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Thursday, May 23, 2019

Tennesse District Attorney Under Fire for Anti-Islam Comments, refuses to Apologize


Tennesse District Attorney Under Fire for Anti-Islam Comments, refuses to Apologize

MAY 22, 2019 9:30 AM BY CHRISTINE DOUGLASS-WILLIAMS85 COMMENTS

Tennessee District Attorney Craig Northcott  is facing a barrage of criticism, not only from the usual cry-wolf suspect, CAIR, but also from his own Republican camp after rather controversial comments about Islam…..

Northcott’s comments appeared last month on a Facebook thread started by Daniel Berry, the chairman of Coffee County’s Young Republicans organization….Berry, who is running for local office, asked his followers if it is ever acceptable to stereotype an entire group and said it is not OK to stereotype Muslims based on the actions of a few extremists….

Northcott jumped in to claim that Islam is not a legitimate religion and that being a Muslim is no different than “being part of the KKK, Aryan Nation, etc.” He said that every Muslim “by definition” supports an “evil belief system whether they understand/act on it or not.”

He also brought up his beliefs about the U.S. Constitution.

“There are no constitutional rights. There are God given rights protected by the constitution. If you don’t believe in the one true God, there is nothing to protect.

“Tennessee Official Refuses To Apologize For Anti-Muslim Comments”, by Carol Kuruvilla, Huffington Post, May 21, 2019:

A Tennessee district attorney is refusing to apologize after Muslim leaders rebuked him for sharing virulently Islamophobic beliefs in a series of social media posts.

Muslim advocacy groups are calling on Coffee County District Attorney Craig Northcott to resign after they learned of statements he made on Facebook in mid-April painting Islam and all Muslims as inherently “evil” and “violent.”

The Council on American-Islamic Relations called Northcott “clearly unfit” to serve as a district attorney.

“Anti-Muslim bigotry has no place in the administration of justice in Tennessee or anywhere in America,” CAIR’s government affairs director, Robert S. McCaw, said on Friday.

The Nashville-based American Muslim Advisory Council told HuffPost that Northcott’s statements compromise his ability to execute his duties in a “fair and just manner.”

“When you perpetuate stereotypes and vilify another group of people, that’s not legitimate criticism, it is hate speech,” AMAC’s middle Tennessee program manager, Sabina Mohyuddin, said in a statement. “It is exactly this kind of hate speech against Muslims by elected officials that [leads] to bullying in schools, discrimination, and hate crimes.”

Despite the backlash he’s received over the social media posts, Northcott dug in his heels on Saturday, telling his Facebook followers, “I am not resigning.”

“If they figured I would apologize for calling hate in any form evil, they miscalculated,” he wrote. “If they expect me to denounce my faith because of their tactics, they are going to be disappointed.”

Northcott’s comments appeared last month on a Facebook thread started by Daniel Berry, the chairman of Coffee County’s Young Republicans organization. The independent Tennessee news website TN Holler published screenshots last Thursday of the conversation between Berry and Northcott after it was no longer publicly available online (Berry has since made the conversation public).

Berry, who is running for local office, asked his followers if it is ever acceptable to stereotype an entire group and said it is not OK to stereotype Muslims based on the actions of a few extremists.

Northcott jumped in to claim that Islam is not a legitimate religion and that being a Muslim is no different than “being part of the KKK, Aryan Nation, etc.” He said that every Muslim “by definition” supports an “evil belief system whether they understand/act on it or not.”

He also brought up his beliefs about the U.S. Constitution.

“There are no constitutional rights. There are God given rights protected by the constitution. If you don’t believe in the one true God, there is nothing to protect. No one other than God has given us any rights,” Northcott reportedly wrote.

Berry pushed back, saying that as an elected official, Northcott is supposed to represent everyone in his district regardless of their religious beliefs. In response, Northcott argued that he defends freedom of religion even for “those who reject the Truth of God’s Word.” But he added that there are “limits to the exercise of this right” and again suggested that Islam is inherently violent.

Muslim leaders were particularly troubled by Northcott’s line of thinking, which they say implies that Muslims don’t have constitutional rights…..

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