MASSAPEQUA PARK - An interfaith prayer for tolerance held today outside Rep. Peter King's (R-Seaford) Massapequa Park office quickly became a war of words over hearings on the alleged radicalization of U.S. Muslims.
Many of the pro-King demonstrators were vocal in their support of the congressman, saying the hearings he had proposed must go forward to help investigate the possibility that terror cells could be fostered in the U.S. by the Muslim community.
However, Muslim demonstrators say Rep. King's hearings are misguided.
"If Mr. King is sincere about the homegrown terrorist threat as we all are, then he must hold his hearings on all terrorist groups," says Dr. Shaik Ubaid, of the Muslim Peace Coalition.
King says there have been 53 homegrown terrorists arrested and indicted over the last several years, and that as the chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives' Homeland Security Committee, he must investigate the threat.
He says he appreciates today's discourse outside his office, but says his hearings will begin on Capitol Hill as planned March 10.
Rep. King: Homegrown terrorism a growing threat