Monday, October 31, 2011

Stirring the Pot of Controversy

The internet is abuzz with a religious controversy that at its core now appears to have no basis other than a lawyer trying to stir up trouble for Muslims.

When I initially read this article, I just shook my head in disbelief at the absurdity of the situation: a complaint under investigation by the District of Columbia Office of Human Rights about Muslim students attending Catholic University alleging that their human rights are being violated because they have not been provided a haven on campus free of Christian symbolism in which to pray. In addition, the complaint further says that Muslim students were also being denied the right to form their own Muslim student group.

Sounds rather absurd, doesn’t it? I mean, what exactly would one expect at a Catholic university?

Well, as it turns out, there are in fact no Muslim students at all behind this complaint. It is the work of an attorney and law professor at George Washington University Law School, John F. Banzhaf III. One would have to wonder what his motivations are. Is he truly concerned with Muslim students’ rights, or is he just trying to cause trouble for Muslims by making them appear to be demanding, frivolous, and unreasonable?

To read more about this topic:

Charges Agsinst Catholic University Were Not Made by Muslims,
by The American Muslim

Attorney: Crosses at Catholic University violate human rights of Muslim students, at

Catholic University's Muslim Students Should Have Prayer Rooms Without Crucifix, Complaint States,
on The Huffington Post


  1. OMG, really?

    Religous universities are up front about what they stand for, so if one is in disagreement, then s/he doesn't apply. This attorney is smokin' something no one else has had a hit of apparently. Hmmm...

  2. Susie for some reason the links you posted do not go live but are re-directed to say they are 'not found' and instuct the viewer to return to your blog.

  3. Thanks, Wendy - for bringing that to my attention. Hopefully the problem has been fixed now.

  4. Hello, Susie!
    Thanks for a very interesting blog. I just ran across your entry regarding this lawsuit and clicked one of the links to get a better understanding of the situation. That led me to Google the lawyer in question, and lo and behold, he has his own website, full of his accomplishments of frivolous, money-making lawsuits that include tobacco (did anyone say, cha ching!) and fast food.
    I just want to say that I don't think he is out to cause trouble for Muslims, but rather to hurt a Catholic institution. (Disclaimer: I am Catholic.And no, I am not being paranoid.) Unfortunately, in order to achieve his goal, he seems to have decided to use Muslim students and their religion. It also seems that he took it upon himself to initiate this action.
    In my opinion, he has a strong, if not abnormal, need for attention.

  5. I have to agree with the anonymous poster that the person making the complaint is trying to hurt a Catholic institution. I am Catholic also.

    I like the following from the Syracuse site:

    Patrick Reilly, the president of the Cardinal Newman Society, an organization that promotes Catholic identity on college campuses, told Fox News he was stunned by the complaint.

    “This attorney is really turning civil rights on its head,” he said. “He’s using the law for his own discrimination against the Catholic institution and essentially saying Catholic University cannot operate according to Catholic principles.”

    It's sad to say but there are agencies of the US government that are trying to make Catholic institutions and Catholic individuals go against their Catholic principles... will it ever end???


  6. I wonder what Banzhaf is trying to do. He certainly would not win friends among Muslims students (who would all recognize the right of religious schools to use their religious symbols on campus). I wonder if he is simply promoting himself by suing.

  7. Very naughty of him.
    Muslims students cause enough trouble of this nature for themselves, without some outsider throwing in a bit more.

    Something for them to reflect upon down at the mosque: This story, though fake, was (based upon past behaviour of the co-religionists) so plausible that everybody believed it.