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Responding to the Middle East riots allegedly sparked by the retracted Newsweek Quran-in-toilet story, Democratic Rep. John Conyers Jr. has proposed a congressional resolution that condemns defamation of Islam’s book.
According to Conyers’ weblog, the resolution was drafted to oppose religious intolerance.
The House of Representatives, therefore, according to the text:
(1) condemns bigotry, acts of violence, and intolerance against any religious group, including our friends, neighbors, and citizens of the Islamic faith;
(2) declares that the civil rights and civil liberties of all individuals, including those of the Islamic faith, should be protected;
(3) recognizes that the Quran, the holy book of Islam, as any other holy book of any religion, should be treated with dignity and respect; and
(4) calls upon local, State, and Federal authorities to work to prevent bias-motivated crimes and acts against all individuals, including those of the Islamic faith.
Critics of attempts to enact such laws in the U.S. point to the loss of civil rights experienced in other nations.
Under an Italian law against defaming Islam, best-selling writer and journalist Oriana Fallaci, who resides in the U.S., was ordered this week to stand trial in her home country for what she wrote in a recent book.
(Posted on May 27, 2005)