A New York City judge is facing a backlash after taking her oath using the holy book of Islam in recognition of her Muslim faith. Carolyn Walker-Diallo was elected last month in Brooklyn’s 7th Municipal District and took her oath of office last week using the Quran.
After attenders posted a video of the swearing-in session to social media, conservatives unleashed a storm on insults toward the public servant. “Sickening,” one Facebook user posted in response to the video. “Is this America or the Middle East.” “Another piece of s--- Muslim,” another user wrote, “trying to take over this country.” The web site Allen West Republic published an article about the ceremony titled "Obama’s America: Muslim Woman Sworn in As Judge, Look at the FIRST Thing She Does!"
Walker-Diallo referenced her faith on her campaign site. “All is praise (sic) is indeed due to the Most High!” she said in a post thanking her supporters. “I am humbled that my community has entrusted me with the immense responsibility of ensuring that EVERYONE has notice and a FAIR opportunity to be heard in the halls of justice.” Walker-Diallo presides over the 7th Municipal Court District of East New York, Cypress Hills, Bushwick and Brownsville in Brooklyn.
— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) December 16, 2015
Muslim judges have previously been elected to the bench in New York. In 2013, Sheila Abdus-Salaam served as the first black woman and first Muslim on the Court of Appeals, the state’s highest judicial body. And Minnesota Rep. U.S. Keith Ellison was also sworn in on a Quran after he took office in 2006.
But the fuss over Walker-Diallo’s oath of office comes as Republican leaders have made anti-Muslim comments after Islamic State group supporters carried out terror attacks in Paris and California in recent weeks. “It’s really horrific what’s happening,” Sadyia Khalique, director of operations for the New York chapter of the Council on American–Islamic Relations, told the New York Daily News. “This is a proud moment for her, and to have this much criticism is just really sad. In our society, there is so much hate.”