Yesterday, the Indianapolis Jewish Community Relations Council sent a letter to the Muslim Alliance of Indiana expressing solidarity with the Muslim community following the murder of three Muslim students in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Full text of the letter can be found below:
February 17, 2015
Dr. Razi Nalim, President
The Muslim Alliance of Indiana
1100 W. 42nd St. #125 ~ Indianapolis, IN 46208
Dear Razi and Friends at MAI,
On behalf of the Indianapolis Jewish Community Relations Council, which represents the organized Jewish community and dozens of Jewish organizations and synagogues in greater Indianapolis and throughout Indiana, we write to share our condolences and to express our shock and horror over the tragic murder of Deah Shaddy Barakat, Yusor Mohammad, and Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Although authorities continue to investigate whether anti-Muslim hate was a motivating factor in this senseless act, we know that many Americans, including Muslim Americans, have an understandable fear that such animus played a role, and we welcome the FBI’s decision to investigate the incident as a hate crime.
We affirm our belief that no individual should feel compelled to remove items central to their religious identity – whether it is a Jewish man wearing a kippah or a Muslim woman wearing a hijab – out of fear for personal security.
Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia, along with other forms of bigotry and hatred, are direct affronts to American and Jewish values of inclusivity and pluralism, and to our belief that all human beings are created in the image of God. An act of violence directed at Muslims is an act that unequivocally harms us all.
As members of minority communities, we must help one another through difficult and sometimes dangerous times by standing together against all forms of bigotry and prejudice, and by raising both our individual and collective voices to denounce threats and condemn attacks when they occur.
As a community with a long history of facing discrimination and violence, the Jewish community stands with the Muslim community in our abhorrence of the murder of these Muslim students in North Carolina. We hope this expression of support and understanding from the Jewish community provides some comfort at this difficult time.
Shelby Anderson Lindsey Mintz
JCRC President JCRC Executive Director