Saturday, August 27, 2011

Is There Anti-Muslim Sentiment In The Libertarian Party of Queens County & The New York Libertarian Party?

It is very hard to know what people think about Muslims and Islam and whether they harbor prejudices. It is even more difficult to know the motivations behind actions taken that could be perceived by some to reflect negative opinions or sentiments about certain groups of people. Nevertheless, facts are facts and you can draw your own conclusions with respect to the information provided.

On August 26, 2011, Dallwyn Merck, Secretary of the Libertarian Party of Queens County, announced a "Call Your Dog Mohammad" Campaign. In a notarized statement, he said, in part:

I, Dallwyn Merck, hereby initiate a “Call Your Dog Mohammad” campaign. Every time you see your dog or any dog licking or sniffing its own penis, testes, vagina or anus, or that of another dog, I urge you to say to the dog in a loud voice, “STOP IT MOHAMMAD".

On August 15, 2011, Ronald S. Ramo, Treasurer of the Libertarian Party of Queens County, wrote a letter to the New York City Parks Department challenging the presence of a "Celebrate Ramadan" sign located in one of the Flower Fields at Columbus Plaza in downtown Brooklyn, New York. In that letter, he wrote, in part:

I was in Columbus Plaza today, and I noticed there was a sign declaring Celebrate Ramadan. I would like to know if this sign was installed with the approval of the NYC Parks Dept. and if so, was any compensation paid to the city for such use. Lastly, could the NYC Parks Dept. please provide me any memo or other opinion papers that determined such a sign does not violate the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. 

On August 8, 2011, John Procida, Vice-Chair of the Libertarian Party of Queens County, discussed the issue of Muslims, Sharia Law & Immigration suggesting the possible need for special interrogations and de-brain washing of Muslim immigrants. In an e-mail, he wrote, in part:

I do have reservations about Muslims having the ability to integrate with our culture...sharia law is absolutely anti-American. I believe in a free society, but we do not have to permit the intentional planning and destroying of our government and our constitution. I think that Muslims might have to go through a special interrogation. They should be required to swear to obey the laws of our government and denounce sharia law. Possibly a de-brain washing class would be required. Remember we did outlaw the Communist Party for similar reasons and intent. With all that said, the Koran says that they can lie in order to expand their faith. So how valid would Muslims swearing an oath be anyway?

In the New York Libertarian Party, there has been anti-Muslim sentiment for quite some time. It was most actively evident when Warren Redlich, a devout Conservative Jew, was seeking the gubernatorial nomination of the New York Libertarian Party in 2010 against Sam Sloan (a/k/a Haji Mohammed Ismail Sloan), a devout Muslim who speaks Khowar (a language spoken in Chitral, Pakistan) and has been married three times and has eight children by five women. Sam Sloan was denied the opportunity to communicate with the 400-500 prospective delegates in advance of the Nominating Convention and, therefore, was not able to encourage them to attend the convention to support his candidacy. Warren Redlich was then handed the gubernatorial nomination with only 27 delegates voting in his favor. Two subsequent lawsuits filed by Sam Sloan regarding the delegate list issue and actual fraud he claimed took place during the vote (when delegates placed scraps of paper into a passing hat) were both dismissed on technical grounds.

Sam Sloan was strongly backed by Dr. Tom Stevens, Political Director and State Committee Representative of the Libertarian Party of Queens County. Dr. Stevens stated the following with respect to his support of Sam Sloan and his view of different religious faiths:

I did not care what religion Sam Sloan belonged to. There was no doubt in my mind that Sam Sloan was more libertarian than Warren Redlich. Redlich was a registered Republican Party member whose main theme was that government should "stop wasting money". Sloan, on the other hand, had been a Libertarian Party activist for many years and was running on a platform that was fully libertarian.

It sickened me to see the whispering campaign and anti-Muslim comments made about Haji Mohammed Ismail Sloan prior to the New York Libertarian Party's Nominating Convention in 2010. It also disturbed me to see NYLP insiders use their power to deny Sam Sloan a fair shot to campaign for the gubernatorial nomination.

The discrimination I observed inspired me to invite Hamdi Rifai, an American-Muslim attorney active in American-Islamic affairs, to address the Libertarian Party of Queens County on September 11, 2010 to speak on the topic of "Who Is The Enemy In America's War On Terror?".

I recognize there are religious zealots and extremists in all cultures and in all religions. We need to combat ignorance and intolerance with reason and logic. I fully support the right of all people to free speech and to live their lives as they see fit so long as they do not initiate force against others. Every person's right to life, liberty and property should be respected.

The New York Libertarian Party moved to suspend the memberships of Sam Sloan and Dr. Tom Stevens before the year was out. Sam Sloan was removed as a member of both the Manhattan Libertarian Party and the New York Libertarian Party. Dr. Tom Stevens resigned his membership in the Manhattan Libertarian Party and resigned his Life Membership in the New York Libertarian Party. Both remain active promoting liberty and tolerance in the Libertarian Party.

No comments:

Post a Comment