Ontario Rights Commission Finds Maclean’s to be Islamophobic

Posted by admin on Apr 9th, 2008

CAIR-CAN Applauds Ontario Rights Commission Statement on Maclean’s
Wednesday, April 09, 2008 5:07 pm

(Ottawa, Canada – April 9, 2008) – The Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CAN) today welcomed the Ontario Human Rights Commission statement on the Maclean’s magazine complaint filed by four Osgoode Hall Law School students. The Commission today stated it had “serious concerns about the content of a number of articles concerning Muslims that have been published by Maclean’s magazine and other media outlets.” The Commission also viewed the media coverage as “contributing to Islamophobia and promoting societal intolerance towards Muslims, Arabs and South Asian Canadians.”

The students, Ali Ahmed, Khurrum Awan, Muneeza Sheikh and Naseem Mithoowani, launched the complaint following Maclean’s’ publication of an article by Mark Steyn entitled “The future belongs to Islam.” They claimed it was one of 22 pieces targeting Muslims that appeared in the magazine’s pages.

“The Commission’s statement provides a telling commentary on journalism that targets rather than reports on Muslims.

“Even though it found the complaint to be outside its mandate, the Commission determined that it was necessary to say that the articles were promoting societal tensions and contributing to Islamophobia in Canada.

“Freedom of expression should not be a vehicle to stigmatize and marginalize individual Canadians or the communities to which they belong. The Commission sent a strong message, that the freedom of expression is the cornerstone of democracy and must be protected, but also that freedoms come with responsibilities,” said Sameer Zuberi, a spokesman for CAIR-CAN.

“Ali Ahmed, Khurrum Awan, Muneeza Sheikh and Naseem Mithoowani must be recognized for their diligence in pursuing the claims and their efforts to combat Islamophobia,” Zuberi added.

SEE: Statement by Ontario Human Rights Commission on the Maclean’s magazine complaint click http://www.ohrc.on.ca/en/resources/news/en/resources/news/statement

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