OH, COME ON – AT 8:07 P.M. ET: Wow. Here's a real case of the pot calling the kettle black, or of color, or whatever you prefer. From, yes, Al-Jazeerah:
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a Washington-based Muslim civil rights and advocacy group, today expressed concern about the reported rise in the number of anti-government and anti-immigrant extremist groups during the past year.
[Become a Fan of CAIR on Facebook.]
CAIR cited a report released today by the respected Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). That report, titled "Rage on the Right," states in part:
"Furious anti-immigrant vigilante groups soared by nearly 80%, adding some 136 new groups during 2009. And, most remarkably of all, so-called 'Patriot' groups -- militias and other organizations that see the federal government as part of a plot to impose 'one-world government' on liberty-loving Americans -- came roaring back after years out of the limelight... The 'tea parties' and similar groups that have sprung up in recent months cannot fairly be considered extremist groups, but they are shot through with rich veins of radical ideas, conspiracy theories and racism."
SEE: Rage on the Right -- The Year in Hate and Extremism Anti-Government Groups Show Surge, Watchdog Warns (AOL News)
"American Muslims are concerned that groups expressing extremist anti-immigrant and anti-government views are the same ones that promote anti-Muslim bigotry," said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. "Whenever extremism of any kind flourishes, all those who seek to preserve our nation's cherished values of tolerance and inclusion must speak out."
COMMENT: Look, no sane person wants to see the rise of extremist militia groups, no matter what side they're on. And there is reason for concern, although the Southern Poverty Law Center has a very definite leftist point of view, and its reports require verification.
But CAIR might put its own house in order first. Too many people who've been associated with CAIR have, in the view of many expert observers, troubling backgrounds.
March 7, 2010