In a ruling Friday, U.S. District Court Judge Rebecca Pallmeyer says she expects the DuPage County Board to approve a building request from the Irshad Islamic Indoctrination Center.
FOX News The board denied a conditional-use permit for the facility in 2010, after nearly two years of debate. Board members said they were concerned about the center operating in a residential neighborhood.
Officials from Irshad filed a federal lawsuit, arguing the board violated their Constitutional right to the free practice of religion. Pallmeyer concludes there was no direct evidence of deliberate discrimination. But she says there’s no evidence Irshad would have any more impact than other religious institutions already operating in residential areas.
Rebecca R. Pallmeyer is an Article III Federal Judge for the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. She joined the Court in 1998 after being nominated by President Bill Clinton.
CAIR-Chicago The Irshad Learning Center (ILC) applied for a zoning permit to use a former school in unincorporated DuPage County as a mosque and Islamic school. The DuPage County Board denied them the permit in January, 2010, without explanation. CAIR-Chicago filed a complaint against members of the Board on behalf of the ILC last April.
The ILC, which owns the vacant building, felt that an Islamophobic smear campaign against the congregation influenced the Board’s decision. Anti-Muslim protests were taking place outside the County Board meeting, and false accusations against the ILC were made by representatives of the anti-Muslim group Act! For America during the meeting where the decision was made. ILC members, who are predominantly of Iranian decent, believe unfounded rumors regarding the ILC’s funding created a basis for denying them a permit.
All zoning requirements were met by the ILC and no reasons were given by the County Board for the rejection. The suit was filed under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act of 2000, the First Amendment to the Constitution – affording the free exercise of religion, speech and assembly- and the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause. State law bases include the Illinois Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
“We are happy to receive Judge Pallmeyer’s well-reasoned decision allowing the ILC to proceed in its case against the County. We will continue to pursue the ILC’s right to use the facility they own to accommodate the needs of the community,” said CAIR-Chicago Staff Attorney, Kevin Vodak. “The ILC met all of the requirements pursuant to the County’s zoning ordinance. Judge Pallmeyer’s decision acknowledges that the ILC presents legitimate arguments that its rights were violated.”
The Irshad Learning Center is one example of many Muslim religious institutions across the country that met resistance in 2010. In fact, it’s one of three just in unincorporated DuPage County. Even more disturbingly, DuPage officials recently proposed amendments to the Zoning Ordinance that would ban any new religious institutions in residential areas, citing an “oversaturation of religious institutions” in the area.
DuPage County apparently is a new MECCA for Muslim infiltration