It's Feel Good Friday and time to celebrate another group that focuses on civil liberties. Today, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, also known as CAIR.
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties organization, established in 1994 with the vision to "be a leading advocate for justice and mutual understanding." Their national headquarters are in Washington DC and they have regional chapters in 20 states, with the first one established in the San Francisco Bay Area!
Their mission, as explained on the website, is "to enhance understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding." They do this through a focus on media relations, government relations, education and advocacy.
Specific examples of this work include advocating on behalf of Muslims and others who have experienced religious discrimination and hate crimes, monitoring legislation and government activities that affect Muslims, sponsoring voter registration drives, condemning terrorism and all acts of violence against civilians, organizing training seminars and ensuring that an accurate portrayal of Islam and Muslims is presented to the American public. Whew! You can see a great example of how the Muslim community is supporting the Jewish community in this one minute video.
You can contribute to the work being done by CAIR in the usual ways - making a donation, volunteering your time and showing your support on social media by liking their Facebook page and following them on Twitter @CAIRNational. You can also do something very empowering and unique.
Visit the CAIR site, #RegisterMeFirst, and show your opposition to a Muslim registry by adding yourself to a map of the USA and pledging to register in solidarity. Share THAT on Twitter.