A US Islamic civil rights group announced a campaign on Monday with plans to register some one million Muslim American voters ahead of the 2016 presidential election in a bid to respond to growing fears of Islamophobia around the United States.
The US Council of Muslim Organizations’ (USCMO) plan will include “educational, outreach and civic empowerment initiatives” and aim to address “growing Islamophobia in America and to enhance national security through the promotion of freedom and justice,” the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) explained in a statement on Monday.
Initiatives proposed under USCMO’s plan include “One America,” which aims to register one million voters before the 2016 presidential election, as well as increase emergency preparedness operations for Islamic institutions and Muslims in a bid to address an alleged increase in the number of hate incidents nationwide.
“USCMO leaders and members understand the magnitude of the challenge facing our nation and our community and will not allow either Islamophobes or un-Islamic extremist groups like ISIS [Islamic State] to define American Muslims or to decide our fate,” USCMO Secretary General Oussama Jammal said. “American Muslims will define themselves and will chart their own destiny by securing both our faith and the security of America.”
In recent months, Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump has proposed banning Muslims from entering the United States, and also proposed establishing an Islamic registry, as well as tighter surveillance of certain mosques.