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Congressional resolutions about Islam

House resolution of 2007

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House resolution of 2007:

The house passed a resolution recognizing Islam as one of the great religions of the world and acknowledging the start of the lunar month of Ramadan.

The Pew Forum reported:

"U.S. Muslims are welcoming a congressional resolution commemorating the Islamic holy month of Ramadan as an important, if symbolic, sign that they are gaining acceptance in America."

"Still, conservatives critics say the resolution is an exercise in political correctness."

"Congress regularly passes resolutions commemorating holidays such as Christmas, Kwanzaa and Hanukkah. But the Oct. 2 vote marks the first time Congress has passed a resolution recognizing Ramadan, which ends Oct. 12 this year."

"The resolution was introduced by Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson, (D-TX), and co-sponsored by 30 other representatives, including Rep. Keith Ellison, (D-MN), Congress's first elected Muslim." 1

The text reads:

"Recognizing the commencement of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting and spiritual renewal, and commending Muslims in the United States and throughout the world for their faith.

Whereas since the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, threats and incidents of violence have been directed at law-abiding, patriotic Americans of African, Arab, and South Asian descent, particularly members of the Islamic faith;

Whereas, on September 14, 2001, the House of Representatives passed a concurrent resolution condemning bigotry and violence against Arab-Americans, American Muslims, and Americans from South Asia in the wake of the terrorist attacks;

Whereas it is estimated that there are approximately 1,500,000,000 Muslims worldwide;

Whereas Ramadan is the holy month of fasting and spiritual renewal for Muslims worldwide, and is the 9th month of the Muslim calendar year; and

Whereas the observance of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan commences at dusk on September 13, 2007, and continues for one lunar month: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That--

(1) during this time of conflict, in order to demonstrate solidarity with and support for members of the community of Islam in the United States and throughout the world, the House of Representatives recognizes the Islamic faith as one of the great religions of the world; and

(2) in observance of and out of respect for the commencement of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting and spiritual renewal, the House of Representatives acknowledges the onset of Ramadan and expresses its deepest respect to Muslims in the United States and throughout the world on this significant occasion." 2

The resolution passed unanimously, 376 to 0, in spite of 42 members of congress who abstained from the vote by voting "present." The 42 members included 41 Republicans and one Democrat. 3 Ton Tancredo (R-CO) was one of those voting "present." He issued a press release stating:

"This resolution is an example of the degree to which political correctness has captured the political and media elite in this country. I am not opposed to commending any religion for their faith. The problem is that any attempt to do so for Jews or Christians is immediately condemned as 'breaching' the non-existent line between Church and State by the same elite." 3

Steve Benen of The Carpetbagger Report commented:

"Tancredo, predictably, doesn’t know what he’s talking about. First, Congress passes similar resolutions for all kinds of religious holidays, including Christmas, with nary a complaint from 'elites' or anyone else. Second, unless Tancredo and his allies managed to turn the country into some kind of theocracy without anyone noticing, the line between church and state is not 'non-existent'."
"The ugly xenophobe’s spokesperson said he voted 'present' instead of 'no' because 'a no vote could be construed as not commending religion in general'." 4

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References:

  1. Omar Sacirbey, "U.S. Muslims Hail Ramadan Resolution as Symbol of Acceptance," Religion News Service, 2007-OCT-05, at: http://pewforum.org/
  2. "Ramadan Bill - US Congress," World Muslim Congress, 2007-OCT-01, at: http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/
  3. "Tancredo refuses to vote for House resolution marking commencement of Ramadan," Hot Air blog, 2007-OCT-02, at: http://hotair.com/
  4. Steve Benen, "GOP lawmakers balk at Ramadan recognition," The Carpetbagger Report, 2007-OCT-03, at: http://www.thecarpetbaggerreport.com/

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Site navigation: Home page > World Religions > Islam > Congress resolution > here

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Copyright © 1999 to 2007, by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
First published on: 1999-DEC-15
Latest update: 2007-OCT-06
Author: B.A. Robinson

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