‘Flying while Muslim’ is no reason to detain or remove passengers

“The recent settlement in the case of the six imams, or Islamic religious leaders, who said their rights were violated in 2006 when they were removed from a US Airways flight in Minnesota should not prevent anyone from acting on legitimate security concerns. But reports based solely on anti-Muslim or anti-Arab bias and hysteria should not be used as the basis for a ‘flying while Muslim’ incident.

“Absent actual suspicious behavior, merely offering one of the five-daily Islamic prayers in a terminal, speaking Arabic to a fellow passenger, wearing a head scarf, or ‘looking Muslim’ is insufficient justification to detain passengers or remove them from a flight.”

Ibrahim Hooper of CAIR at USA Today, 26 October 2009

See also “Flying imams in the rear-view mirror: What was the evidence against them?”, MinnPost, 26 October 2009