A community in Washington state has rallied around Mary Janda, a teacher at a middle school in Concrete, Washington, who is being attacked and intimidated by the Washington affiliate of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) for remarks that she made that CAIR considers racist. The district calls the allegations totally false.
While teaching a lesson on bullying last October, Janda, a veteran teacher of 21 years, referred to Hamas and the Taliban as examples of organizations that use violence to bully people.
An overflow crowd of 450 (half of the town’s population) attended a rally on Janda’s behalf March 22.
Neither the student nor her parents ever filed a complaint with the school district, but instead lodged the complaint directly with CAIR. In addition, neither the parent nor CAIR spoke to the teacher to hear her side of the story.
The district says it did not hear about the incident until it got a letter from CAIR a month after it happened demanding an investigation.
After investigating the incident, the school district concluded that Janda had done nothing wrong. "The discussion led to some members of groups who employ extreme acts such as Hamas and the Taliban … The point I was attempting to make was … that people who intend on imposing their will on others are bullies, whether they be Nazis or others … I was not talking about Muslim believers or Arabs in general but people that were trained to kill," explained Janda.
Still unsatisfied, CAIR further sent a request to the Dept. of Justice in February for a civil rights investigation, contacted the media and has since requested public records from the Concrete School District, including:
- Assurance that absolutely no retaliation occurs against the father, student, or any other parents (ironically, CAIR published the father’s name and the student’s photo on its Web site, while asking the media not to name the father or student).
- Provide any and all documents related to the incident.
- Clarify which textbooks and texts are used in the district.
- Clarify which diversity trainings or cultural competency trainings teachers complete.
- Clarify the religious accommodation policies of the district.
- Institute CAIR-WA’s diversity training for all employees of Concrete School District.
- The last item drew shouts of disapproval from the audience at the rally. Hooks broke in and said of CAIR’s requests, “In legal terms, that’s called ‘unreasonable.’”
The last item drew shouts of disapproval from the audience at the rally. ACT! For America Washington Director Kerry Hooks, whose organization was contacted to help Janda, said, “In legal terms, that’s called ‘unreasonable.’ ”
ACT! For America helped organize the rally on Janda’s behalf and also connected her to pro bono legal counsel.
"Hamas is a terrorist organization and the Taliban is who we’re fighting in Afghanistan," said to Brigette Gabriel, founder and president of ACT! For America.
"CAIR saw this as an opportunity to further its radical, cynical narrative that Muslims across America are constant victims of discrimination and civil rights abuses. CAIR is now alleging there is a pattern of discrimination in the school district, demanding extensive information on curriculum, textbooks, and internal correspondence," said Gabriel.
CAIR was designated by the federal government in 2007 as an unindicted co-conspirator in the largest terror-funding trial in U.S. history. In that trial, the Holy Land Foundation founders were found guilty of financing Hamas.
In 2009, a federal judge upheld CAIR’s designation because of "ample" evidence linking the organization to Hamas. CAIR is an outgrowth of the Islamic Association for Palestine, a Muslim Brotherhood front group. A 1991 U.S. Muslim Brotherhood strategy memo said the organization's work in America is "a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within…,” meaning a replacement of the U.S. Constitution — and its religious freedoms — with Sharia (Islamic) law.
Shahram Hadian, a former Muslim and the founder of the Truth In Love Project also spoke at the rally. “You’re not dealing with a civil rights group. That is a front,” said Hadian. “You are dealing with a group that has billions of dollars behind them from elements that want to further Islamic law.”
Hadian was born in Iran and is now a U.S. citizen. He said he witnessed “oppressive radical Islam” take over his country, and sees the same strategies being used by CAIR to insert its version of Islam into the public school system. “The access they’ve been given in our public schools is not being given to any other group,” he said. “They want specialized treatment for their brand of Islam.”
Shahram Hadian also said at the rally, “Despite Concrete's population of just over 700 people, an estimated 450 people overflowed a community meeting to show their support for teacher Mary Janda and the Concrete community, who are being maliciously bullied and maligned by the Muslim Brotherhood/HAMAS front-group, CAIR.
The crowd was so large that people spilled over into the foyer, nursery, and kitchen of the building. Another 40-50 people were standing outside listening through the open windows.
Hadian continued, “It was incredible to see the overwhelming outpouring of support for this courageous teacher, and to see the crowd rise in a standing ovation for her at the end of the night! People drove long distances to come and communicate to the people of Concrete, "You are not alone." They came from as far as Olympia, Pierce County, Bellingham, Canada, Walla Walla, and Idaho.”
In a letter to CAIR explaining her side of the story, Ms Janda reiterated, "I explained to her (the student) that I was not talking about Muslims and Arabs in general but groups that chose to impose their will by training people to intimidate and kill other people. This discussion is not about religious beliefs. It is related to a state mandate that public schools teach students about bullying and not allow it."
Yet, CAIR's complaint states that the teacher allegedly said that "Just like Hitler, Muslims train their kids to be martyrs and to kill innocent people." One of the students then said, "My father is a Muslim and those statements aren’t true."
CAIR also claims that the school district did not do enough to investigate the comments.