Tennessee (IINA) - The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) called for a hate crime investigation of vandalism targeting a Tennessee mosque.
CAIR is also calling on President Donald Trump to speak out against the rising level of Islamophobia and anti-Muslim incidents nationwide.
Officials with the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro said the mosque was vandalized overnight with obscene anti-Islam graffiti. Slices of bacon were also used to spell out some messages and bacon were wrapped around one of the exterior doors of the mosque.
It is noteworthy that the mosque has been targeted by hate many times in recent years. "This apparent hate attack on a house of worship is just the latest incident in a troubling spike in bias-motivated crimes targeting mosques and American Muslims nationwide," said CAIR Department to Monitor and Combat Islamophobia Director Corey Saylor. "Our nation's leaders, beginning with President Donald Trump, need to speak out forcefully against Islamophobia and other forms of prejudice that inevitably result in such attacks."
Saylor noted that since the beginning of the year, CAIR's national office has called for investigations of possible bias motives for dozens of other incidents targeting mosques in Colorado, Florida, Ohio, Iowa, Kentucky, Georgia, Arizona, Virginia, West Virginia, New Jersey, New York, Maryland, Texas, and a number of other states. By comparison, in the January-March period in 2016, CAIR recorded 19 such incidents.
On Monday, CAIR's New York chapter called on a person or persons who left a painting of Jesus on the cross at a mosque in that state to learn what Muslims actually believe.
Also, CAIR condemned racist vandalism by an apparent supporter of President Trump targeting a North Carolina family. A vandal spray-painted "Trump! Get out N******!" on the driveway of the Nigerian-born couple on Friday.
CAIR is offering Muslim community leaders free copies of its booklet, "Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety."
CAIR said it had witnessed an unprecedented increase in hate incidents targeting members of minority groups since the election of Trump.
Anti-Muslim bigots often use pigs or pork products to intentionally offend Muslims because of the Islamic prohibition on consuming pork products.
Source: International Islamic News Agency