Muslims Say Crosses at Catholic University Violate “Human Rights”

Fox New Radio, October 26, 2011

The Washington, D.C. Office of Human Rights confirmed that it is investigating allegations that Catholic University violated the human rights of Muslim students by not allowing them to form a Muslim student group and by not providing them rooms without Christian symbols for their daily prayers.

The investigation alleges that Muslim students “must perform their prayers surrounded by symbols of Catholicism–e.g., a wooden crucifix, paintings of Jesus, pictures of priests and theologians which many Muslim students find inappropriate.”

A spokesperson for the Office of Human Rights told Fox News they had received a 60-page complaint against the private university. {snip}

The complaint was filed by John Banzhaf, an attorney and professor at George Washington University Law School. Banzhaf has been involved in previous litigation against the school involving the same-sex residence halls. He also alleged in his complaint involving Muslim students that women at the university were being discriminated against. {snip}

Banzhaf said some Muslim students were particularly offended because they had to meditate in the school’s chapels “and at the cathedral that looms over the entire campus–the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.”

“It shouldn’t be too difficult somewhere on the campus for the university to set aside a small room where Muslims can pray without having to stare up and be looked down upon by a cross of Jesus,” he told Fox News.

{snip}

In a 2010 interview with National Public Radio, university president John Garvey acknowledged that they don’t set aside prayer rooms for Muslim students.

“We make classrooms available, or our chapels are places where they can pray,” he told NPR. “We don’t offer Halal meat, although there are always meals that conform to Halal regulations, that allow students to do what they want.”

Banzhaf said that it is technically not illegal for Catholic University to refuse to provide rooms devoid of religious icons.

“It may not be illegal, but it suggests they are acting improperly and probably with malice,” he said. {snip}

As for the creation of a Muslim student group, Banzhaf said the university has an association of Jewish students–so why not a Muslim group?

“I think they are entitled as a matter of law to be able to form a Muslim student association and to have the same privileges as associations,” he said. {snip}

Garvey, in his 2010 interview with NPR, addressed that issue.

“It’s just not something that we view as an activity that we want to sponsor because we’re a Catholic institution rather than Muslim,” he said.

{snip}

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  • (AWG) Average White Guy / Indianapolis

    It’s called ‘intolerance’.

    When Christians erect symbols, they are being intolerant of others.

    When others erect symbols, Christians are intolerant when they complain.

  • Anonymous

    Why do Muslims want to go to Catholic schools so bad? They want Christian education and Christian knowledge, but they cannot bear to see Christian symbols? This is, on its face, extremely absurd!

    Easy solution: Don’t go to a Catholic school!

  • Epiales

    The university is Catholic, and is allowed to make its own rules regarding other religions. Those who are offended by the Catholic rules can choose a secular university. The government should not mediate or prosecute in this case.

  • Anonymous

    What “human right” is being violated? Maybe they need a lesson in correlation.

  • MAJ

    What are apparently devout muslims doing at Catholic University in the first place? Are these people stupid or what? How much more of a warning do they need that it might not be the best place for muslims to enroll.

    I’m not even sure what Jews are doing at Catholic University but I suspect they are there for the education and are at least tolerant/understanding of the religious aspects of the school. Muslims show no such tolerance.

    And since Amren readers often do this, let’s turn things around. Can you imagine Catholic students at a muslim school in the middle east demanding that the mosques and koran be removed so crosses could be put up?

    Can you say “beheading?”

  • Question Diversity

    There is a meme among leftists that Muslims who want Shari’ah Law officially attached to American legal jurisprudence only want it among themselves, to resolve civil disputes. Translation: Those of us who are worrying about it being imposed beyond that are “Islamophobes.”

    After reading this story, do you still buy that line?

  • Anonymous

    Nobody is holding a gun to their heads to attend a Catholic school. If they do not like it they can start their own and meditate all they want surrounded by halfmoons or whatever. I hope the Catholics will not buckle. The nerve of some people.

  • Anonymous

    Did these students not realize they were Muslims until *after* they enrolled at Catholic University? It was their choice. If Christian symbols bother them, maybe they shouldn’t have enrolled there. Or maybe they can shut their eyes when they pray.

  • highduke

    I hope they don’t cave but I’m not optimistic given that the Vatican seems to have made peace with dhimmitude and is aiming to suck up to Islam judging by Ratzinger’s limp-wristed statements & actions. Please AmRen, keep us posted about CU.

  • madison grant

    Prof John Banzhaf may be the most despicably litigious man in the US. For 45 years he’s been filing frivolous anti-discrimination and anti-smoking suits to harass various businesses.

    He just filed a complaint against Catholic University for discrimination against Muslims while admitting that what the school does is “not technically illegal”.

  • Bill R

    It’s a private school. It’s a private CATHOLIC school. What the hell are the muslims doing there anyway, except to demand Christianity be removed and Islam recognized even in a purely Catholic Christian private school. Let them go to George Washington instead, since their lawyer seems to love them so much. That being so….let me guess.

    These muslims are black.

  • Anonymous

    “The investigation alleges that Muslim students “must perform their prayers surrounded by symbols of Catholicism—e.g., a wooden crucifix, paintings of Jesus, pictures of priests and theologians which many Muslim students find inappropriate.”

    I suggest that if they find the religious atmosphere in a Catholic school “inappropriate” or “offensive” that they should find themselves another, more accommodating school to attend. Better yet, go back to a Muslim country, where they can pray without Catholic symbols offending them, and where WE won’t be offended by THEM. I am not a Catholic, but I wouldn’t presume to go into a Catholic school, then demand that they accommodate me by removing their icons and rearranging everything to suit my lack of faith. (But then again, I am white, and somewhat civilized…)

  • LastWMinNYC

    I’m not getting something here…? With a choice of over 4,000 colleges and universities in America, what’s the problem? Is there something confusing or misleading about the name “Catholic University”?

  • Henry

    “As for the creation of a Muslim student group, Banzhaf said the university has an association of Jewish students—so why not a Muslim group?” Of course Jews have a student group and so does every other racial minority in this once might White nation. How about this, how about Whites start forming White and ethnically White student groups, and if these “minorities” don’t like it, then they can go back to their native lands where they belong!

  • Old Soldier

    I did a quick check on Google Maps and (big surprise) there are 3 major mosques within 2 miles of the campus. Problem solved.

  • Whirlwinder

    Muslims are in this country on stealth jihad to subvert our Constitution and rule of law to sharia law and dominate our way of life. This is the death of a 1000 cuts. If they were here to assimilate into our culture, they would not be bringing suit.

    We need to rid ourselves of these barbaric peoples. But our Muslim-in-Chief seems to like them a lot. What the heck, lets send him back to Indonesia!

  • sbuffalonative

    What the school should do is simply say something like, ‘this is a Catholic school with all that entails. Anyone who applies to this Catholic school is aware it is a Catholic school and they will be surrounded by Catholic and Christian iconography. Anyone who objects to Catholic and Christian symbols is free to find a non-Catholic school which will serve their needs’.

    No anger. No hostility. Just state the facts. All it takes is conviction and a backbone.

    Of course, it’s likely the school will accommodate Muslims and give them what they demand lest they be call ‘intolerant’ (which is exactly what the Muslim students are).

  • Anonymous

    Typical Marxist trick of “critical theory”.

    Make Whiteys start doubting the value of our uniqueness.

    Claim that you are offended by the culture of those who oppress you, and sure enough, as long as that culture is Whitey, they will surrender up whatever you demand.

    That’s how White Humanity has gotten itself into such a suicidal state- surrender, surrender, surrender to the blacks, Mexicans, and Muslims.

    We don’t deserve to keep anything at all, given how little we value what we do have as soon as our lessers come around making demands of us.

    Whites put an end to White Supremacy, thus, Whites deserve nothing but Heaven’s contempt and the burden of slavery.

  • Anonymous

    I have to laugh at how pathetic we have become. Even our own PRIVATE institutions are subject to appeasement.

    If our race continues on this path we deserve everything we get.

    On a Lighter note I hope this next conference goes through, Ive already laid plans to have a decent weekend in Tennessee ( wish it was some place else but what can you do?).

  • ghw

    “Muslim students were particularly offended because they had to meditate in the school’s chapels “and at the cathedral that looms over the entire campus”

    ……………….

    They have CHOSEN to go to a Catholic school! What else would they expect to find there, but Christian symbols?

    And no one is FORCING them to meditate there. If they really must, if they’re so uncomfortable, they can go elsehwhere to do their meditating.

  • Roger

    Why are they offended by pictures and icons of Jesus? Isn’t he considered a prophet in Islam?

  • waspranger

    To all that say let them go somewhere else…..RIGHT ON, I would add, what are they doing there in the first place, it is a Catholic school, is there a law now that they have to admit non Catholics. I guess I am showing my age (I’m 50) but in my day in the 60s and 70s (not that long ago in the great scheme of things) only CATHOLICS could get admitted to CATHOLIC schools, this being grammar schools, High schools and colleges. Lets say admitted members of the Church Of Satan want to go, do they Oh Okay ? If it is a religious institution than it should be open to ONLY those of that religious faith plain and simple. I doubt very much that Muslims they would try to get in to yeshivas. This sort of nonsense cuts all across our social spectrum IE, ONE lesbian goes to E-harmony.com and sees only straight women and sues and sues successfully because there are no lesbians for her on that site, AND like the Muslims ( although they’re more than one in the instance) they get away with it, and they’re most likely to get their way here as well, and that’s the most disturbing and troubling thing of all.

  • flyingtiger

    If Moslems don’t like the Catholic symbols than they should leave.

    BTW, the local catholic colleges have moslems. What is going on? Why are they encouraging this? Meanwhile good Catholics cannot get in to a good catholic college.

  • Anonymous

    I am offended by Islam, its Muslims, their mindset, attitude, “culture,” and behaviour.

    What about me?

  • Jim

    The school should sue the moron professor.

  • Bartender

    This type of behavior never ceases to amaze me. I’m a Bartender in a Club that’s in an area with alot of other Bars. Aprox. half of those are Sports Bars. At least once a day someone will come in to my Rock & Roll Hipster type Club & say “hey, can you put on the game?” Never would I think to walk into a Sports Bar & say “hey, can we put on Mtv?”

    The Entightlement Culture is out of hand. Esp. With blacks & muslems. black muslems? Forget about it!

  • Anonymous

    The next step for muslims will be to claim that crosses on top of churches are offensive and need to be removed.

  • Frank

    Solution: do not allow Muslims into the college!

  • Kenelm Digby

    The other side of the coin is this:

    Why did a catholic university admit muslim students in the first place?

    At the very least muslim students could have signed a declaration recognising the catholic university’s ethos as a condition before entry.

    Unfortunately, the catholic university is very prepared to accept muslims if they pay fees – and not so prepared to accept catholics who can’t pay fees.

    Thing haven’t moved on much since Martin Luther.

  • Howard W. Campbell

    If I were to attend BYU, I have to follow along with the codes and rules in place. Should I wish to smoke, drink coffee, or do some other things, I should probably go to Utah Valley University or another state supported college. The professors may be Mormon, but they cannot impose their religious beliefs on me. Over in the Middle East, things stop or slow down for daily prayers. There is a Mosque on the Kuwait Naval Base and you hear the calls to prayer at some ridiculous hours. Christians are not very well “accommodated” in that part of the world. How about starting your own Universities?

  • Cain

    This is a private catholic school, they have no business at this school.

  • Irish in Paris

    “had received a 60-page complaint against the private university.”

    60 pages! The verbosity, the self-importance of these people!

  • June

    This weak administration will never do what’s truly needed – stop immigration completely = and let those who, unfortunately,are already here, know that they either conform to our laws and traditions or leave, we will continue down the path to oblivion.

    Surely, our forefathers never envisioned the tragedy that our great nation has become.

  • Anonymous

    No one is forcing Muslims to attend a Catholic University. If they don’t like the fact that crosses are displayed, then they can transfer to another school.

    Muslims, along with the leftist D.C. Office of Human Rights, are fully aware they have the option to attend secular schools. They chose a Catholic school with the intention of making complaints and dismantling it from within. The fact that crosses are displayed was not the deterrent, but the very thing that drew them all together to this game.

  • Harumphty Dumpty

    “As for the creation of a Muslim student group, Banzhaf said the university has an association of Jewish students – so why not a Muslim group?”

    Tut, tut. Apparently Prof. Banzhaf doesn’t understand that some minorities are more equal than others.

    And, I apologize for the ignorance of this question, but do Jews pray?

    If they do, then how do they manage to pray among all the crosses but the muslims can’t?

  • The Great Unwashed

    I was raised Catholic but frankly Catholic University and Catholics in general deserve what they are getting. The Catholic church IS a major player in immigration sponsorship and now its comming back to bite them.

  • gary

    How many Catholic kids were turned away from that school so Muslims could secure a spot. How many Protestants were excluded? How many Orthodox Christians were passed over?

  • NJGuy

    Since Jesus is one of the major prophets in the Koran I dont see how it would be offensive to Muslims. Of course when are lawsuits really about anything other than money?

  • olewhitelady

    I believe that most complaints of discrimination against Moslems are part of an organized effort to break down all barriers to an eventual U.S. subservience to Islam. There are constant reports of Moslems doing even outrageous things to create a stir and then crying foul–such as boarding an airplane and doing everything to convince the flight staff that terrorism is afoot. They no doubt hope that lawsuits will make airlines and other companies afraid to challenge anything they do.

    As long as Eric Holder is AG, there will be no relief from tolerance for these actions. It’s of paramount importance that we get him and his boss out of office next year.

  • Joseph

    Let me guess what’s next: The T.G.I. Friday’s restaurant chain has to amend it’s name to T.A.(Allah)I. Friday’s so not to offend Muslims.

  • Anonymous

    This is nothing but another incremental step towards a Muslim stranglehold on everything. They are anti-white, anti-western civilization, anti-freedom of religion (for everybody except themselves), and anti-everything non-Muslim controlled. I would think that the Catholic Church would have enough attorneys to think up the bright idea that since the CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY is privately owned by the CATHOLIC CHURCH maybe they have the right to have CATHOLIC SYMBOLS in their own places of study and worship? Why do Muslims want to go to a Catholic University anyway? Didn’t they notice it was owned by a Christian religion somewhere along the enrollment and acceptance process?

  • Anonymous

    “It may not be illegal, but it suggests they are acting improperly and probably with malice,” he said.

    What is improper about a Christian church having Christian symbols? What is malicious about it? How does this violate their human rights? If a person doesn’t believe in something, it has no power over them. If I don’t believe in UFO’s for instance, pictures of UFO’s on the walls won’t bother me… If they really don’t believe in Christianity, Christian pictures shouldn’t affect them in any way. They need to get a grip and stop being so sensitive. They hold a way of life that is incompatible with American tradition, culture and belief, so they need to be deported elsewhere.

  • Fed Up

    Interesting! I maintain a huge Muslim population in the United States is a violation of MY rights. Our European ancestors founded this nation on the premise of a European (nearly all-White) population. Not the disgusting diversity our Liberal Intelligentsia slaver over with such glee.

  • Anonymous

    Think about this. What Muslim parents would allow their kids to attend a Catholic School? I am sure they would be very proud to tell their friends and family members that their kids are going to a Catholic School. Are you kidding. The FBI should have these students and their parents on their radar screens.

  • Allan

    Why souldn’t the Muslims rent space on campus as do many businesses and the like? But no, the Muslims expect the Christians to give them everything because they are the true religion. Let me tell you something, Mohammed; the Roman Catholic Church also claims to be the only true religion.

  • Veritas

    When one considers the daily tribulations that Christians in Muslim countries are subjected to, it is stunning to read of the temerity of this guy Banzhaf. I rubbed my eyes, checked my reading glasses three times, and still I wonder if this guy is mentally ill, or am I suppose to suspend disbelief at his ridiculous proposal. To even imagine something similar happening in Egypt or Iraq, or anyplace else in the middle east where Christians still exist is almost in the realm of science fiction.

    I’ll retire to Bedlam.

  • BB

    Read Athena Kerry’s Vdare essay on her catholic university here:

    http://goo.gl/KtO1l

    Here are two student employment qestions excerpted:

    * How do you address the needs of non-Christian students who may need worship space? and

    * How would you encourage any students who may not support GLBTQA to become “persons of care”?

  • Anonymous

    And the dismantling of the West by Muslims continues at a fast pace. It’s a Catholic school!

    Out here in CA. they removed God from the HS text books and added Gay history. Stay tuned for Muslim whining that this is against their beliefs and they are being discriminated against.

  • Anonymous

    The likeness of Christ on the Cross is something that they hate. Too bad. You’re in our house, now.

    Jesus was scourged in the worst possible ways, beaten, spat on, cursed, tormented, and then nailed to a Cross to die over a period of three hours, for us. HIS “Human Rights” were violated in ways we cannot even begin to imagine, all for us.

    If the Muslims find the Cross, and the likeness of Christ upon it so offensive, then they can take their selves off of the Catholic Campuses, and start their own Colleges.

    I will call the Catholic Colleges, and speak to their Administrators, and demand that they stand firm in the faith, and tell these Cultist anti-Christs to find somewhere else to go. Maybe someplace really hot.

  • Anonymous

    I belong to the Maronite Catholic Church which is based in Lebanon. From what I understand, Muslims have been attending Catholic/Christian schools & universities there for decades without incident, even during the 1975-90 Lebanese civil war.

    I think its ironic that they would make such demands on Catholic University of America, but then again their ultimate goal is to drive Christianity out of its birthplace, the Near East. Look at the horrible treatment Coptic Christians have received in Egypt, the slaughter of Chaldean Catholics in Iraq since GW 2 & what the Armeneans have endured during the past century to get an idea of their overall agenda. I hope the Catholic Church doesn’t capitulate to these “radicals” because it could spill over into other areas of American Christianity. That would be the death knoll of all who uphold our nation’s tradition of religous freedom.

  • ghw

    I wonder what is the basis of their complaint? I really would like to ask them.

    As I understand it, Jesus is recognized as one of the prophets of Islam. What, therefore, is their problem with seeing a prophet honored?

  • ghw

    Unfortunately, the Catholic university is very prepared to accept muslims if they pay fees – and not so prepared to accept Catholics who can’t pay.

    — K.Digby

    …………………..

    Come to think of it, I wonder just who is paying the fees of these Moslem students? (We, the taxpayers?)

  • ghw

    A point to be made is that the university is already granting them a concession by generously giving them a place to hold their prayer sessions — which the university DOESN’T EVEN HAVE TO DO. This does not pretend to be a secular or state institution.

    Nonetheless, those concessions are not enough! The Moslems demand more. And then how much more will there be after that?

    This illustrates very well that the notions of “Rights” and “Tolerance” are Western concepts that are utterly foreign to this alien mentality. There is no way to integrate them or accommodate with them, because no matter how much they get, they will always want more — until they have it all.

  • Anonymous

    This is what we get for allowing any nonwhite and their religions into our nation. This whole “thou shall not offend” is just another “reason” they use to hit us over the head with. We were fools to begin with to ever let them into our nation and then let them tell us that OUR rights say we cannot offend them or kick them out of our country. WE can do both!

  • linda

    I find it hard to believe that a faithful Muslim would even want to go to a Catholic University? What could be their objective? To show peace and tolerance? Doubtful. They need to see why we believe Jesus was God on Earth? Na, they think he was just a prophet.. So why? Maybe to infiltrate and try to convert, maybe, looking for a good place to bomb? Hopefully not.

  • bob

    Sounds like a frivolous lawsuit and harassment by Banzhaf if he’s filing a lawsuit even though he acknowledges that they are doing nothing illegal. Maybe the university needs to file a countersuit for damages and legal expenses.

  • Anonymous

    For all of you wondering what Muslims are doing at a Catholic school…well…they’re there because it IS a Catholic school. It’s the same reason they send their women to work at major corporations (deep pockets) and then bring suit against the company for violating their “religious freedoms” when not allow them to wear their hijab while waiting on tables or selling tickets at Disneyland.

    They’re intent on destroying our country and those institutions by interjecting their disgusting Islam into the very fabric of our being. They are using our own Constitution against us to wage their “holy war” against us.

  • François

    When will the Muslims understand that they simply are not wanted in our western democracies?

  • Adi

    I’m so sick of these people. If you dont like this country and its culture, go to any one of 50+ officially muslim countries. Also, why do you enroll in a Catholic university? is to to continue waging lawfare, is it because your so called universities are garbage?

  • Anonymous

    “As for the creation of a Muslim student group, Banzhaf said the university has an association of Jewish students—so why not a Muslim group?”

    That is because the Jews of this country have a nation wide Jewish student organization, Hillel. There are others such as Chabad. There are branches of Hillel in most of the Catholic colleges. The muslims are perfectly free to do what the Jews did. Pay some rabbis and organizers to establish branches in universities. Rent, buy or build a building. Hold services and events to draw the students in.

    There are Catholic organizations such as the Newman clubs at all non Catholic universities. The Newman clubs did what the Jewish Hillel clubs did. They built their own organization and found their own space.

    In the military sometimes non Christians put an attractive drape over the crosses when they have services.

    One of the major industries in this country is the cultivation of grievances.