Target: Martha Montalvo, Chief of Police for Houston
Goal: Ensure that the Muslim community is not subject to harassment and violent attacks before and after prayer.
Three masked men ambushed a man outside a mosque in Houston, stabbing and shooting him. The assailants gave no warning, and fled the scene after the attack. The man, a local eye doctor on his way to pray, is expected to survive the attack. However, this is the third attack on Muslims in Houston in past few weeks. It is clear that in the current political climate, certain hateful individuals feel empowered to attack Muslim communities across America. Many in Houston’s Muslim community have reported feeling unsafe.
Islamophobic violence is on the rise in America. This rise accelerated in 2015, and shows no sign of abating. While some of these hate crimes are disorganized, there are at least 37 known hate groups that have a primary goal of targeting Muslims throughout the U.S., and at almost the same amount that promote violence against Muslims. As well as attacks on mosques and community centers, there have also been reports of attacks on Muslim-owned businesses.
Given these realities, law enforcement must provide additional protection to Mosques, community centers, and targeted businesses to ensure the safety of the Houston Muslim communities. Furthermore, attacks such as these should be treated as hate crimes, and pursued as such. The culprits must be found and prosecuted. Sign our petition and demand extra protection for the Muslim community in Houston, and that this case be treated as a hate crime.
Dear Chief of Police Montalvo,
I was alarmed to hear of the attack on Dr. Arslan Tajammul outside of the Madrasah Islamiah Mosque, and shocked to learn that this is the third attack on Houston’s Muslim community in the past few weeks. While I was encouraged to hear that your department provided the mosque and community with extra protection that evening, I believe more needs to be done to protect the Muslim community in Houston.
Given the current political climate, and the recent rise of Islamophobic attacks across America it is clear that the Muslim community does not face a temporary threat. Mosques, community centers, and business may require a permanent increase in security in order to ensure the community is safe. Furthermore, attacks on Muslim people without a clear motive, especially outside of mosques, should be treated as hate crimes.
Dr Arslan Tajammul received no warning before he was stabbed and shot. His assailants wore masks and fled immediately. I believe that shows that this was not some random act of violence, but a planned act of terrorism. I urge you to do everything in your power to bring the culprits to justice.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Dane Hillard