Muslim Supporters Protest Villa Park Councilwoman


By Frank Shyong

Villa Park: About 500 demonstrators from various groups marched and chanted slogans against or in support of Councilwoman Deborah Pauly in front of Villa Park City Hall on Tuesday evening.

The majority of demonstrators were Muslim supporters who organized in response to a speech by Pauly last month at a Yorba Linda rally. About 50 people showed up Tuesday night to support Pauly.

The two groups faced off on the walkway in front of City Hall before the council meeting shouting at one another through bullhorns and displaying signs with phrases such as, “I’m a Muslim not a terrorist,” and “Deborah Pauly is a patriot.”

The protesters also chanted at and over each other: “Deborah Pauly, I’m your neighbor. Why are you such a hater,” “No Sharia law,” and “Hey, hey, ho, ho, the racism’s got to go.” ...

Demonstrators said they’re angry that Pauly hasn’t apologized, and some demanded an official reprimand. But Hussam Ayloush, executive director of CAIR California, said the main purpose of the rally was to show Pauly that Muslims are supported by the community.

“It would be nice if she apologized for her unbefitting behavior ... but what’s more important is what happens after,” said Ayloush, referring to a general community reconciliation he hoped would occur.

The Villa Park City Council held a special meeting March 9 to address Pauly’s comments and issued a declaration saying that public comments by a council member do not represent the city. An earlier draft of the declaration named Pauly, but her name was omitted from the final draft. Pauly was asked to apologize but refused.

- Orange County Register



Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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