Reform urged to stem rise of hate crimes against Muslims
Anti-Muslim acts increased by an unprecedented 70 percent last year compared with 2002, the Washington Post reported May 3.
But Arizona's increase was the worst, at 584 percent.
Nationwide, 1,019 complaints of discrimination or violence were received, up from 602 a year earlier, reported the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a prominent civil rights group.
These included 93 hate crimes, more than double the 2002 count.
Most complaints concerned religious and ethnic profiling and denial of religious accommodation, along with the workplace discrimination.
"There are a number of factors, including government policies targeting Muslims and pro-war rhetoric in the beginning of 2003, that we believe led to this disturbing increase in Muslim civil rights complaints," said Dr. Mohamed Nimer, the CAIR research director who wrote the "Unpatriotic Acts" report.
Other contributing factors listed are a lingering atmosphere of post-9/11 fear, abuses associated with implementation of the Patriot Act and a disturbing increase in Muslim-bashing on radio talk shows. Also, in many cases, laws allegedly were applied more harshly because of ethnic or religious background.
In view of this, CAIR on April 17 launched a campaign, "Hate Hurts America," based on the conviction that increased attacks on Islam by conservative talk show hosts is not only offensive to Muslims and other people of conscience, but also to America itself.
The government blurred the clear distinction between immigrant and terrorism cases, reported the Office of Inspector General of the Justice Department.
Between Sept. 11, 2001, and August 2002, expired visas led to arrests of 738 Muslims and Arabs - none of whom was given access to lawyers or family members. These people even were denied their basic constitutional right to know what charges had been filed against them.
Furthermore, many of them were held in inhumane conditions: locked in cells 23 hours a day, taunted by officials and slammed against walls. Yet none of these "suspects" was found to be linked to any act of terrorism.
Indeed, Muslim visitors and immigrants are singled out and required to report to government offices to be fingerprinted, photographed and assigned registration numbers. The 13,000 who complied still were subject to deportation for violation of minor immigration requirements.
Law enforcement bias against Muslims is common, with widespread incidents of prosecution on minor violations, such as failure to mow lawns or leaving garbage cans outside a house.
Banks and other financial institutions harass Muslims and Arabs in enforcing the Patriot Act by arbitrarily asking them to provide detailed documentation of their identities and financial and tax records.
What will remedy such inexcusable discrimination against these Americans?
Among the possible solutions is the End Racial Profiling Act, championed by U.S. Rep. John Conyers and Sen. Russell Feingold to dissuade officials to engage in racial profiling and provide legal options for the victims.
The Department of Justice should implement reforms suggested by its own Office of Inspector General, and it should adhere to constitutional protections during government investigations.
Congress must hold open hearings on post-9/11 rules and procedures (including the Patriot Act) enacted by the Bush administration to examine their effects on security and civil liberties. Then Congress should endorse amendments to safeguard both, with care, concern and understanding.
In addition, the Federal Communications Commission should reinstate the "Fairness Doctrine," passed by both houses of Congress in 1987 but vetoed by the president, to ensure coverage of controversial public issues is balanced and fair.
Siraj Mufti, Ph.D., is a researcher and freelance journalist.
Topics: Government And Politics
Thanks for reading my comments and responding to them. Brothers like you remind me of the character of one of the beloved companions of our Prophet (SAWS), Hazrat Umar-bin-Khattab (RA), based on whatever little I have read about him.
Hazrat Umar (RA) is supposed to have been an angry kind of person who's sword will always be half ready to knock the head down of anyone who would even try to insinuate at insulting our Prophet (SAWS) or Islam.
I beleive that every muslim does need to strive to acquire atleast an iota of Hazrat Umar's (RA) Eeman, his kind of Taqwa and his kind of sense of Jihad. InshaAllah, May Allah bless us with that kind of Eeman, Taqwa and Tawheed.
Indeed, Sabr is one of the best attitudes a person can have and May Allah grant us all the ability to have Sabr.
May Allah Bless us with the gift of knowledge for knowledge is power. May Allah Bless all the Muslims of the world. May Allah deliver from tyranny and oppression, our Muslim brothers and sisters in Palestine, Chechnya, Kashmir, Afghanistan and in all corners of the world where they are being oppressed, may Allah grant them the gift of Sabr, and Help them for indeed Allah's Help is the greatest Help and there's no substitute for it.
You claim US IQ being superior, you were probably talking about immigrant, Americans certainly NOT the average American who can barely sign his/her name let alone read. Regarding US education, my good man you are worse than an Ostrich. Get your head out of the sand and, as you Americans say, wake up and smell the coffee. US Math and Science test scores fared even worse than a number of Third World countries such as Sudan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Digibouti - good God Man even in English ? Michael smell the pure air of reality - not your arm pits and then cry. Your sentiments smack that of the average US soldier in Iraq or Afghanistan - just plain vapid and goofy. I bet you still think Saddam and the Taliban conspired to bring about the 9-11 debacle, don't you? The day you chaps appreciate stark cold reality, thats the day you might be on your road to recovery - you can start by throwing John Wayne out of the White House...and someone please teach him how to read...why does he strut about like a cowboy? he is not even from Texas, he is from Maine, where he has a DWI conviction - and he is your president?
About the sharp tongue and a sharp sword? Whether I aggreed? The Chinese referred to the Muslim Arabs, "They came with the Quran in one hand and the scimitar in the other." The same Chinese said about the Muslim Turks, "They came with the scimitar(long sword) in one hand and the yataghan(short sword) in the other. Knowing what we know, maybe both the Arabs and the Turks would have entered China's empire with a scimitar in both hands! I know I would've! That's my assumption though, and nobody should come back on that and take it as truth and based on it consider the Muslims blood thirsty folk.
How did you know that I enjoyed eating hot? And I mean HOT! I remember a noted friend of mine that used to say, among our nation(Palestinian) the Ghazans are eating the hottest. I don't know if you eat as hot as them. One way to find out. We invited to my dinner a known Ghazan that was eating hotter than the regular Ghazans. He was eating the dinner crying and tearing all over the place. I asked him surprized:'Don't you eat hot?' He answered me wiping his tears,'Yes, I do Abu Muhammad, like normal people do. But this one is poison!' Like this I know, I really eat hot!
I remember a hadith when a bedouin came to the prophet,pbuh, in a very agitated state saying forcibly,"Oh prophet, councel me!" Muhammad,pbuh, answered,"Do not get angry.", The badouin asked him again and the same answer the prophet gave him over again untill his third time. Then the bedouin understood that the prophet was in fact councelling him not merely urging him to calm down. I always remember this hadith after my temper strike, unfortunately.
You sound JUST like my eldest brother. A true rebel with a great heart who never fails to defend the weak at his own peril!!
Still, he is a God-fearing man who never fails to speak his maind in front of whoever! but like you is still learning at the age of 56 to control himself and his lashing tongue. Truly life is wonderful and we all have so much in common and to offer. Allah has been kind to most of us, alahmdule'Allah.
Brother Deedat was a master speaker and knew his subject very well. I was fortunate to see him speak in Bahrain about two decades ago. God bless his soul. He is a good man to emulate.
Many thanks to islamcity for the courage to publish diverse views and close the gap of cultural divide. "Wa jadeloohum bi alati hia ahsan." A lesson we all need to learn. But my eldest brother would disagree that in some cases it would take a sharp tongue and may be even a sharp sword to quell the vicious ones? Hudd might agree?? For me the jury is still out. Yet it would take a lot to control ones temper if ones DNA is made up of hot chillies! Perhaps that is the reason for 'Jihad Al-Akbar".
Peace be upon all.
Yes, very true, I have a very firy character that not once brought me in to trouble, not that I couldn't handle, but it wouldn't make me proud.
As for the "knowledge", I am an old man(50), that lived among many nations and on five continents. Australasia and Antartica are the single two continents I didn't visit. Seeing so many things and events I wanted to understand their origin, and that made me study cultures, religions and customs. No big deal, accomlishable the easy way nowadays, the computer. In my time this was still a matter of fiction.
No brother, I do not post on the name HA, but I enjoy his comments as well as yours and others. Yet I did not post on any other name but Hudd D'Alhamd. If I would, Hudd would stay, since this is an early nickname, given to me by Urdu speaking Muslims in Durban, South Africa, especially for my vehement and sometimes violent youth. But I like it especially because the implication with the gate of Hudd where ad-Dajjal will be killed by Issa in Palestine. And my paternal line is Palestinian.
I love Islam more than my own self. One can make personal attacks on my character or family, maybe he gets away with a missing tooth, but if Islam is attacked I break bones! That's the way I am, bad enough brother and believe me, I am used more to criticism than praise. I tried to change, I did over the years, I'm getting old that's one reason for improvement, but otherwise I am the scourge of Kalahari. Rather pray for me brother, I need Allah's mercy and guidance to Sabr(patience & constancy).
That is the most prejudiced and ignorant statement I've ever read. And acutaly the top selling paper in NY is the New York Times (A very liberal paper, that is anti-war and clearly left wing). And considering the large Democratic following of NY it could be construed as liberal in itself. Plus there was a study done that Americans are the hardest working people on Earth, meaning we put in more hours and work longer in life than any other country. I myself work 60 hours a week at one job, go to school at night and on the weekends, and work 4 nights a week waiting tables for an extra 20 hours of work a week. Add the fact that a nations IQ is directly related to its GDP. America rates as the highest the nation with the highest IQ. Whether that's from our mixed cultures and backgrounds I really don't know. But to call us simple minded dolts is just patently untrue. In fact you being from the U.K. have no right to criticize. Your country is a replica of America after we took over as world power and the U.K. floundered they have followed our lead on everything. America has also defeated communism, Nazism, saved your hide in WWII, and we'll defeat terrorism too. God bless Mary and lighten up.
Other than that discriminating against any "American" is wrong and they must be afforded there constitutional rights. However foreigners that aren't citizens or legal residents have no real rights in America especially at a time of war, be them Muslim, Christian, Jewish, European, Black...
Indeed, you have tried to explain the sum and substance of Islam in a very simple way. I am not sure if it can be put forward in a more simpler way. Allah has gifted you with the power of words, and thoughtful expressions and you are putting that talent to a good use here, AlhamduLillah! May the Almighty Allah reward you, and benefit as many people that visit this site as possible, both Muslim and non-muslim, InshaAllah.
Though I should admit that you at times become indignant when someone here posts offensive comments, and use some improper words, I do enjoy your posts and learn from them.
Indeed, Allah has bestowed you with knowledge, and Islamicity.com has given you the opportunity to you to come here and share your knowledge with us. Please continue to post your comments, and let us benefit from your knowledge, and may Allah help us share among ourselves, whatever little knowledge we have. Peace unto you!
PS: BTW, just curious to know if you sometimes post comments as HA as well? or if HA is a different person? Thank you! and Allah Hafiz!
I was happy to read the input from everyone.This leads me to reflect on an ayah from the Quran where Allah swt says that 'do you believe[to all the believers] that salavation cannot be realised without any sacrifice.That is why all the Prophets from Adam to Moses, to Jesus & Muhammad p.b.u.t had to suffer during their tenure, to uphold what was right and to forbid what was evil.
So I pray and request all the true believers in God to be steadfast in their endeavours and hold the rope of GOD in happiness and sufferings!
*p.b.u.t-Peace and blessings of the Almighty be upon them.
For that matter I need to point out that, at one time or other,every minority group had to face similar problems.This was caused by unnecessary overemphasising and stereotyping by the mainstream media.It happened to the African-Americans,to the Jews,to Polish,to the Germans,to the Chinese,the Italians,the Catholics,the Japanese &so forth.Now it's time for the Muslims.So,inshallah I think this is the fist step of Islam being integrated into mainstream America.
After all, in Islam we find the true Christian values as embodied by Prophet Jesus pbuh.
With all due respect, your article is a bit off base. I don't agree with hate crimes of any type, but apparently some muslims don't seem to have that same perspective. So far, we have seen 3,000 people get killed by some coward flying a plane into the side of a building...then another two men were beheaded, video taped and all in the name of Islam. God said "thall shall not kill"....apparently, Isalm missed this. I guess you expect the USA to wittness such an act and then in turn not do anything about it....well think again. The government tried to do what they felt was right....put a lockdown on any possilbe terrorist. I don't agree with violating peoples rights....and that includes muslims. But the USA had to act quickly and I don't think being P.C. was an issue to worry about at the time. No government is perfect and that inlcudes the USA, but at least we try to do the right thing for the most people. If someone is in this country illegally then America has the right to put them out. PERIOD! It's funny that you mention constitutional rights, but yet you hate America and all that it stands for. Well guess what, America was founded on that Constitution...so there is one of many of the muslim's double standards. You preach one thing, yet do another. Does the word: Hipocrit ring a bell? This is very simple....Muslim's attacked the USA and now the USA is attacking back.
SPACE, an infinite emptiness, the sole presence, GOD. He creates the helpers, His Angels. The angels bow down in submission to God, birth of ISLAM! When God was ALONE without his first and continuous creation, there was no Islam. Reason, there was nothing to submit to Him. You dig?Thus with his first creation the angels, ISLAM was born. This GOD is not part of the reality we know, because God created reality and He cannot be part of his creation. Thus nothing can be compared to him, nothing can get to him nothing can hurt him and he cannot get in physical contact with nobody. As the Jewish scriptures state. "No one can see the Face of God and live after."Now, my retard brother, all the religions you mentioned, except Islam do not honour this GOD and His Definition. Let me explane:
JUDAISM: Jacob physically fought with God and won. Thus his name was changed to Israel. He could not fight GOD, he fought something else. Judaism dismissed.
I have the feeling that you Mary speak against the government of USA and those numbskulls that blindly support it, either out of ignorance or shere stupidity. I am with you on this one.
You Lee, I think you speak on behalf of all those clairvoyant Americans that silently acknowledge that something is very wrotten in their government and honestly try to figure it out.
I personally disapprove entirely with the one-sided American policy in which they dismissed a world organization. Nations do not see themselves living in the shadow of USA, no country will accept that, and if USA does not see that pretty soon, she will have more than al-Qaeda on her list of terrorists, countries that once were her friends. I believe in world mutual colaboration. There is a difference between one thundering voice of a bully or the chorus of a croud! I believe that if you travelled away from the opposit limits where you reside in your arguments, toward a common goal of upholding the human values of people everywhere you would be on the same side of the fen
Hats off to you! You have indeed spoken the truth. I have deep and immense respect who are fair and just in their thoughts and actions. I appreciate your thoughts! May the Almighty reward you for your out spoken ness and for speaking the truth!
I agree with some of your criticism of the U.S. government, but I disagree with much of your stereotyping of American people. Have you ever traveled to the United States? Not everyone is racist! I teach in Texas--home of President Bush--and 99 percent of the students, teachers, and administrators and community members are not racist!
Also, yes, I have extensive background knowledge about immigration in the U.S.--my wife is an Indian muslim from Singapore! Three days ago she received her legal residency. And guess what? She received her green card at the Department of Homeland Security! The agents there were so friendly that they actually walked with us, hugged, shook our hands, and congratulated us. The same thing happened when we told our Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, and Hindu friends.
Yes, the U.S. has the most liberal immigration policy in the world. Sure, our government has stepped up interdiction efforts. But then again our government offers free education to illegals--they're in my classes--and also free medical. Have you ever been to an immigration office before in the U.S.? They're packed every day with immigrants trying to become Americans.
And no, my parents never said that my becoming muslim was akin to joining a terrorist organization. Definitely, too many Americans hold this view about Islam, but then again not enough muslim Americans interact with the public to refute this attitude. I don't know if you're muslim or not, but a requirement is for every muslim to check his own behavior before expecting anything from anyone else. The problem muslims have today is that they make little effort to interact with the public, the result being that muslims appear mysterious/dangerous to others.
Inshallah, I will pray that you become muslim so that you will understand our faith better. Also, I pray that you change your attitudes about American people. Most of us are not what you read in your medi
I am responding to your vitriolic criticism of Americans. As both Muslim and American, I find your comments to be both stereotypical and hurtful, considering that many Americans are some of the friendliest people a person could ever meet. My family is Christian and American, yet they welcome people from different religious, cultural, and ethnic backgrounds with open arms. I could point out to you how hypocritical it sounds to hear someone from Britian holding a moral highground when her country has been largely responsible for so much bloodshed, heartache, and violence in the last two hundred years--I'll let you do the research. You can point out to me how stupid, how childish, how ignorant Americans are all you want, but one must accept the simple fact that the U.S. accepts the most immigrants of any nation on the planet. Why? The real reason is that most people like living here, including most of us Muslims. Our government is the closest thing to an Islamic one. It's easy to criticize the U.S., but then again we're not the ones banning Muslim girls from wearing hijabs--it's "liberal" France and "Muslim" Turkey. Please be more considerate before lumping an entire nation of people together as nothing more than a bunch of thugs.
The article is quite edifying and informative. Whenever I read articles of this nature, I feel sadness in my heart. Nevertheless, after I ponder what the so called "Muslims" are doing, I get a sense of relief because I put a part of the blame on them. They are the ones who have set many bad examples throughout the world. They have no strong leadership of any kind. Even in the USA, it seems that the Muslim community is deaf-mute. Muslims do not organize interstate conventions to tackle all the hate and discrimination which are increasing throughout the country. Where are the Muslim lawyers, doctors, professors, merchants, intellectuals, etc.? Where are they? On anothoer footnote, what kind of mosque is this (look at the attached link) when we have millions of funds raised to build new ones and refurbish the old ones? Check this out:
Isn't Allah's house of worship supposed to be a house of cleanliness and a tight organizaiton? This is unbelievable!! No wonder, others from other faiths have taken us for jokes!
What to do about it? I think the solution is simpler than you might think: educate people about the religion (e.g. shows on TV, articles, websites like this, etc.)