The Barrow County Sheriff’s Office is hosting a course on “Islam in America,” but its description has raised concern from a Muslim civil rights and advocacy group.
The March 8 training course will taught by former Woodstock Police Department Chief David Bores and is open to law enforcement and the faith community.
The curriculum includes “ Muslim Brotherhood, Ideology, Challenges to LE and our Constitution.”
“This course is to learn the jihadist enemy,” according to a description of the course. “How they define themselves by documents and social media, the historical basis to justify their actions, and their inspirations. This course also covers the Grand Jihad to eliminate America by terrorist acts and subversive acts under the Muslim Brotherhood.”
Bores could not be reached for comment.
Edward Ahmed Mitchell, executive director of the Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said the course description is disturbing.
Bores has been in public service for more than 45 years, according to information on the sheriff’s office website.
Mitchell said people have a right to express their views, even if its unfavorable to Muslims “but they do not have the right to do so while teaching official classes to law enforcement agencies on behalf of the State of Georgia.”
There has been an increase in hate crimes and rhetoric since the presidential campaign.
The number of hate crimes in the U.S. went up in 2016, according to the FBI. Data revealed an uptick in crimes against Jews, Muslims and LGBT people
Mitchell said police officers “ must learn to serve and protect all Georgia residents, including over 100,000 Georgia Muslims. Racism and anti-Semitism have no place in a law enforcement training course. Neither does anti-Muslim bigotry."
Barrow County Sheriff Jud Smith, said he has taken courses by Bores before and denies Bores unfairly singles out Muslims.
“If he was saying every Muslim in the world is a bad person and they want to kill us, I would stand up and say, ‘Brother, you are wrong’,” said Smith.
What Bores does talk about, said Smith, are different incidents and how to prevent terrorism.
“He dissects those attacks and says here are the signs to look for so you’re not profiling,” Smith said.
Bores is listed as director of intelligence for the Atlanta-based Defender Group, according to the organization’s website in 2016. It says company is made up of current, former and retired law enforcement professionals.