ADC Michigan Demands Response to FBI Labelling of
Dearborn as “Ground Zero for Terrorism”
Dearborn, MI | www.adcmichigan.org | August 7, 2014 – The Michigan Office of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee Michigan Office (ADC-MI) expresses serious concerns over the revelation that the City of Dearborn, with the largest concentration of Arab-Americans in the country, is racially designated as the second largest hub of suspected terrorist threat in the country. Dearborn is second to New York City, which also has a high concentration of Arab-Americans. The Intercept published these revelations in an article titled, “Barack Obama’s Secret Terrorist-Tracking System, by the Numbers.”
In light of these revelations, ADC Michigan fears the growing hostility that will be directed at the Arab-American community. ADC Michigan Director Fatina Abdrabboh states, “It is no surprise that the government’s warantless targeting of the Arab-American community increases public hostility and even violence against its members. The government should be expected to work towards safeguarding Arab-American liberties, not encouraging their violation.”
Because there is no evidence as to why the city is high on the list, the only incriminating factor is the city’s large Arab-American population, which raises questions of systemic discrimination and racial profiling by government agencies and officials that are expected to uphold citizens’ civil liberties.
As an organization that is deeply invested in the community, we fear that these documents, coupled with consistent negative portrayals of Arab-Americans, and the Arab American Institute’s recent findings which indicate that “a significant number of Americans (42%) support the use of profiling by law enforcement against Arab-Americans and American-Muslims,” may increase hostility towards the Arab-American community from both citizens and government officials who may feel such behavior justified.
ADC Michigan has regularly expressed concern over warrantless surveillance targeting Arab-Americans, as well as the use of racial profiling in singling out and vilifying members of the community. ADC Michigan will continue to push for immediate reform and an end to the unlawful practices.
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