January 15, 2015 7:00 pm -

[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.

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D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

47 responses to Duke University Cancels Plans For Muslim Call To Prayer

  1. tiredoftea January 15th, 2015 at 7:49 pm

    “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.”, who has never disavowed the christian terrorists, also known as “right to life” groups who maim and murder doctors while terrorizing women who need health care.

    BTW, don’t we still have a First Amendment there? Here? Anywhere? Or, are we now a certifiably “Christian” nation?

    • Wayout January 15th, 2015 at 7:58 pm

      But we can’t have anything Christian in a university now, surely you know that? No Bibles, no crosses of crucifix’s, no Christmas celebrations, but oh boy if it’s anything to do with the Muslim faith it’s just fine and dandy.

      • Carla Akins January 15th, 2015 at 8:06 pm

        You also cannot display Muslim celebratory symbols. You can pray to whomever you choose, you can start whatever student groups for any religion you wish – you cannot spend public tax dollars pushing a particular religion, it’s the first amendment. It’s simple, and if you think the Christain religions are not fully represented on American campuses you would be dead wrong. It is alive and well at all 12 colleges I visit 2 years ago – to the extent I had to question whether they were violating Title IX conditions.

      • arc99 January 15th, 2015 at 8:14 pm

        It is times like this and people like you who remind me how fortunate we are to have the first amendment and article 6 of the US Constitution.

        you people are so completely detached from reality, it would truly be frightening if not downright life-threatening to some of us if you right wingers had the authority to define what is a religion and what is not.

        and more importantly who is facing real persecution and who is not. fascinating how right wingers are all so holier than thou religious and supporters of the Constitution except when it is not your religion and it is the Constitutional rights of people you dislike.

      • tiredoftea January 15th, 2015 at 9:03 pm

        Ohhh, poor, oppressed majority! How sad for you to be restricted in your proselytizing on campus, in classrooms and wherever else you felt you were entitiled to.There are christian organizations on virtually all campuses that you are conveniently forgetting about.

        • Spirit of America January 15th, 2015 at 10:12 pm

          And there is still a muslim group and still using the chapel for services.
          So far as I can find, Duke has never used the tower to broadcast any other faith’s prayer.

          • tiredoftea January 15th, 2015 at 10:31 pm

            Gee, does any other faith broadcast their prayers?

          • Spirit of America January 16th, 2015 at 12:45 am

            They do not offer it’s use for the shofur.

          • rg9rts January 16th, 2015 at 8:11 am

            Yes the Christians on Sunday with their bell ringing…I’m sure it’s a sound non believers can do without.

      • tracey marie January 15th, 2015 at 9:21 pm

        they are a private university, they may do what they wish….just like that phony xtian unaccredited school of the phony xtian

      • repsac3 January 15th, 2015 at 10:25 pm

        In fact Duke University has been calling Christans to their Sunday services by ringing the bells in that same belltower for quite some time.
        One assumes that that will be in no way affected by this cowardly reversal…though perhaps it should be… (In the name of equality and fairness, y’understand… Personally, I’m all for being more inclusive and welcoming to the various faiths of we Americans…but some folks just can’t live and let live…)

      • StoneyCurtisll January 16th, 2015 at 8:35 am

        Ya ignorant twit..
        Duke is a private institution..
        No crosses?..

  2. tracey marie January 15th, 2015 at 9:19 pm

    Hate won the day, more ugly phony xtian calls of phony outrage and bigotry

    • rg9rts January 16th, 2015 at 8:10 am

      The devil made them do it

  3. tracey marie January 15th, 2015 at 9:22 pm

    you did notice it was the church on campus of the private school that has services for islam and christianity

    • rg9rts January 16th, 2015 at 8:12 am

      They’ll be banned by the true believers club

  4. repsac3 January 15th, 2015 at 10:30 pm

    Exactly what is it you think the bells in that chapel belltower are for, if not to announce the start of Sunday (Christian) services… (…as they have at Duke for many years.)

    • uzza January 15th, 2015 at 11:04 pm

      Their purpose is to disturb the peace, annoy the neighbors and insult everybody who doesn’t belong to their particular branch of Abram’s death cult.

      Maybe also to remind them of the good old days when the bells meant report to church or get burned at the stake.

    • greenfloyd January 16th, 2015 at 1:42 am

      The bell is rung to signify the time, to call people to worship, for special events such as weddings and funerals, or historically to sound a civil defense or fire alarm.

      Belltower Wiki

      To most urban Americans it’s a quaint relic. I imagine modern Muslims get their Call on a mobile.

      • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 1:59 am

        right, right, right, and right.

  5. greenfloyd January 15th, 2015 at 11:43 pm


    Allahu Akbar
    God is Great
    (said four times)

    Ashhadu an la ilaha illa Allah
    I bear witness that there is no god except the One God.
    (said two times)

    Ashadu anna Muhammadan Rasool Allah
    I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of God.
    (said two times)

    Perhaps it might be more accepted by Americans if it were rendered in English. And instead of a recorded version blaring and forcing it self on everyone, it were sung from the church steps.

    A reasonable compromise? … Discus 🙂

    • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 12:55 am

      i get where you’re coming from. how about though, no prayers at all? no one will ever be happy. and the fact that those are what the words mean, says everyone should be on the same page. but, well, you know.

      • greenfloyd January 16th, 2015 at 1:19 am

        I don’t have a problem with “prayers.” Although the amplified public call to Muslim services can be somewhat overpowering. I’m sure some accomodation can be reached by reasonable people.

        • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 1:38 am

          overpowering? hum. well, i would think that would mean that any call to prayer over the system would be, right? what other religions should have a call? now, where are you going to find “reasonable people?”

          • greenfloyd January 16th, 2015 at 1:44 am

            You’d think a university would be full of them… 🙂

          • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 1:58 am

            and yet, we’re having this conversation.

          • greenfloyd January 16th, 2015 at 2:19 am

            We’re obviously very reasonable people… winning hearts and minds. 🙂

          • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 2:22 am

            we can only try.

          • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 1:46 am

            i am one of those reasonable persons however. i could really care less. now, how about some good baptist gospel? do you know the kind? when i was a little girl attending our baptist church, i loved it. i loved the excitement of the preacher and the choir. but, i got my kicks out of the fainters. hey, i was just a kid. but, good old baptist (black) church gospel. oh, yeah.

          • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 1:49 am

            also, when i was a little girl, i went to catholic church. my mother’s side was baptist, my father’s side was catholic. now, catholic church bored me to tears. me, my sisters and a couple of other friends would go alone. my grandmother would give us money as offering. well, not a good idea when we had to pass the corner store. needless to say, we had the audacity to sit in the front of the church, chewing on our church money gum. of course the father would approach us with a napkin. they never got their money and grandma never knew about the candy and gum.

          • greenfloyd January 16th, 2015 at 2:03 am

            Religion didn’t play a major role in my youth, although I did take-up a spiritual quest in my 20s. Today I’m a devote apathetic, but recognize how important it is to so many.

          • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 2:18 am

            devote apathetic?

          • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 2:29 am

            also, i’m a spiritual person. i also believe in GOD. but, man i don’t understand the “gods” (lower caps on purpose) they pray to, that believe he or she would approve of the violence and hate, no matter who you are, or your chosen religion, that its ok. i don’t get it. if you’ve never done anything to harm me personally, i don’t hate you. i don’t hate your religion. i just can’t stand who you are as a person. PERIOD.

          • greenfloyd January 16th, 2015 at 3:34 am

            I call it Extremism, period. I’m not so concerned rather it’s political or religious by anyone’s opinion. I consider it a form of collective mental illness that’s a self-fulfilling prophecy of doom and where the ends always justify the means. There’s no future in that!

            There is a future in a country that frees “God” from the mundane task of running the state and allows the humanity it created, to give it a go.

          • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 3:47 am

            nicely said.

          • greenfloyd January 16th, 2015 at 2:16 am

            “Overpowering,” is merely my opinion, I’m sure it’s music to believers. It’s also my opinion free speech works both ways, the speaker to speak, and all others the right to ignore it. And at a certain decibel level it could be considered a public nuisance in most American cities.

          • whatthe46 January 16th, 2015 at 2:22 am

            oh no, i agree.

        • Wayout January 16th, 2015 at 6:50 am

          The amplified call to prayer is not just a call, it is a declaration of the Islamic faith, sort of like saying the Nicene creed. Why should non-believers be subject to this?

          • rg9rts January 16th, 2015 at 8:07 am

            Because of the abuse brought on by born again rightwing religious nuts…Like the idiot woman in Tennessee that sees pentagrams in the tail lights on school buses.

          • tracey marie January 16th, 2015 at 8:36 pm

            kinda like the christians and there church bells

          • greenfloyd January 16th, 2015 at 9:51 pm

            That’s a good question, although I don’t think it needs to be qualified as to who is subject to what. In a public space I believe we should try for accommodation of expression, be it political, religious, artistic or whatever. However, in public I think that expression should also be subject to regulation as to time, place and manner. In this case I believe that’s the main bone of contention. And hopefully where reasonable people will eventually prevail.

            So why “should” anybody be “subject” to public expression? I chalk it up to the price we pay for a basic freedom that we can not do without. We also enjoy the freedom to ignore the whole thing and be on our way.

        • rg9rts January 16th, 2015 at 8:09 am

          Why show a pic of the Hadj?? A once in a lifetime journey for the faithful

          • greenfloyd January 16th, 2015 at 8:45 pm

            I looked at several videos featuring the “call” and felt this would be the most representative…

          • rg9rts January 17th, 2015 at 1:55 am

            How about a minaret???

          • greenfloyd January 17th, 2015 at 2:12 am

            What about a minaret?

          • rg9rts January 17th, 2015 at 2:28 am

            That is where the call to prayer is given from…now enhanced by speakers

  6. rg9rts January 16th, 2015 at 8:05 am

    The faithful know when to pray