“Sad & Fearful Muslims”
CAIRO – Fears of harassment and attacks by Christian missionaries have forced the cancellation of the biggest outdoor festival of Arab Americans in the United States.
“It’s unfortunate there are groups who are seeking to create problems and incite people in a community where people are trying to build bridges of diversity,” Suehaila Amen, 34, of Dearborn, toldÂ Detroit Free Press.
Arab-Americans were planning to hold the annual Arab International Festival in Dearborn on June 15-17.
But organizers decided to cancel this year’s festival over worries of new tension with Christian missionaries.
“The one year hiatus will allow organizers to explore all opportunities for the upcoming year,” reads a statement on the American-Arab Chamber of Commerce’s website.
Featuring live music and performances, carnival rides, henna designs, crafts and jewelry, the outdoor festival aims to promote Arab-American culture and local business.
But the 18-year event saw tension in recent years after attacks by Christian missionaries, forcing city officials to move the festival to open space to a public park to restrict access.
In 2009, a group of missionaries yelled at visitors to the festival “that they were going to hell because they were Muslims”.
Some missionaries also posted videos of the encounters, sparking complaints about the Muslim community in Dearborn.
Tension escalated the following year, resulting in the arrest of a number of missionaries, who hit back by filing lawsuits against the city on claims of restricting missionaries’ freedom of expression at the festival.
Some have said that treatment at the festival proves that Dearborn is under Islamic Shari`ah, a claim the mayor has repeatedly dismissed as ludicrous.
The situation worsened last year after a group of missionaries brought a pig’s head mounted on a pole along with signs that denigrated Islam and Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him).
‘We made them do it’, you see? Its our fault… why can’t we just submit….
But enough, back to reality:
Â Muslims Stone Christians in Dearborn, MI
Posted byÂ David Wood/ Answering Muslims
Dearborn–After growing religious tensions between some Christian missionaries and local Muslims, the annual Arab International Festival in Dearborn has been canceled for this year, organizers said Friday.
The announcement left many disappointed that a small number of aggressive extremists could ruin what had become a tradition in the eastern section of Dearborn, which has a significant number of Arab Americans.
The city and organizers were facing increased insurance and liability costs because of the tensions and lawsuits over the festival. Last month, the City of Dearborn had proposed moving the festival to a park instead of the traditional location on Warren Avenue in order to decrease conflict.
But Fay Baydoun, director of the American-Arab Chamber of Commerce, said Friday that it would have been impossible to organize a successful event in time at the new location. Baydoun said she hopes that next year’s festival will “come back better and stronger.” (Continue Reading.)
Be sure to read the comments on Niraj’s article, to see how he’s managed to convince his readers that a handful of Christian “extremists” caused all of the problems at the festival. I suspect that, if people like Niraj had reported honestly on what was happening at the festival in 2009, the problems would have been addressed and dealt with, and the festival would continue to this day.