The American Civil Liberties Union of West Virginia (ACLU-WV) is proud of our close relationship with the Islamic Association of West Virginia (IAWV). Our city and our state are brighter, more loving, and more inclusive because of our Muslim neighbors.

A recent sermon by a Fairmont hate preacher that was brought to light by our friends at the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) contained numerous false and bigoted accusations. We condemn this kind of rhetoric in no uncertain terms.

Across America, we have seen a wave of anti-Muslim hatred in recent years that has resulted in vandalism, discrimination, and even violence. The kind of rhetoric spewed by people like John Polis may be constitutionally protected, but it only fans the flames of this violence.

Polis claims that Islam is at odds with American ideals, but it is he who is out of step with the principles of religious tolerance enshrined in our constitution.