A 57-year-old man named Edward Wright is being investigated for possible commission of a hate crime and has been charged with simple assault and bias intimidation after he walked into a mosque in Paterson, N.J. to complain about the adhan, the Islamic call to prayer, being broadcast over loudspeakers. If Wright is guilty, he should receive the due penalty for his crimes. At the same time, any controversy over the broadcast of the adhan in American cities is being dismissed as “bigotry” and “hate,” while reality, as is always the case with Leftist propaganda, is more complicated.
New Jersey 101.5 reported that Wright was arrested following an “encounter” at the Islamic Congregation of North Jersey: “Video posted to YouTube by the New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, shows surveillance footage of the man entering the mosque on Preakness Avenue in Paterson on Dec. 23. The full video includes repeated profanities.”
Wright was angry because of the broadcast of the call to prayer: “‘Everybody’s not Muslim here,’ the man yells on the video footage taken on a phone, with profanities laced in between. ‘I don’t want to hear that **** every day.’”
According to people who were present, Wright didn’t just complain: “Not seen in the video, witnesses said to police that Wright shoved and hit a prayer leader while yelling in a threatening manner. Wright is accused of pushing the man from the back, slapping a microphone from his hand and hitting his shoulder.”
How very interesting that the video shows Wright going into the mosque and out of the mosque, and the portion with audio captures his complaints, but the part where he allegedly shoved and hit a prayer leader isn’t captured. At a time when there are so very many false claims of anti-Muslim hate crimes, that should give investigators pause. It could be absolutely true that Wright assaulted people inside the mosque, and if he did, there is no justification for such behavior. But even if he did, the alleged assault should not obscure the fact that from the looks of the video, Edward Wright is obviously not a MAGA-hat-wearing “right-wing Islamophobe.” He is just a neighbor of the mosque who was fed up with the noise. Should his concerns and those of others like him be entirely dismissed as “bias”?
Many people have predicted for years that the assertion of supremacism involved in the broadcast of the call to prayer would lead to anger from non-Muslims, as it has in other countries. But as the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) makes clear in its response to Wright’s actions, any such anger is dismissed as “bigotry” and that’s that.
It is relevant that the adhan, prayed in Arabic, says this:
Allah is greater (Allahu akbar); intoned four times.
I testify that there is no God but Allah (Ashhadu anna la ila ill Allah); intoned twice.
I testify that Mohammed is Allah’s Prophet (Ashhadu anna Muhammadan rasul Allah); intoned twice.
Come to prayer (Hayya alas salah); intoned twice.
Come to security/salvation (Hayya alal falah); intoned twice.
Allah is greater (Allahu akbar); intoned twice.
There is no God but Allah (La ilah ill Allah); intoned once.
Dr. Gavin Ashenden, former chaplain to the British queen, who resigned his position in protest against a Qur’an reading in a Scottish church, observed that “the Muslim call to prayer is a dramatic piece of Islamic triumphalism. It proclaims Islam’s superiority over all other religions, and in so doing casts Jesus in the role of a charlatan and a liar. The Muslim god, Allah, is unknowable and has no son. Jesus was, therefore, a fraud in claiming He and the Father are one.”
Is Paterson, N.J. really wise to broadcast repeatedly a declaration of the superiority of Islam, a faith that directs its adherents to make war against Christians and other non-Muslims and subjugate them as inferiors under the hegemony of believers (cf. Qur’an 9:29)?
Is Paterson wise to broadcast the cry “Allahu akbar,” beloved of jihad terrorists the world over? Chief 9/11 hijacker Mohammed Atta wrote this in his letter to himself before carrying out his jihad mission: “When the confrontation begins, strike like champions who do not want to go back to this world. Shout, ‘Allahu Akbar,’ because this strikes fear in the hearts of the non-believers.” This is why the Fort Hood jihad killer, Nidal Malik Hasan, shouted it as he shot thirteen Americans in November 2009, and why so many other jihadis have used it essentially as an announcement that non-Muslims are about to die.
But in Paterson and all over America today, any such concerns will be dismissed out of hand as “Islamophobic.”
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 23 books including many bestsellers, such as The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), The Truth About Muhammad and The History of Jihad. His latest book is The Critical Qur’an. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.