PPRC observes National Day of Solidarity with Muslim, Arab and South Asian
Immigrants, joins 80+ groups planning for March 20th global mobilization.
Event: PPRC Friday Rally observes National Day of Solidarity with Muslim,
Arab and South Asian Immigrants, joins 80+ groups planning for March 20th
Date: Friday, February 20th, 2004
Time: 5:00 p.m.
Place: Pioneer Courthouse Square
The Portland Peaceful Response Coalition’s Friday rally will observe the
National Day of Solidarity with Muslim, Arab and South Asian Immigrants,
joining with actions in San Francisco and other large US cities, condemning
the scapegoating and criminalization of immigrant communities, especially in
the aftermath of the 9-11 attacks. "Our neighbors of Islamic, Middle East
and South Asian heritage have been subjected to unprecedented harassment, to
mass roundups, indefinite detentions, secret trials, and vicious bigoted
news reporting and editorials in our local media, and we stand with them to
oppose these hateful policies," said Will Seaman, a volunteer with the PPRC.
"We will not allow the David Reinhards and Lars Larsons of the world to spew
their hateful bigotry without challenge, and we will not let John Ashcroft
dismantle the Bill of Rights as he pursues a witch hunt against our
neighbors in the immigrant community."
David Reinhard is a local columnist who made issues of the Muslim beard and
the use of an anglicized name by one of the Portland Seven in commentaries
on their prosecution. Larson, a local radio host, took part in a tour of
Israel paid for by Project Interchange, an organization that promotes
pro-Israeli government views of the Israel/Palestine conflict. His
broadcasts from Israel supporting the illegal occupation of the West Bank
were challenged and condemned as biased and insulting to Palestinians.
The Friday rally will also kick off a month of community outreach in support
of an international day of action against war and occupation, set to take
place on March 20th. "Already we’ve signed on over eighty local peace and
social action groups in support of this global mobilization against war,"
said Mikel Clayhold, another PPRC volunteer. "Organized labor, the faith
community, advocates for the poor and the homeless, are again coming
together to speak out again against Bush’s criminal wars and against an
occupation that will continue to claim US soldiers’ lives until we succeed
in ending it."
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