California, 23 Rabi’ul Awwal 1438/23 December 2016 (MINA) – Hundreds of people came out to a vigil Wednesday night against Islamophobia and racism on the west steps of the State Capitol in California.
Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) and Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR-CA) are organizing the vigil. The proposed Muslim ban and registry were among the topics at the vigil, IINA News reported.
“Our reaction really is to be proactive,” said CAIR-CA Legislative & Government Affairs Coordinator Yannina Casillas. “Donald Trump seems to go back and forth on what he will and will not do. That does n’t matter. What’s important is ensuring our community feels safe and secure.”
Many people who showed up weren’t Muslim but there to show support, according to media sources.
“Now, more than ever, on the shortest day of the year, after a dark election season, we must pledge to challenge injustice and build a society rooted in love and dignity for all peoples and communities,” said Nancy Fleischer, a leader of the local JVP chapter.
“These days, we must all unite to protect and support each other,” said Basim Elkarra, Executive Director of CAIR-SV.
JVP’s Network against Islamophobia will be holding similar events in 30 other cities across the country, timed to coincide with the winter solstice and days before Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of light.
Participants will hold electronic “candles” as eight vigilers read aloud from candle-imaged posters stating specific commitments against hate and for justice, one for each night of Hanukkah.
Refusing to be silent
We refuse to be silent about anti-Muslim and racist hate speech and hate crimes; we condemn state surveillance of the Muslim community; we fight anti-Muslim profiling and racial profiling in all its forms, and we call for an end to racist policing.
Participants will also display and recite teachings from Islam’s tradition of commitment to peace and justice.
The Council on American Islamic Relations 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.(T/R04/RS05)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)