The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights  & The Leadership Conference Education Fund
The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

Resolution on the Scapegoating of Muslims and Other Communities of Color in the 2016 Presidential Campaign

Advocacy Letter - 12/09/15

Source: The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
Recipient: For Public Distribution

View the PDF of this letter here.



WHEREAS, the First Amendment to the United States Constitution states unequivocally that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” and

WHEREAS, Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states unequivocally that “everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance,” and

WHEREAS, our nation’s commitment to religious freedom and diversity has ultimately strengthened our national fabric, and has enabled us to lead the rest of the world by example; and

WHEREAS, world history is replete with shameful examples of official discrimination against religious, racial, and ethnic groups, with catastrophic results; and

WHEREAS, a proposal to ban Muslims – or the members of any particular religion – from entering the United States, in addition to raising profound constitutional doubts and repudiating international human rights principles, would be impossible to enforce in any meaningful fashion, and would simply discriminate against honest people rather than doing anything to enhance our national security; and

WHEREAS, the 2016 presidential campaign has incited disturbing levels of fear mongering and demagoguery against racial, ethnic, and religious minority communities that betray our core values and undermine our moral authority abroad;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights condemns in the strongest possible terms the divisive and corrosive anti-Muslim rhetoric in the 2016 presidential campaign, such as calls to exclude immigrants and refugees on the basis of religion, establish databases of Muslim-American citizens, or engage in the blanket surveillance of mosques; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, The Leadership Conference urges all candidates in the 2016 presidential race to strongly condemn the scapegoating of racial, ethnic, and religious minorities, to reaffirm our commitment to protect religious freedom under the Constitution and international human rights agreements, and to embrace the diversity of our nation as its strength.

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Inc., is a nonpartisan organization that neither supports nor opposes candidates for public office.

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