Diana Eck Comments on AAR Lawsuit Supporting Tariq Ramadan

February 9, 2006

Source: The Harvard Crimson


On February 9, 2006 The Harvard Crimson reported, "A prominent Harvard religion professor and Lowell House master, Diana L. Eck, is leading the American Academy of Religion (AAR) as it challenges the Department of Homeland Security and the State Department over the visa revocation of high-profile Muslim scholar Tariq Ramadan.

The academy is one of the plaintiffs in a lawsuit alleging that Ramadan, the grandson of the founder of the Egyptian opposition group Muslim Brotherhood, has been unfairly banned from visiting the country on the basis of a Patriot Act statute meant to deny entry to those who endorse terrorism.

'The government is using this law to censor and manipulate political debate,' said Eck, the Wertham professor of law and psychiatry in society.

Eck said that she was shocked when she learned that Ramadan, a Swiss citizen and currently a visiting professor at Oxford University, had been denied entry to the United States.

'He is one of the foremost thinkers and interpreters of Islam and the West,' Eck said, acknowledging his reputation as an advocate of Muslim integration into Western society.

'These are exactly the sorts of Muslim voices that we want to nurture,' she added."