By Jon Dougherty

Increasingly, it appears as though the Democratic Left in America has chosen Muslims as the new “protected class,” according to recent actions taken by the major social media platforms.

A post by The Gateway Pundit‘s Cristina Laila noted that she was warned recently by Twitter after posting a message which called for banning burqas — an outer garment worn by women in some Islamic traditions to cover themselves in public — in the U.S. because it was considered blasphemous…in Pakistan.

Laila wrote:

The specific Pakistani blasphemy laws that the tweet violated are punishable by life imprisonment or death and Twitter happily delivered the threat.

But these warnings are just the beginning.

She noted further that immediately after the recent terror attacks in New Zealand, in which two mosques were targeted by a self-described “eco-fascist” who praised communist China, a U.S.-based Muslim organization with known ties to Middle East terrorist organizations, the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) immediately placed the blame on President Donald Trump’s ‘rhetoric’ — specifically, his early executive orders banning travel to the U.S. from countries known to harbor terrorist elements.

CAIR and Leftist Democrats, as well as most of the American “mainstream” media, have always described Trump’s actions as being taken against “Muslim-majority countries,” though they didn’t describe Barack Obama’s executive actions barring travel to the U.S. from the same countries in the same way.

Interestingly, CAIR research director Dr. Abbas Barzegar attacked the First Amendment during a press conference after the shootings, saying we should “not allow these people to exploit freedom of speech.”

Just like Sharia Law, in which any criticism of Muslims or the Islamic faith is prohibited.

“We ask our political leaders to address growing menace of Islamophobia,” Barzegar continued. “The perpetrator of this terrorist attack has been inspired by hatemongers in the United States.”

Or so the perp, Australian Brenton Tarrant, wrote. But he wrote a lot of things in his rambling 74-page manifesto, including that he drew “inspiration” from American conservative activist Candace Owens, who is black. How does an alleged white supremacist bigot draw inspiration from a black woman?

In any event, Barzegar continued:

We have to put a stop to it. We have to ask our TV networks to be responsible. We have to ask our social media platforms to be responsible. We have to ask our charities and philanthropic communities to be responsible and not allow these people to guide, to exploit freedom of speech, exploit nonprofit covers – these are hate groups, special interest groups with a very nefarious agenda and we have to take that activity back.

He seems to be arguing that any criticism — in public, in media, or online — amounts to some sort of ‘hate crime’ that should be punished.

Meanwhile, Muslim criticism of Christianity or Western principles, mores, values, and politics does not draw the same condemnation or legal action.

Laila noted:

CAIR will argue that online criticism of Islam is an “incitement to violence” and should be charged as a “cyber terrorism crime.”

In fact, it is already happening — A California man was arrested, prosecuted and hit with misdemeanor charges in 2017 for posting 5 anti-Islam posts on Facebook in 2016.

The California Attorney General’s office argued the man’s comments constituted “repeated contact by means of an electronic communication device” with “intent to annoy or harass,” a misdemeanor under California law, reported the Daily Caller.

How are five posts to an Islamic Center’s Facebook page considered “repeated contact?” This was just another way to impose Sharia law onto a concerned American citizen.

The social media giants have already indicated they are more than willing to shut down conservatives who ‘violate community standards’ with overt criticism of protected-class members including black liberals, Hispanics, and other minorities.

But Muslim groups in the U.S. and aboard appear to have begun an influence campaign to force media and social media companies to treat criticism of Islam as an actionable offense, which, of course, is anathema to the purpose of the First Amendment.

Criticism is not “hate speech,” Laila notes:

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