Muslim footbaths spark another
Indianapolis pastor warns trend is first step in Islamic goal of imposing Sharia law in U.S.
October 2, 2007
By Bob Unruh
airport officials have announced plans to add footbaths for Muslims who
wish to wash before their five-times-daily prayer rituals, and that's
just too much for one pastor, who has called for residents to organize
issue has been appearing in more and more airports and other public
facilities in recent weeks, where Muslim immigrants are a growing
segment of cab drivers, who spend hours waiting on arriving passengers
for their fares.
years ago, officials with Sky Harbor Airport in Phoenix boasted of a
new "customer service," providing footwashing facilities for Muslims.
cab drivers were asking for more washroom facilities as a group, and a
majority of them wanted some place to wash before they pray," Deborah
Ostreicher, public information officer, told the Arizona Republic.
"This is a way we thought we could reach out as a customer service."
facilities have been built at Kansas City International, although
airport officials repeatedly have insisted the washing facilities are
for anyone aided by the presence of seating and low faucets.
editorial writer called it "creeping dhimmitude," where America is
joining the "global community of nations dominated by Islam," and now
Rev. Jerry Hillenburg, pastor at Hope Baptist Church in Indianapolis,
says he's going to be working to halt such changes at the city's
He's announced a rally Saturday at 11 a.m. to oppose the tax-funded footwashing sinks for Muslims at the airport.
do you eat an elephant?" Hillenburg asked during an interview with WND.
"One bite at a time. And this is just the first bite of the elephant, a
step towards Islam's desired goal, which is to thrust the entire world
under one single Islamic caliphate under sharia law."
told the Indianapolis newspaper that such actions reflect a
"fraternization" with enemies during a time of war, and he's calling on
Mayor Bart Peterson to halt the installation of the facilities.
sermon in response to the situation was titled "Stop Caving in to
Islam," and Hillenberg said it's unreasonable to use such public
facilities for the support of a single religion.
officials, faced with the sudden publicity and demands from the public,
admitted their plans to build facilities on airport property to
accommodate the prayer needs of Muslims are not final. But they were
planned as part of restrooms in a new airport terminal that is due for
completion next year.
"We're really a long way from having this set in stone," said Airport Authority spokesman David Dawson.
told the newspaper that comments from members of the public will have
an effect on the final plans for the property, which is owned by the
Airport Authority, a public entity.
A. Siddiqui, executive director of the Muslim Alliance of Indiana, said
the real issue is that American Muslims face intolerance every day.
problem I have with him is that he associates Muslims with the enemy,"
Siddiqui said. "For him to demonize all of us is the problem."
told the mayor that putting sinks on public property that would
primarily serve Muslims could be unconstitutional. That move,
Hillenburg said, simply is an "appeasement" of Muslims.
the airport has an interfaith chapel, Hillenburg said he would be
surprised if the authority would allow the installation of a baptistry
or basins for holy water.
don't hate Muslims. I don't hate people who follow Islam," he said.
"But I am at odds with anyone who threatens America and its citizenry;
and I am at odds with anyone, period, who wants to destroy
ACLU has not opposed the installation of the religion-specific
facilities in other locations. When the University of Michigan
installed footbaths in campus restrooms, it concluded that the
university's reason was for "practical cleanliness and safety."
won't let us (Christians) have the Ten Commandments, Merry Christmas or
children praying at a school convocation," Hillenburg told WND. "We've
had the Establishment Clause shoved down our throats for the last 40
situation] boils down to the appeasement of Islam at the cost of
oppression to Christianity," he said. "We have lived with the Supreme
Court's separation of church and state for years. We've had Christmas
trees banned, Nativity scenes taken down, in the state General Assembly
in Indiana a federal judge ruled it is unconstitutional to have a
Richards, who works in the transportation industry at Sky Harbor in
Phoenix, said he's documented similar facilities that have been on the
airport property for several years already.
the airport's cab lot (C-lot) they not only have footbaths but also a
covered designated prayer area with 'misters,' benches, and prayer
rugs," he said. "If people other than Muslims go into the area, they
are 'swooped' on by Islamic followers as to the intent of any
told WND the facility essentially is a mosque on public property for
the benefit of Muslims. "It's their space. They mark it with their
The earlier report in the Arizona Republic said it might be the first such facility in the nation.
Malik Omar, who owns Metro Transportation, a limousine company on
Phoenix, said observers sometimes can see 30 or 40 people praying
together in open space. He said even more accommodations should be
added, including a permanent place to pray.
Spencer, who founded Jidah Watch, compared installing a footbath for a
Muslim to putting in a holy water font to accommodate Catholics.
only conceivable group that will use the footbath are Muslims for
prayer," he said. "It's a religious installation for a religious use."
earlier reported on the situation at Kansas City International Airport,
where officials completed the installation and then announced the
washing areas could be used for any number of purposes.
of us believe that had this request come from, say, a majority of
Catholic cab drivers who requested holy water founts or to have a Ten
Commandments plaque installed in airport public facilities, even at
their own expense, there would have been a severe outcry from the PC
(politically correct) bully pulpit about 'separation of church and
state' and in the name of 'religious tolerance,'" said Missy
Holthoefer, a longtime KCI user.
will the PC bureaucrats get a real clue from history and religious
studies that appeasement is the worst way to counter the growing threat
from Islamic radicals? To the PC crowd: 'Muslim appeasement' [equals]
'showing weakness and thus vulnerability,'" she said.
official at KCI even apparently tried intimidation in an effort to
eliminate discussion about the recently installed footbaths, after
repeated denials that they are intended for Muslims to perform their
"That's the way I perceived it," Kevin Peterson told WND in a telephone interview.
said he shares his name with a union steward for the Air Traffic
Controllers Union at Kansas City's airport, but he is not the same
individual. He was sent an e-mail from airport spokesman Joe McBride,
who assumed he was writing to the union steward. about the issue.
Indianapolis Star reports that the Indianapolis Airport is installing
Muslim foot-washing basins in an upcoming renovation," Peterson wrote.
"The paper says that Muslim footwashing basis are already installed at
"Are you planning to issue a denial as to the purpose of the KCI basins to the Indianapolis Star?" he asked.
assume you are the Kevin Peterson who is the union steward for the air
traffic controllers union," the e-mail, signed electronically with
McBride's name, said.
number one on the first e-mail suggests that your [sic] are in the
control tower near the cab facility. I read your previous e-mail on
this topic. Your stance is not in the best interest of the airport and
the federal government, your employer," the e-mail said.
Peterson, however, said McBride had called later to apologize for the tone of his note.
"My opinion is that the decision makers at KCI were hiding behind Mr. McBride," Peterson said.
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