Duke University Cancels Plans For Muslim Call To Prayer
[su_right_ad]Duke University has canceled plans to have Muslim prayer broadcast from its chapel’s belltower Friday.
The university announced its plans to facilitate a call to prayer on Thursday, but Duke officials acknowledged the decision resulted in unintended backlash.
“Duke remains committed to fostering an inclusive, tolerant and welcoming campus for all of its students,” said Michael Schoenfeld, vice president for public affairs and government relations. “However, it was clear that what was conceived as an effort to unify was not having the intended effect.”
[su_thin_right_skyscraper_ad]The initial plan was to broadcast a weekly call to prayer from the chapel’s bell tower starting Jan. 16. The prayer service would then take place in the chapel basement.
The university said it will welcome members of the Muslim community to gather on the quadrangle outside the chapel, before moving to its regular location in the chapel basement.
The chant was intended to announce the start of the Duke Muslim Student Association’s prayer service, which the Muslim chaplain at Duke said “brings Muslims back to their purpose in life.” However after the school announced the weekly broadcast, the university’s Facebook page was flooded with angry comments.
One commenter said they had “totally lost respect for Duke University.”
Another said that the university is a “… center for political correctness,” and that it’s “just plain bizarre that [they are] going to do an Islamic call to prayer.”
The plan also drew the ire of evangelist Franklin Graham, who urged Duke alumni to withhold support because of violence against Christians that he attributed to Muslims.