March 23rd, 2011
05:45 PM ET

Should Senate hold hearings on Muslims' rights in U.S.?


The House Homeland Security Committee held a hearing entitled "The Extent of Radicalization in the American Muslim Community and that Community's Response" on Capitol Hill on March 10. (PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

A Senate Judiciary subcommittee led by Democratic Dick Durbin of Illinois will hold a hearing next week on Muslim-Americans' civil rights. Aren't they the same as every other Americans' civil rights? And is this what needs our immediate attention at this time? Sometimes the people in Washington can make you want to stick sharp objects in your eyes.

The Durbin circus comes just weeks after the circus led by Rep. Peter King, R-New York. He held congressional hearings on the topic of the radicalization of Muslim Americans. Those hearings sparked protests and demonstrations. Critics called them a witch hunt and said they sent the wrong message to Muslim-Americans.

Durbin is apparently trying to send a different message to Muslim-Americans, as if he doesn't have other, more important things to do. These hearings will be the first held by the new subcommittee on the Constitution, civil rights, human rights and the law.

Durbin says he's called for the hearings because there's been an uptick in anti-Muslim sentiment in this country. He says it's important to renew the nation's "commitment to religious diversity and to protect the liberties guaranteed by our Bill of Rights." Right.

However, according to The Washington Times, the latest FBI data show that hate crimes against Muslims account for just 9.3% of religious hate crimes in the United States. More than 70% of religious hate crimes were against Jews.

Meanwhile, we have no federal budget, three wars and we're broke. Lovely.

Here’s my question to you: Should the Senate hold hearings on Muslims’ rights in the United States?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Muslims • Religion • Senate
March 23rd, 2011
05:00 PM ET

France wants committee to run war in Libya. Good idea?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Defense Secretary Robert Gates - who is refreshingly open and honest - said: "We haven't done something like this, kind of on the fly before."
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He was talking about the coalition attacks on Moammar Gadhafi's forces in Libya, why the United States was still in control, why tensions are rising among members of the coalition, why there's no plan for any group or nation to take the lead. The allies, you see, aren't getting along so well. In fact, there are reports today that the coalition is falling apart.

France yesterday suggested a committee be formed - outside of NATO - to oversee the military operations. It would be a political steering committee and would include members of the Arab League. See if a committee is running the war, no one has to take responsibility if things go to hell and everyone can take credit if they go well.

The French were early backers of the no-fly zone and were the first nation to launch airstrikes against Libya on Saturday.

The Italians have accused the French of not originally backing a NATO-run operation to be in a better position for oil contracts when a new government is established in Libya.

It's not just the French causing problems…

Russia's defense minister yesterday called for a cease-fire in Libya.

Germany today pulled its naval ships out of NATO operations in the Mediterranean over a disagreement over the Libyan campaign's direction. It's not pretty.

Foreign ministers from Western coalition partners will meet in London Tuesday along with members of the Arab League and the African Union to see what can be done.

Here’s my question to you: France wants a committee to run the war in Libya. Is that a good idea?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: France • Libya