Anxious Muslims find out they're not alone

The following is an excerpt from originally published on November 23, 2016

In a large show of support, thousands of Americans have pledged or stated on social media with hashtags #RegisterMeFirst and #RegisterUs that if Muslims are forced to register, they’d line up in their place.

They include the heads of the national and state chapters of the Anti-Defamation League, an organization that works to prevent anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry, who asked people to sign an online pledge that read: “If Muslim-Americans will be forced to register their identities, then I will register as a Muslim in solidarity."

Joshua Cohen, director of ADL’s New Jersey chapter, said about Jews: "Once we were strangers in this country, and it is our responsibility to stand up for the other." 

He added: "I will be standing on line with the ADL to register as a Muslim, should something like that ever happen in this country."

The NAACP also has decried the proposed registry, calling it "a threat to the liberty of all Americans." Its president, Cornell William Brooks, said that "as a proud Christian and card-carrying member of the NAACP," he would also register.

Sues, of the Council on American-Islamic Relations of New Jersey, said one of its new volunteers is a lawyer, a born-again Christian who will help with an employment discrimination case. They also heard from an official with the New Jersey office of the Communications Workers of America, who told The Record that the organization, as a union, will work with faith communities to support human rights and oppose bigotry.

In a rally on the Statehouse steps a week ago, around 35 people from different faith groups and community groups called for inclusiveness and safety for all, including Muslims. Participants included the Rev. Seth Kaper-Dale, who leads the Reformed Church of Highland Park and is running for governor on the Green Party ticket. He said he would also register as a Muslim if a registry took place.

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