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Snyder Says Dearborn's Calm Response to Qur'an Burnings a Model for Handling Difficult Issues

Three Qur'ans were burned outside a mosque that is the center of Dearborn's Shi'a Iraqi community.

Gov. Rick Snyder, who once lived in Dearborn, praised city and religious leaders for their calm response to Qur'an burnings and a rally by anti-Islam pastor from Florida.
Gov. Rick Snyder, who once lived in Dearborn, praised city and religious leaders for their calm response to Qur'an burnings and a rally by anti-Islam pastor from Florida.

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder on Monday praised Dearborn leaders for their calm response to an anti-Islam rally hosted by Qur’an burning pastor Terry Jones of Florida last weekend.

Snyder, speaking at the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn, said leaders’ response set a good example of  “how to deal with difficult issues in a constructive fashion,”the Detroit Free Press reports.

City leaders encouraged Dearborn residents to ignore Jones and his supporters. No counter protests were held, as they have been in the past.

Last week, three copies of the Qur’an were found burning outside the Karbalaa Islamic Education Center, but Jones disavowed any knowledge and said his grou, Stand Up America, wasn’t responsible, the Press and Guide reports.

The Qur’an burnings occurred just as afternoon prayers were about to begin  at the center of Dearborn’s Iraqi Shi’a community. Several people tried to put out the fires with their bare hands when they saw it was the Muslim holy book, the Press and Guide said.

Sheikh Husham Al-Husainy, the inman at the mosque, said the incident is being investigated by local police and the FBI.

During Monday’s talk, Snyder said he is dismayed that Qur’an burnings still occur.

“ … Those are terrible events,” he said “You would hope they would never happen. I’m very proud of the Dearborn community for how they’ve handled these issues, about being pro-active and talking about peace and ways to work well with people. This is a good role model for how communities can be good examples.”

Snyder had been invited to speak at the museum by Manal Saab, a Flint businesswoman and chairwoman of the museum’s  advisory board. Snyder, who once lived in Dearborn, toured the museum and then spoke to about 50 Arab-American leaders and Dearborn Mayor Jack O’Reilly.

He said the state values diversity and is committed to attracting skilled, highly educated immigrants, including political refugees, who he said will be job creators.
Lee Jacobsen June 16, 2014 at 11:21 PM
Qur'an's are special to some, just as the American Flag is to others. Bibles, all 100 plus versions , are also special. However, they are all man made, and what can be made, can be destroyed. They can also be recreated, so not exactly a tragedy one way or another when they meet their useful end.
Joseph Borrajo June 17, 2014 at 08:25 AM
Conspicuously absent- Terry Jone's following/supporters in Dearborn. Hateful bigots one and all. P3
Tamley Vega June 17, 2014 at 11:12 AM
Our city is filled with people that love it and love this country. My grandfather was one of the very first Filipinos in the city after earning his law degree and because we were not taught hate. My bio father is Hispanic and he never taught us things to watch for that meant we were being disrespected racially, we were told by both..you are Americans and don't go down any other path but to become a great ones. We have Islamic families here that are doing the same thing, being tolerant of ignorance and teaching their children the same. We have a distinct advantage here to build the future of Dearborn, we can be an example of successful integration of the Arabic and the newest and largest growing community of Hispanic families...all in the shadow of the of the infamy of once being a "sundown town".

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