July 4 – Independence Day for Humanity – DC Rally for Human Rights and to Challenge ISNA DC Convention

By R.E.A.L. Organization • on June 28, 2009

On the morning of July 4, members of Responsible for Equality And Liberty (R.E.A.L.) will be demonstrating in support of our inalienable human rights of equality and liberty across the street from the Washington DC Convention Center where the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) will be holding its 46th annual convention.

The ISNA convention will take place at DC Convention Center located at 801 Mount Vernon Place NW, Washington, DC 20001.  R.E.A.L.’s rally will be located at Mt. Vernon Square across the street from the DC  Convention Center, near where the Historical Society of Washington DC (now closed) once operated. We plan to protest in the morning.  Important: see more rally details in the “Logistics” description below (see also “street closures”).

While ISNA claims that the theme of its convention is “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness,” ISNA will be ignoring the fundamental human right of equality at its convention, in trying to frame human rights based on Islamic supremacist Sharia and by having speakers that have promoted Islamic supremacist institutions give the appearance that they are in support of liberty.

Islamic supremacist organizations and nations have repeatedly rejected the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, demanding that human rights only exist as defined by Islamic supremacist Sharia.  Such organizations created their own “Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam,” which rejects the concept of an inalienable human right of equality, as they insist that all “human rights” are dependent on Islamic supremacism.

R.E.A.L. believes that our universal human rights of equality AND liberty are inalienable – no group, no supremacist or totalitarian ideology has the right to take away such universal human rights.  Supremacist ideologies are inherently opposed to the very idea of human equality.

R.E.A.L. believes that, without equality, we have NO liberty, we have NO opportunities to pursue happiness, and as shown in the recent film “The Stoning of Soraya M.”, in many cases without equality, we DON’T EVEN have life.

We hold these truths to be self-evident – that ALL men and women are created equal – and this equality of people of all genders, races, ethnicity, and religions is fundamental to our universal human rights.

Like other anti-freedom ideologies, Islamic supremacism rejects the universal human right of human equality for women, for non-Muslims, and even for Muslims of different sects.  This supremacism is seen every day around the world, and along with other supremacist ideologies, we at Responsible for Equality And Liberty (R.E.A.L.), seek to defy such supremacism with our commitment to universal human rights, including the truth that we hold self-evident of human equality.

On July 4, in Washington DC, the ISNA organization will be holding a conference discussion at 10 AM on “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness in the Maqasid al-Shari’ah (Goals of the Shari’ah).”  While Islamic supremacists around the world are using Sharia to justify murdering women, homosexuals, non-Muslims, and even different Muslim sects, we feel that it is essential to speak out publicly in our support of equality as a fundamental human right that all people deserve, regardless of what ISNA states about Sharia.

Also on July 4, in Washington DC, the ISNA organization will be holding a conference discussion on “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness,” featuring speakers including Siraj Wahhaj, Hamza Yusef, Zaid Shakir, and Ingrid Mattson.

But what we won’t hear from these ISNA speakers is their views on Islamic supremacism when it comes to “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness”:

– Siraj Wahhaj was a character witness for convicted 1993 World Trade Center terrorist “blind sheik” Omar Rahman, has called for replacing the American government with a caliphate.  According to Siraj Wahhaj, “if only Muslims were clever politically, they could take over the United States and replace its constitutional govt. with a caliphate. If we were united and strong, he said, we would elect our own emir and give allegiance to him. Take my word if 8 million Muslims unite in America, the country will come to us.”

Hamza Yusef (also spelled Hamza Yousuf or Hamza Yousef) has described Judaism as a “most racist religion,” and who promotes Jihad stating that Jihad is the duty and responsibility of all Muslims, further stating that “Jihad is actually considered a Rahma (mercy) in Islam.”  Yusef’s idea of “compromise” is that “There are times when you have to live like a sheep in order to live in the future like a lion.”

– Zaid Shakir has stated “Every Muslim who is honest would say, I would like to see America become a Muslim country”

ISNA’s Ingrid Mattson has defended the idea of an Islamic supremacist caliphate, and has portrayed Christians as a threat to Jews.  On the idea of the Islamic supremacist caliphate, she has stated that “the overthrowing of the caliphate… was a plan of European powers for many years. This deprived the Muslim world of a stable and centralized authority, and much of the chaos that we’re living in today is the result of that.”  Ingrid Mattson also claims that “Muslim women have the same legal rights as Muslim men,” when we see daily how women are treated as second-class human beings by Islamic supremacists who seek the same “caliphate” that Ingrid Mattson defends.

On July 3, the ISNA conference will also have Ihsan Bagby speak on “compelling history of Islam in the Americas and highlight the extraordinary contributions of Muslims to the American experience.”   But what has ISNA speaker Ihsan Bagby said about America?  According to Ihsan Bagby, “we [Muslims] can never be full citizens of this country… because there is no way we can be fully committed to the institutions and ideologies of this country.”

Are these speakers the idea of ISNA’s commitment to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”?

So on July 4, in Washington DC, Responsible for Equality And Liberty (R.E.A.L.) will continue to speak out in support of our inalienable human rights of equality and liberty in defiance of those who seek to promote supremacism and totalitarianism.

On July 4, we will call for a new “Independence Day,” one where people oppressed around the world can get freed from supremacist and totalitarian ideologies.   We call for a new “Independence Day” where all people can exercise their inalienable human rights of equality and liberty, no matter where they live in our shared Earth, as our universal human rights extend to every point on Earth and to all peoples of every gender, race, religion, and nationality.

Therefore, we call for Independence for those people oppressed by Islamic supremacism around the world, so that they might find Independence in their universal human rights, including the women, homosexuals, non-Muslims, and other Muslims who are oppressed by Islamic supremacists around the world.

To that end, we seek to introduce a new symbol of freedom that extends our expression of freedom beyond America’s patriotic red, white, and blue – to reach out to the rest of our fellow human beings suffering from oppression on Earth.

us-flag-250px

As we Declare Independence for those who don’t have the voice to speak for themselves, for those who live in oppression around the world, we call for a new symbol of Independence based on all of our universal rights, including EQUALITY, based on our Orange Ribbon of universal human rights.

On July 4, we ask that you join us in solidarity of our inalienable and universal human rights by wearing or displaying an orange ribbon along with your traditional red, white, and blue, as a measure of outreach to people around the world that we will continue to speak for those who continue to be oppressed.

For the sake of those who are oppressed, for the sake of those who don’t have freedom, for those whose lives are lived in terror, for those whose voice is silenced, let us remember this July 4 for them as well.

Let us be their voice to help them declare their own Independence Day.


Orange Ribbon for Universal Human Rights - Responsible for Equality And Liberty (R.E.A.L.)

Orange Ribbon for Universal Human Rights - Responsible for Equality And Liberty (R.E.A.L.)


July 4 Washington DC Protest Rally Logistics:

Date: Saturday, July 4
Time: 9-11 AM
– our assembly plan submitted to the DC Police is for 9 AM to 1 PM, so we can extend this if enough people want to do that

Contact: Jeffrey Imm, Responsible for Equality And Liberty (R.E.A.L.)
Contact Email: realpublic@earthlink.net

Location: Washington DC, Mt. Vernon Square Area, across the street from the DC Convention Center near the intersection of Mt. Vernon Place, 9th street, and Massachusetts Avenue
– appx address is 858 Mt. Vernon Place NW, Washington DC 20001
– this will be near where the Historical Society of Washington DC (HSW) once operated
Map of DC Convention Center, nearby streets, and subway stops

– see also Street Closures

Map of DC Convention Ctr Area - Rally to be in Mt. Vernon Square facing the end of the Convention Center

Map of DC Convention Ctr Area - Rally to be in Mt. Vernon Square facing the end of the Convention Center

Directions:

Subway Directions:
2 blocks south of the Mount Vernon Sq/7th St-Convention Center Metro Station (yellow and green lines) and 2 blocks north of the Gallery Pl-Chinatown Metro station (red, yellow, and green lines).

Use Metro’s RideGuide for specific directions using Metrorail or Metrobuses.

Directions to DC Convention Center

Important Note – our rally will be in Mount Vernon Square facing towards one end of the DC Convention Center.  If you are going by using landmark of the now-closed Historical Society of Washington DC (HSW) in the center of Mount Vernon Square — note that we will be on the BACK side of the HSW building in the center Mt. Vernon Square that faces towards the Washington DC Convention Center, not towards the front side of the HSW building that faces K Street.


Driving Directions:

* From the South–Woodbridge, Richmond, North Carolina– Northbound on I-95
* From the Northwest (Frederick, Gaithersburg, Rockville, Bethesda)
* From the Northeast (New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore)
* From the East (Annapolis, Bowie)
* From the West (Falls Church, Fairfax, and beyond)
* From the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport

From the South (Woodbridge, Richmond, North Carolina):
o Travel North on I-95 to I-395 Northbound
o Follow I-395, across the 14th Street Bridge into Washington, DC, staying in the right lanes.
o Take the 12th Street Exit.
o Turn right onto New York Avenue, NW.
o New York Avenue becomes K Street NW at 9th Street
o Turn left on 7th Street and proceed 10 blocks to Mount Vernon Place.
o Turn left on Mount Vernon Place.
o The HSW is located on the left at 801 K Street, NW – between 7th and 9th Streets.

From the Northwest (Frederick, Gaithersburg, Rockville, Bethesda):
o Travel South on I-270 to I-495 Southbound, towards Washington/Northern Virginia. (I-495 is the Outer Loop of the Capital Beltway.)
o Continue on I-495, crossing the American Legion Bridge, into Virginia.
o Take Exit 43, the George Washington Memorial Parkway (GW Parkway), Southbound. This is a right exit just after the American Legion Bridge.
o Take the 12th Street Exit
o Proceed north on 12th Street an turn right in New York Avenue.
o New York Avenue becomes K Street NW at 9th Street
o Turn left on 7th Street.
o Turn right on Mount Vernon Place.
o The HSW is located on the right at 801 K Street, NW – between 7th and 9th Streets

From the Northeast (New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore):
o Travel South on I-95.
o At the split for I-95/I-495, follow the signs for Washington/Northern Virginia, staying in the left lanes to I-95 South/495 East. (I-95 South/495 East is the Inner Loop of the Capital Beltway).
o Take Exit 22B, the Baltimore-Washington Parkway (BW Parkway), Southbound towards Washington, DC.
o Follow the B-W Parkway to US Route 50/New York Avenue, NE Westbound into Washington, DC.
o US Route 50 becomes New York Avenue.
o New York Avenue becomes Mount Vernon Place at 7th Street, NW.
o The HSW is located on the left at 801 K Street, NW – between 7th and 9th Streets.

From the East (Annapolis, Bowie):
o Travel West on US Route 50 into Washington, DC. US Route 50 becomes New York Avenue.
o New York Avenue becomes Mount Vernon Place at 7th Street, NW
o The HSW is located on the left at 801 K Street, NW – between 7th and 9th Streets

From the West (Falls Church, Fairfax, and beyond):
o Travel East on I-66 towards Washington, DC.
o Take I-66 over the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge, following the signs for US Route 50 Eastbound/Constitution Avenue, NW.
o Take the US 50/Constitution Avenue Exit.
o Proceed on Constitution Avenue to 7th Street, NW..
o Turn left on 7th Street, NW.
o Proceed 9 blocks on 7th Street to Mount Vernon Place.
o Turn left on Mount Vernon Place.
o The HSW is located on the left at 801 K Street, NW – between 7th and 9th Streets.

From the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport:
o Take the George Washington Parkway North to I-395 and Washington D.C.
o Follow I-395 North across the 14th Street bridge.
o Stay in the right lanes for the 12th Street Exit.
o Take the 12th Street Exit and proceed North on 12th Street and turn right onto New York Avenue.
o New York Avenue becomes K Street NW at 9th Street
o Turn left on 7th Street and proceed 1 block to Mount Vernon Place.
o Turn left on Mount Vernon Place.
o The HSW is located on the left at 801 K Street, NW – between 7th and 9th Streets.

Parking:

There is no on-site parking at the Historical Society.

Street Parking: limited street parking is available on 7th Street, K Street, and throughout the neighborhood. Spaces are metered with a two hour maximum. Please note that there are no spaces specifically reserved for handicap parking on the block immediately surrounding the HSW.

Garages and Parking Lots: Several garages and parking lots are located within a 2 block walk of the HSW. Parking fees range from $8-$20, depending on the time of day and length of time parked. Located across the street from the HSW, the Renaissance Hotel has a parking garage at 999 Ninth Street, NW.