-By Warner Todd Huston
A group dedicated to warning America about the evils of radical Islamists and the growing wave of terror they commit is coming under fire in Des Plaines. The group meets at the city’s public library but now several Muslim groups are seeking to have government quash the anti-terror group’s right to use the public facility.
The group, ACT! For America, has been meeting at the Des Plaines, Illinois public library for months, but as they gear up to offer a screening of a film that warns of radical Islamism, several Muslim groups have started to illicitly call for the public library to ban the group.
ACT!’s local leader, Sara Schmidt, insists that their group is not about hate but is instead about informing the public of the dangers.
The DesPlaines Journal & Topics reports that Schmidt said, “We just simply try to educate the public about these terrible things going on around the world because of these militants.”
The film that ACT! wants to screen for the public features Dutch politician and anti-Islamist Geert Wilders and is titled “Warning to America.”
Once ACT! started passing out fliers about the film, our own radical Islamist groups here in the US began to call for the library to throw ACT! out of its facilities.
Such an action would, of course, be wholly un-Constitutional, not that the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) is much interested in the law.
Ahmed Rehab, executive director of the Chicago chapter of CAIR, jumped into the fight claiming that the library would somehow be “tainted” by ACT!’s use of the facility.
“It’s a safe haven for knowledge, education, and enlightenment,” he said. “That place is now being tarnished.”
By his logic, then, opponents could charge that DesPlaines itself is “tarnished” by having allowed the building of Mosques in the first place. But, logic would surely escape him.
Unsurprisingly, local DesPlaines Muslims agree with CAIR that the group’s Constitutional rights should be quashed. Fazal Mahmood, board president of the Islamic Community Center of Des Plaines, for instance, insisted, “I think they should cancel it.”
“I understand and respect freedom of speech, but where do you stop?” he said.
Well, by banning freedom of speech, I suppose. That is likely the only place it would “stop,” Mr. Mahmood. But, OK, let’s do it and let’s start with yours, shall we? Or better yet, let’s not start at all.
In any case, it is illegal for the DesPlaines library, a publicly, tax dollar supported facility, to ban ACT! from holding its meetings or showing its film. The Supreme Court has said so as recent as 1988.
But, then again, we had that ol’ Constitution thingie as far back as 1787 telling us we have a right to speech, so…