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Armed bigots again terrorize Texas Muslims — this time met by an anti-hate movement

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Armed protesters again created chaos in Texas on Saturday by hunkering outside a mosque in Richardson that they falsely accused of terrorism.

The protesters, from volunteer group “Bureau of American Islamic Relations” (BAIR) brought firearms to the Islamic Association of North Texas, claiming the religious organization “has a documented history of funding terrorism” — a claim the Dallas Morning News could find no evidence for.

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The group’s leader, David Wright, told the News the guns were to protect the group against Islamic extremists. But when pressed about the armed, mask-wearing men stalking people at their place of worship, he said he is “not a monster.”

“I do not like the fact that it may scare children or that it may scare women,” Wright told the News. “I do not like that at all. I’m not a monster.”

The group’s action was met counter-protesters in Dallas demonstrating against bigotry and Islamophobia — one dressed as a bear to spoof the armed group’s acronym, BAIR. Dallas News journalist Avi Selk reported 500 had signed on to come, but the location had to be moved last minute. Still, over 200 attended.

“We reject the discrimination against our Muslim brothers and sisters, we reject racial profiling by anyone, and we stand together and say we are better united,” said Pastor Eric Folkerth of Northaven United Methodist Church.

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Last month, armed BAIR protesters generated outrage by showing up carrying firearms at a mosque in Irving. The mosque was set to be the site for the anti-bigotry demonstration, but mosque leaders asked for privacy as they met with community leaders from various faiths instead.

While mosque leaders at the Islamic Center of Irving had warned worshippers not to engage them, Wright and members of the Richardson mosque debated each other, according to the News.

“Nobody was listening to me two or three weeks ago — not one person,” Wright said, according to the News. “Now look, now look, now look how many people are now listening to me.”

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The two argued over Wright’s bogus terrorism claims and Syrian refugees.

A week after the Irving demonstration, about 200 people rallied in support of their Muslim community members, in what the News calls one of the largest spontaneous demonstrations in the suburb’s history.

“It just made me so angry to see Americans who call themselves brave patriots threatening women and children,” one protester had said.

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While Irving was thrust into the center of the national discussion over Islamophobia after a schoolboy who made a clock was arrested and accused of making a “hoax bomb,” organizers of Saturday’s counter-demonstration said they’re hoping this will snowball into a larger movement against bigotry.

“The hate isn’t going to stop so we shouldn’t let the rain stop us,” Alia Salem, leader of the local chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, told the crowd, and talked about a “snowball of a movement that’s going to take over [Dallas-Forth Worth.”


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Pennsylvania Republican senator arrested and charged with possession of child pornography

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According to a release from Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, Republican state Sen. Michael Folmer has been arrested and charged with possession of child pornography.

The release said that the investigation began as the result of a CyberTip about Tumblr discovering that a user had uploaded child pornography onto their site. It ultimately led to the home of Folmer in Lebanon, PA. A search warrant yielded images on Folmer's phone.

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Netanyahu refuses to concede after he falls short — blames media instead

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Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, refused to concede after being down in the election night polls. Like the last election, Netanyahu is claiming his own personal victory and blaming the media for all of his woes.

Senior Diplomatic correspondent Barak Ravid, at Channel 13 News in Tel-Aviv, was live-tweeting the election results late Tuesday night.

https://twitter.com/barakravid/status/1174116674225758209?s=21

"Netanyahu says Israel needs a Zionist government that is committed for Israel as a Jewish state. No government can be based on support from Arab parties," Ravid said.

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Mitch McConnell crony running for Kentucky AG is ineligible for office: lawsuit

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On Tuesday, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported that a new lawsuit seeks to remove Daniel Cameron from the ballot as the Kentucky GOP's nominee for state attorney general.

According to the lawsuit, filed by retired union worker and "concerned citizen" Joseph Leon Jackson Sr. in Jefferson Circuit Court, Cameron does not meet the office requirement of having practiced law for eight years — because although he was admitted by the Kentucky Bar Association in 2011, he spent two of the following years clerking for U.S. District Judge Gregory Van Tatenhove.

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