Muslim Americans on Times Square screen

At a time when Muslim Americans want to stress their American-ness…

The New York chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations has unveiled a public service announcement on the CBS Super Screen in Times Square.

The theme is: “I am Muslim, I am American.”

It features an NYPD sergeant, a Little League all-star, a human rights activist, a doctoral candidate, and an attorney. All Muslims.

The 15-second announcement will air every hour for 18 hours each day through January 16. The Super Screen is a 26-foot by 20-foot full-motion screen.

The Fort Hood massacre and the recent arrests of five young American Muslims in Pakistan have the American Muslim community trying to thwart concerns about Muslim extremism in this country.

CAIR-NY Community Affairs Director Faiza N. Ali says: “This public service advertisement features ordinary American Muslims whose everyday lives are dedicated to building community and serving country. This initiative is part of our ongoing effort to ensure that a fair and accurate portrayal of Islam and Muslims is presented to the American public.”

Gary Stern

Gary Stern covered education in the Lower Hudson Valley for several years during the early 1990s. Now's he back on the beat. He believes that schools are one of the main reasons that people live around here and that educational issues -- from curriculum to financing -- are among the most challenging things that journalists can write about. He continues to be amazed by the complexity of educational jargon. Gary got his B.A. at SUNY Buffalo and his M.A. from the University of Missouri Journalism School (where his master's thesis was about the best ways to cover education). He lives in White Plains with his wife and two sons, who attend public schools.