Washington, DC — On Thursday evening, soon-to-be New Jersey State Sen. Edward Durr responded to Muslim Advocates’ call that he apologize and disavow an anti-Muslim tweet. In his response, Durr said that he apologizes “if I said anything in the past that hurt anybody’s feelings” and that he supports “everybody’s right to worship in any manner they choose to.” This apology does not disavow or even acknowledge the harmful, false and dangerous anti-Muslim and anti-Islam messages in his tweet.
The following is a statement from Muslim Advocates Communications Director Eric Naing:
“While we appreciate Mr. Durr’s response, it falls short of a sincere apology. Mr. Durr very clearly said what he thinks of Islam and Muslims in his tweet. Saying that he apologizes ‘if I said anything in the past that hurt anybody’s feelings’ and that he supports ‘everybody’s right to worship in any manner they choose to’ fails to acknowledge the real harm of his tweet or disavow it. Reading between the lines of his response, Mr. Durr could still very well believe and support the disgusting, incendiary statements he made about Islam and Muslims while still generally supporting a person’s right to believe what they wish.
This kind of anti-Muslim rhetoric is dangerous. Muslims regularly face hate, violence and worse from people who say the same things that Mr. Durr tweeted. Anyone who says what Mr. Durr said about Muslims and Islam and fails to explicitly disavow it should not be serving in the New Jersey legislature.
We call on Mr. Durr to explicitly acknowledge that his anti-Muslim tweet was wrong and that he disavows his statement. If he fails again to do this, he is unfit to represent New Jersey’s Third District and must give up the office.”
Muslim Advocates is a national civil rights organization working in the courts, in the halls of power and in communities to halt bigotry in its tracks. We ensure that American Muslims have a seat at the table with expert representation so that all Americans may live free from hate and discrimination.