A Climate of Fear and Hate

Interview with Texas Public Radio

Last week, a man was pulled off a Greyhound Bus in Amarilloand detained for 30 hours because he spoke a foreign language and was wearing a turban. Earlier this week, An Italian mathematician was removed from a U.S. flight for working on his equations. Both were thought to be Muslim terrorists, one was Daljeet Singh, a Sikh man from India. The other, Guido Menzio, is an Ivy League economist.

A culture of fear and xenophobia have given rise to the widespread acceptance of racial profiling and knee-jerk overreaction. Islamophobia has not only become acceptable, it has been encouraged by many public officials. One has to look no further than the presumptive GOP presidential nominee to find a plan that would ban all Muslims from coming to the U.S. A plan he has tried to distance himself from this week.

To say its mainstream is an understatement, and in Texas it is just as bad.

“This is very much happening in Texas. Hate crimes are up against Muslims. Vandalism against mosques, school bullying is up, and many of our public officials are participating in the anti-Muslim sentiment,” says Simran Jeet Singh.

Singh, who is an assistant professor of Religion at Trinity University recentlyreleased a paper detailing the troubling pattern of Islamophobic sentiments expressed by public leaders, including Governor Greg Abbott.

Have we allowed islamophobia to become acceptable and how can we change it?

 

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