Executive Director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, Nihad Awad earned Ben Carson some unexpected support, after the director called for a press conference to “ask Mr. Ben Carson to withdraw from the Presidential Race.”
Addressing Carson as “mister” rather than “doctor” ignited right-wing involvement. The CAIR involves itself with Islamic controversies, similar to the Jewish community and the Anti-Defamation League. However, many conservatives view the council as an organization that may be involved in the laundering of funds to pay for jihadist activities, The Washington Post reports.
Frank Gaffney, founder of the Center for Security Policy told progressive radio host Alan Colmes, “We are confronting a problem called Sharia that is the authoritative version of Islam, not practiced by a lot of Muslims, but those who do have an obligation to force it on the rest of us,”
In an interview, Carson clarified that he was talking about Sharia law specifically, rather than Islam as a whole. He told The Hill’s John Easley, “Obviously if a Muslim was running for president, there would be a lot more education about Sharia, about taqiyya,” Taqiyya is the Islamic term for hiding one’s religion if it poses a threat.
Seven Republican governed states have banned any attempt at Sharia Law or Sharia courts, in the event that any Muslim officials should attempt to integrate them into state law.
Carson blames the criticisms of his comments on political correctness. Bill O’ Reilly said on his Fox News program, “Dr. Carson believing that Islamic tenets don’t line up Judeo-Christian philosophy on which the country was founded? And he is not allowed to say that? It’s his opinion. Well here’s a bulletin: unlike many Muslim countries, we have free speech in America. And Carson’s opinion shouldn’t disqualify him from anything but individual votes if that be the case. All of this PC fog has shrouded important issues.”