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Counterprotesters hold signs and shout slogans during an anti-Shariah rally in Seattle on June 10, 2017. Photo courtesy of Reuters/David RyderCounterprotesters hold signs and shout slogans during an anti-Shariah rally in Seattle ona June 10, 2017. Photo courtesy of Reuters/David Ryder

If Muslims have their way, said the man with the megaphone, there will be no justice for America’s goats.

“Why do Muslims rape their goats so much?” Jim Gilles asked his fellow protesters gathered on Saturday, June 10 outside one of the largest Islamic worship centers in the Dallas area. “It’s because they’re perverted, demonic, sex-crazed … sick perverts.”

Such outlandish statements appeared to seem completely plausible to many of the 200 or so participants of the rally held outside the Islamic Association of North Texas in the suburb of Richardson.

The demonstration was one of about two dozen “Marches against Shariah” organized Saturday in cities across the country by ACT for America, a self-styled grass-roots national security organization.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks extremist groups including neo-Nazis, Ku Klux Klansmen and black separatists, considers it to be a hate group. The SPLC says that since ACT for America’s founding 10 years ago, it “has grown to become the largest grassroots anti-Muslim group” in the country, with 1,000 local chapters and a claimed membership of 280,000.

There were also anti-Sharia rallies in major cities such as Boston, Chicago, Denver and Seattle. In some places, the protests were met by counter-demonstrations, and in some cases there were scuffles between two sides. In Manhattan, the counter rally was significantly larger, the New York Daily News reported.

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Jim MacGregor
5 years ago

Gosh, next some will want to apply Church Canon Law to our courts.

Richard Bell
5 years ago

Demonstrations against the specter of Shariah in America are cover for anti-Muslim action, which is despicable.
But, what is the author's angle? Consider, for example, what the author may intend by this statement:
"Gabriel, in her writings, in interviews with right-wing publications, and in other public pronouncements, has often blurred any line between 'good' and 'bad' Islam—as did many of her followers in Richardson. (Gilles, for example, carried a large placard that said, 'Every real Muslim is a Jihadist!')"
1. Why the sneer-quotes around "good" and "bad"? Does the author want to imply that there is no such thing as good Islam or no such thing as bad Islam? If so, the author wants to imply that there is within Islam no line to be blurred; so, the author should not find any such pronouncements of Gabriel to be objectionable.
2. How does the statement on the placard that Gilles carried blur a line dividing Islam? I have not met anyone professing to be a real Muslim who denies being, thereby, a jihadist whose struggle is both personal and social and political. However, all of the self-professed Muslims I know deny being violent jihadists. Does the author believe that Gilles's statement blurs this distinction between nonviolent jihadists and violent jihadists?

No Sharia
5 years ago

Sharia has no place in civilized circles. Willful ignorance has proven deadly for 1400 years.
JP2 had it right. Francis is not helping.
If more people would be honest, and call out hate speech and actions for what it is, we would all be members of ACT for America.

kevin davitt
5 years ago

But a good piece nevertheless.

kevin davitt
5 years ago

An odd choice of picture to run with this article - a bit misleading until one reads the caption.
At first glance my reaction was "Why would a Catholic priest be actively involved in such a demonstration?"

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