The Islamic Society of Milwaukee, the largest Muslim organization in the State of Wisconsin, and the Milwaukee Muslim Women’s Coalition send their thoughts and prayers and extend their support to our Jewish community members and partners in light of the tragic shooting at the Tree of Light Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Sadly, 11 members of several Jewish congregations were killed during the October 27th worship services.
As Muslim organizations, we unequivocally condemn the heinous and cowardly attack in Pittsburgh and we stand in solidarity with the Jewish community and all of our fellow citizens, of whatever race, religion or background, against intolerance, bigotry and hatred.
As a community and nation, we once again find ourselves grieving over innocent lives lost as a result of violence that is fueled by hate filled rhetoric. The hate speech that plagues our nation has targeted Jews, Muslims, Sikhs, immigrants and many others.
When politicians, including our own President, are major purveyors of divisive and often hateful attitudes and language, the hate becomes normalized in the society. We have seen how this demeaning speech and behavior empowers racists and bigots, allowing them the opportunity to freely express their own intolerant and sometimes violent views.
It also should be noted that the President did not publicly target and malign the attacker’s racial identity (white) and religion (Christian) as he would do with others, because the attacker was not from groups disfavored by the President. Of course, evil has no race, ethnicity or religion, and an entire religion or group should never be blamed for the acts of evil individuals.
If we want to be a truly united country, we must firmly adopt the belief that an attack on a synagogue is an attack on a mosque, a church, a temple, a gurdwara or any other place of worship. An attack against Jews is an attack against Muslims, immigrants, African Americans, Latinxs and any other community, all of which are an integral part of our great nation.
We are deeply saddened by the terrible loss in Pittsburgh. We call upon all people who value human dignity and human rights to work together to create a more united and loving country and a more just and peaceful world.