PHILADELPHIA — Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter wants to ban Donald Trump from the city after the Republican presidential candidate called for a national ban on Muslims entering the U.S., the Associated Press reported Tuesday.

Nutter calls Trump’s proposal “ignorant” and says if he had the power, he’d ban Trump from the city. He says Philadelphia doesn’t have “any room for that kind of stupidity.”

On Monday, Trump proposed stopping Muslims from coming to America “until we are able to determine and understand this problem and the dangerous threat it poses.” His suggestion was quickly condemned by other Republican and Democratic presidential candidates.

The mayor of St. Petersburg, Florida, tweeted earlier Tuesday that he also would ban Trump from his city.

Also Tuesday in Philadelphia, authorities are investigating an incident at a mosque after early-morning prayers Monday were disrupted by the discovery of a severed pig’s head on the mosque’s doorsteps.

The Washington Post reported:


A spokesman for the Al-Aqsa Islamic Society said surveillance cameras captured video of a red pickup truck that drove by the building twice Sunday night; during its second pass, an item was seen thrown out of the vehicle’s window and landing at the door of the mosque. Philadelphia police told The Washington Post that the object was thrown from the passenger side of the truck, and that the vehicle’s occupants are not visible in the video footage.

A worker opening the mosque – which is in the same building as an Islamic school and the Arab American Development Corp. – found the pig’s head around 6 a.m. Monday.

A mosque spokesman called it a “hate motivated” act. Pork is considered non-halal, or food that is not religiously sanctioned by Islamic law.

“It’s just a pig’s head – that’s not a big deal; but it does send a message,” said mosque spokesman and Arab American Development Corp. Director Marwan Kreidie. “I think people are worried that if they do a pig’s head, they could do something more violent in the future.”

Kreidie said he reported the incident to local and federal authorities.

When asked whether they were investigating it as a possible hate incident or crime, a Philadelphia Police Department spokesperson said: “As of now, it’s under investigation with an unknown motive. Once that determination has been made, I will follow up and let you know.”


Police interviewed potential witnesses on Monday, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

“We’ve got to be involved,” officer Pete Berndlmaier told the newspaper. “If they get away doing something like that, they are going to up the ante.”

Philadelphia Mayor-elect Jim Kenney called on the people of his city to “join me in rejecting this despicable act and supporting our Muslim neighbors.”

“The bigotry that desecrated Al-Aqsa mosque today has no place in Philadelphia,” Kenney said in a statement Monday.

The complex will be under increased police protection, Kreidie said.

A manager at Philadelphia’s Al-Aqsa Islamic Society said the mosque received a voicemail on Nov. 14 that alluded to the Paris attacks, according to police. “Are you happy about what happened in France?” the male voice stated. The persona also said, “God is a pig!” and “God is Pork!”


Kreidie doesn’t believe anyone from the surrounding community was responsible for throwing the pig’s head. This particular mosque hasn’t been targeted in the past, even after 9/11, Kreidie said. But national discourse about Muslims has become increasingly hostile lately.

Indeed, many Muslims in America report feeling or experiencing growing anti-Muslim sentiment, particularly since the terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino. That rhetoric, Muslims say, has also taken center stage in the political arena: On Monday, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump called for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.”

Trump has previously called for surveillance of some mosques and requiring Muslims to register with the government.

“There’s a constant climate of insinuation of terrorism and disloyalty that creates this pervasive sense of being an outsider,” Haroon Moghul, a fellow at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding in Washington, told The Post last week.

There have been other stories of severed pig heads being left at mosques. In 2006, someone threw a severed pig’s head into a Maine mosque as a group of men prayed inside. The suspect said it was a prank, but the incident rattled the Lewiston Somali community.

And on Sunday, a pig’s head was reportedly found in the bathroom of a university mosque in Australia.

“A lot of people think it’s kryptonite to Muslims and it’s not,” said Kreidie, the Philadelphia mosque spokesman. “It’s just degrading and humiliating to people, and you know why it’s being done.”

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