Obama: 'We can't be bystanders to bigotry'

Posted: 12:50 PM, Feb 03, 2016
Updated: 2016-02-04 06:29:43-05

President Barack Obama made an historic visit to a local mosque Wednesday.

The President acknowledged that while this is "a time of concern and a time of fear," given recent terror attacks, Americans should view mosques as cornerstones within the community, and should regularly celebrate the positive contributions of Muslim Americans.

"Muslim Americans are some of the most resilient and patriotic Americans," he said.

President Obama urged citizens of all faiths to respect freedom of religion, and to stand up against hate crimes and violence.

He also called on Muslim leaders to help combat extremism, saying the country would support voices that promote pluralism and peace.

It was the president's first visit to a mosque in the U.S. The visit comes after he called for a rejection of anti-Muslim rhetoric during his state of the union speech last month.