A Muslim lobby group increasingly known for its demand of apologies from public figures, is calling on legendary radio commentator Paul Harvey to say he is sorry for asserting Islam encourages killing.
The Washington, D.C.-based Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, contends Harvey defamed Islam in his noon commentary Thursday.
In a news item in which Harvey described the bloody nature of cockfight gambling in Iraq, he said: “Add to the thirst for blood a religion which encourages killing, and it is entirely understandable if Americans came to this bloody party unprepared.”
The comments from his Thursday noon broadcast can be heard on Harvey’s website, at the 8:25 mark. The section begins at 6:53.
CAIR wants an on-air apology from Harvey, who has 24 million weekly listeners on about 1,600 radio stations worldwide.
Harvey’s secretary, June Westgaard, told WorldNetDaily the radio commentator is seeking clarification from CAIR and could not respond at the moment.
As WorldNetDaily reported, last month CAIR demanded an apology from radio counselor Dr. Laura Schlessinger for an alleged “anti-Muslim tirade” on her program. Schlessinger, however, told her listeners no apology was necessary, and said, “It’s absurd that anyone would even imagine that I was expressing disdain for everyone who is a Muslim or who is an Arab.”
Earlier this week, CAIR filed a $2 million lawsuit against U.S. Rep. Cass Ballenger, R-N.C., for asserting in a newspaper interview CAIR raises funds for terror groups.
CAIR spokesman Ibrahim Hooper insists Islam’s holy book, the Quran, proves Harvey’s statement is false.
“We had hoped that a respected broadcast professional like Mr. Harvey would not join the growing number of Islamophobic hate-mongers in our society,” Hooper said. “He falsely attributes to Islam two things that are specifically prohibited by our faith, murder and cruelty to animals.”
Hooper added Islam also prohibits gambling.
He argues Islam’s prophet, Muhammad, said one of the greatest sins is “to murder a human being.” Also, Muhammad spoke against animal cruelty, noting a woman was punished by Allah because she did not provide a cat with food and water.
He cited the Quran, which says: “There is no beast that walks on earth and no bird that flies on its two wings that is not Allah’s creature. Unto their Sustainer shall they [all] be gathered.”
In 1999, CAIR organized a campaign that led to Harvey issuing an on-air apology to Muslims for remarks that seemed to suggest Islam was a “fraudulent religion.”