Bill Maher is a commentator and comedian who hosts the political satire talk show Real Time with Bill Maher on HBO.
Maher stirred controversy on his October 3rd, 2014 broadcast when he claimed that “liberal” ideologies - like freedom of speech, freedom of religion, marriage equality, and gender equity - were incompatible with Islam. Maher and fellow panelist Sam Harris argued throughout the broadcast that, in Islam, women and gays are subjugated and Muslims lack the freedom to leave their religion.
Three individuals dissented: actor Ben Affleck, former Republican National Committee Chair Michael Steele, and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof. Affleck questioned whether Maher was speaking of “the codified doctrine of Islam”, suggesting that Maher had usurped the voices of American Muslims with stereotypes.
Maher said during the same program:
United West leader Tom Trento says the Florida-based group works, “to unite western countries, western civilizations, about 23, 24, 25 western countries, against the Ummah. Who knows what the Umaah is? The Ummah is the term for the family, the family of nations of Islam.” The United West is part of the inner core of the U.S. Islamophobia network.
According to the group’s website, “TheUnitedWest.org is a Non-Profit 501(c)(3) Tax Exempt Organization.” However, no organization named “The United West” appears in Florida legal records or the IRS’s database of tax-exempt organizations.
The address that United West offers to potential donors is, however, the same as Security Research Associates, Inc. a registered non-profit headed by Tom Trento.
In 2007, Trento renamed his Colorado-based Christian Research Associates as Security Research Associates, Inc. in Florida. For a time, Trento publicly said his organization was the Florida Security Council and more recently changed it to United West.
The purpose of the frequent name changes is obscure. In Security Research Associates tax-forms filed between 2010-2012 and signed by Trento the “doing business as” space is left blank.
Boykin was the United States Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence. He is currently the executive vice president of the Family Research Council.
Boykin asserts that "[Islam] should not be protected under the First Amendment," that there should be "no mosques in America," that Islam is a “totalitarian way of life,” and that there can be no interfaith dialogue or cooperation between Muslims and Christians.
In 2003, President Bush rebuked Boykin for his anti-Muslim stance. Writing in the New York Times on October 20, 2003, Brian Knowlton reported, “Boykin had said, among other things, that Muslims worship an ‘idol,’ not a ‘real God,’ and that America's enemy in the fight with Islamic extremism was ‘a guy called Satan.’”
Mayor Richard Meehan of Ocean City, Md., ignored requests to reconsider inviting Boykin to speak at the Mayor's Prayer Breakfast on January 26, 2012. After advocacy and veteran groups raised similar concerns about a scheduled Boykin speech at West Point, the general withdrew from the event.
In June 2012, Boykin claimed Dearborn, Michigan is “almost one hundred percent Muslim and operating under sharia law now.”
In 2013, Boykin warned, “If you are tied to the mainstream media you will never know anything about the true nature of Islam.”
Rabbi Shalom Lewis is a cleric at the Congregation Etz Chaim synagogue in Marietta, Georgia. Etz Chaim’s website states Lewis “generates a caring warmth”, but his hateful speech about Islam is alarming and barbaric.
In October 2014, Lewis sermonized that Muslims “are here” and a “holy crusade” to “exterminate [Islam] utterly and absolutely” is required.
Lewis attempts to make his bigotry more approachable by noting radical Islam makes up a small percentage of the faith and even claims he analyzed every word of the sermon, questioning if he “was treading into bigotry.” Trying to draw parallels between Islam and historically evil forces, Lewis asserts “Most Nazis were not Germans – but it did not matter. Most Russians were not Stalinists – but it did not matter. Most Muslims are not terrorists – but it does not matter.” Lewis conceals a call for genocide against over 1 billion Muslims as a rational fight against evil.
Other notably hateful remarks from Lewis’ sermon include:
This website is a project of CAIR's Department to Monitor and Combat Islamophobia.