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Texas Pig Farmer Fight Muslim Invasion by Hosting Pig Races

pig-farmer  Texas Pig Farmer Fight Muslim Invasion by Hosting Pig Races pig farmer

Craig Baker

A Texas pig farmer just learns that Muslims trying to build a mosque had purchased the land next to his farm.  A dispute erupted after the Muslim group announced plans in September to build a mosque and community center at 1800 Baker Road, south of Interstate 10 and adjacent to Baker’s marble shop. Once the mosque is built, it will include a community center, athletic facilities and a school to serve about 500 Muslim families who live in the Katy area. [2]  The new Muslim landowner came to see Barker and actually had the audacity to ask him to leave. [1] Craig Baker, owns a pig farm, the Muslim community hates pigs. In an effort to “cleanse” the land, the Muslim landowner asked Baker to move out. [1] [2] [6] Baker instead decided to fight back. So it didn’t took a big stretch of imagination for the Barker family to  come out with an appropriate response. Needless to say, as the red-blooded American that he is, Baker instead decided to stick it out and show the Muslim man exactly what he thought of his request. [8] Baker did exactly what his farmer ancestors would have done: he started holding pig races every Friday at the same time Muslims are supposed to be saying their afternoon prayer. [3]  Baker, 46, said his intention is not to offend anyone with the races but to make clear that he will not be forced to move or relocate his marble-fabricating shop as he claims a member of the association previously urged him to. “I am just defending my rights and my property,” Baker said. “They totally disrespected me and my family.” [2] His wife, Susan Canavespe, said what Baker is doing with the pig races is not “mean-spirited, it’s just Texas-spirited.” [2] [3] Katy-area resident Phil Canavespe was one person who was willing to talk about the community’s concerns. He said he purchased land and a ranch house from the Bakers, and he backs the stance Baker is taking with the Muslim group. “This is not a racist or a religious issue,” Canavespe said. “It’s a two-lane, unmarked road with no shoulder or support for any type of church.” [2]

Pigrace  Texas Pig Farmer Fight Muslim Invasion by Hosting Pig Races PigraceNow that Baker began hosting the events, the muslim group is now saying that it is no longer offended he made good on his promise to stage Friday pig races next door to an 11-acre property the group has purchased to build a mosque. [2]  While members of the Katy Islamic Association attended afternoon prayer services, Baker was busy next door at 1918 Baker Road lining a track for 25 pigs to race on, assembling merchandise to sell to spectators and grilling sausages.  [3] About 100 people showed up for the event in the pouring rain. [2] [3] A spokesman for the association, Yousef Allam, said members are not upset anymore by Baker’s decision to race pigs, a forbidden meat in the Muslim culture, despite a Dec. 1 letter an attorney for the group sent to Baker demanding that he immediately remove the pigs from his own property. “He knows that Muslims can be emotional, but it does not bother me,” Allam said. “I don’t care if he races, roasts or slaughters pigs.” [2] [3]  Association members initially denied telling Baker that he should move, but both Baker and the group agreed that early encounters between them were cordial.  “Things changed with them saying maybe it would be a good time for you to consider packing up your family and packing up your business and moving somewhere farther out in the country,” Baker said.  [2]  Baker said Kamel Fotouh, the association’s president, deeply offended his family, whose ties to the land goes back some 200 years, in suggesting that they pack up and leave. His 90-year-old grandmother, Anna Baker, was the first female bus driver for the Katy Independent School District.  Allam said if any interaction between the group and Baker was interpreted as a threat for Baker to vacate his land, it was unintentional.  “If we somehow communicated that to him, then we apologize,” Allam said. [2] [3]  Allam said the races, should they continue, would have no bearing on Friday holy day services.  “When things calm down and he realizes we’re here to say, we will talk to him to resolve our differences,” Allam said.  Baker said people have made donations of $100 to $1,000 to sponsor the pig races. All the same, Baker plans to continue the weekly pig races until interest dwindles. [3]

Now that the dust has settle down a little bit, Baker later conceded, that the Muslims probably aren’t after his land anymore, but he said he had to go through with the pig races because “I would be like a total idiot if I didn’t. I’d be the laughingstock now because I’ve gone too far.” [3] Baker, also complained that media reports have miscast him as a racist and misquoted him, and to correct the situation he put up a Web site, www.AmericanPigRace.com, to tell his story.  About 300 local homeowners aired their fears about the mosque at an October town hall meeting. Chief among the concerns are that construction of the mosque will cause flooding, lower property values and increase traffic on the small, two-lane, asphalt road. [2] Many neighborhood residents insisted that they have nothing against Muslims and are more concerned about property values, drainage and traffic. [9]

[2] Helen Eriksen, Islamic association dismisses Katy pig races, Chron, December 30, 2006
[3] Texas man races pigs to protest mosque plans, USA Today, Posted 12/30/2006 4:13 PM ET
[4] Fred Grandy, Of pigs and prayer rugs, Daily Caller, 4:04 PM 03/17/2011
[5] Alan Noble, Racists Pig Racing?: Why Christians are Obligated to be Discerning on the Internet, Christ and Pop Culture, April 22, 2011
[6] Dr. Eowyn, Texan pig farmer vs. his Muslim neighbors, DC Clothesline, June 29, 2014
[7] Rottdawg, VOTD: Muslim Prayers vs. Pig Races, Joe for America, December 17, 2014
[8] Texas Pig Farmer Fights Back Against Muslim Who Tried To Make Him Leave, Mr Conservative, 2014/05/
[9] Alfonso Serrano, Neighbor Threatens Mosque With Pig Races, CBS News, December 7, 2006, 3:42 PM
[10] Mary Katharine Ham, Hatfields and Mohammeds: Pig Races Tick Off Texas Mosque, Town Hall, Dec 06, 2006
[13] Houston Suburb Dispute over Mosque Plan, NBC News,  12/7/2006 3:24:34 PM ET

About Bill Wallace

Bill Wallace is a self-fashioned writter, a computer programmer and cybermarketer from Quebec City, Canada who decided to enter the political arena after his disillusionment with the socialist system under which he was living in the French Canadian province of Quebec.

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