One Muslim parent's complaint that his children were given fliers by their public school teachers promoting an upcoming Easter egg hunt has sparked a controversy – and a show of interfaith solidarity.
Majed Moughni was upset after his son and daughter, both elementary school students of Dearborn Public Schools in Dearborn, Mich., brought home invitations to an "Eggstravaganza" at a local church.
Dearborn is home to about 40,000 Arab Americans, according to the 2000 Census,
the highest proportion of Arab Americans in any U.S. city.
Moughni, an attorney, complained to the Detroit Free Press
in a story published April 4 that the distribution of the fliers represented a violation of the constitutional separation of church and state.
That sparked a media controversy, with conservative outlets like American Thinker
decrying the Muslim parents who were upset about the invitations for the Easter egg hunt – a controversy fueled by the belief there were multiple parents who complained. The Free Press story said that "Moughni and others are worried that churches are trying to convert their youth through Dearborn Schools," but Moughni was the only parent quoted in the story.
On April 6, local Muslim and Christian leaders gathered at the steps of Cherry Hill Presbyterian Church in Dearborn, the church hosting the April 12 "Eggstravaganza," to show their solidarity between local Muslims and Christians and their opposition to Moughni's complaint, according to The Arab American News
The debate continued in national media Monday morning. Fox News' Elizabeth Hasselbeck interviewed Dr. Zuhdi Jasser,
founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, to discuss the situation. Jasser said Moughni's complaint represented an Islamic "cultural jihad" against American principals.
"This is just the summit of hypocrisy," he said. "The Constitution protects the freedom of expression, freedom of religion – freedom of religion, not freedom from religion."
Neither Hasselbeck nor Jasser mentioned Sunday's community gathering.
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