So much media noise was made in advance of Rep. Peter King’s recent “radical Islam” congressional investigation. Now, we can wait with baited breath to see if there will be just as much attention paid to Sen. Dick Durbin’s proposed “Muslim Civil Rights” panel.
Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), who chairs a subcommittee on the Senate Judiciary Committee, will hold a hearing on March 29 on protecting the civil rights of Muslim Americans. The hearing is being billed as the first of its kind for Congress.
Durbin said the hearing is necessary following an increase in anti-Muslim bigotry in the United States, including “[Koran] burnings, restrictions on mosque construction, hate crimes, hate speech, and other forms of discrimination.”
While Durbin aides deny that the hearing is in response to Rep. Peter King’s (R-N.Y.) investigation into “radicalization” within the American Muslim community, the contrast between the two is hard to miss.
According to the Washington Post, this will be a first of its kind hearing from the newly formed Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, Human Rights.
In a statement Tuesday night, Durbin emphasized that the Constitution “protects the free exercise of religion for all Americans.”
“During the course of our history, many religions have faced intolerance,” he said. “It is important for our generation to renew our founding charter’s commitment to religious diversity and to protect the liberties guaranteed by our Bill of Rights.”
Here’s hoping that this hearing, even if not a response to King’s, may be able to heal some of the divisions King’s hearings caused.