judges in Philadelphia raised questions Tuesday about a New York Police Department surveillance program that critics say unfairly targeted Muslim communities after 9/11. The 11 plaintiffs in the case - including an Army sergeant, a former schoolteacher, and an imam - have argued that the surveillance intimidated people from attending Muslim businesses and places of worship. Julio Fuentes, one of three appeals court judges hearing the appeal, said he would not want to attend a mosque if it was being watched, and compared the effect to a business losing money.
NEWS
December 29, 2014 | By Jonathan Lai, Inquirer Staff Writer
Invoking the life and legacy of Muslim activist leader Malcolm X and others, scores of demonstrators are expected at noon Saturday to join a rally organized by the Muslims Mobilized Against Police Brutality. The march, set to begin at LOVE Park, is the latest in weeks of demonstrations sparked by the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, unarmed black men, at the hands of police. Kameelah Rashad, the lead organizer of the event, said the event has particular importance because black Muslims, who have a tradition of activism, can face injustice on multiple fronts.
NEWS
December 29, 2014 | By Jonathan Lai, Inquirer Staff Writer
About 200 people marched and prayed in Center City on Saturday, the latest in weeks of demonstrations sparked by the deaths of Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and other black men at the hands of police. And though the protest at City Hall and LOVE Park echoed previous rallies - chants of "I can't breathe," signs declaring "Black lives matter!" and a "die-in" symbolizing lives cut short - a religious aspect ran through the event. It was organized by Muslims and began and ended with prayers.
NEWS
December 26, 2014 | BY JENNY DeHUFF, Daily News Staff Writer dehuffj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
MUSLIMS Mobilized Against Police Brutality, a new organization in Philadelphia, expects hundreds of participants at a march and rally tomorrow in Center City. The event, organized by the Muslim Wellness Foundation, the Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative and United Muslim Masjid, will begin at noon at 15th Street and JFK Boulevard. Kameelah Mu'Min Rashad, a coordinator, said the demonstration is designed to address police brutality directed against the black community. "Over the course of the last few weeks, we've been talking pointedly and having discussions about the political and social and legal implications of the events around Ferguson and New York and the psychological trauma evident in the black community as a result," she said.
NEWS
December 10, 2014 | BY JENNY DeHUFF, Daily News Staff Writer dehuffj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
AN ISLAMIC advocacy organization is suing a Bucks County township for discrimination after the town's zoning board rejected an application to erect a mosque. According to the lawsuit filed yesterday by CAIR-Philadelphia in federal court, Bensalem Township is demonstrating "burdensome, discriminatory and unreasonable land use regulations" by blocking local Muslims' ability to build a mosque. The proposed Islamic worship site would be the first in the suburban town just north of Philadelphia.
NEWS
November 4, 2014 | By Walter F. Naedele, Inquirer Staff Writer
The director of a major Muslim group told Muslim and Jewish women gathered Sunday that God "has put the spark of the divine in all of us. " Daisy Khan, executive director of the American Society for Muslim Advancement in New York City, was among the speakers at the Muslim-Jewish Women's Leadership Conference at Temple University. Its organizers called it "the first-ever national gathering of Muslim and Jewish women. " About 100 women participated. Khan urged audience members "to try to see things from God's perspective - that religions are part of the divine plan - and to see ourselves as part of the plan.
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