Explaining the rise in hate crimes against Muslims in the US

file-20170719-13567-pyqde6Hate crimes against Muslims have been on the rise. The murder of two samaritans for aiding two young women who were facing a barrage of anti-Muslim slurs on a Portland train is among the latest examples of brazen acts of anti-Islamic hatred.

Earlier in 2017, a mosque in Victoria, Texas was burned to the ground by an alleged anti-Muslim bigot. And just last year, members of a small extremist group called “The Crusaders” plotted a bombing “bloodbath” at a residential housing complex for Somali-Muslim immigrants in Garden City, Kansas.

I have analyzed hate crime for two decades at California State University-San Bernardino’s Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism. And I have found that the rhetoric politicians use after terrorist attacks is correlated closely to sharp increases and decreases in hate crimes.

Hate crimes post 9/11

Since 1992 (following the promulgation of the Hate Crime Statistics Act of 1990), the FBI has annually tabulated hate crime data voluntarily submitted from state and territorial reporting agencies. A “hate crime” is defined as a criminal offense motivated by either race, ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender or gender identity.

According to the FBI’s data, hate crimes against Muslims reported to police surged immediately following the terror attacks of 9/11. There were 481 crimes reported against Muslims in 2001, up from 28 the year before. However, from 2002 until 2014, the number of anti-Muslim crimes receded to a numerical range between 105 to 160 annually. This number was still several times higher than their pre-9/11 levels.

FULL ARTICLE FROM THE CONVERSATION 

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Standing With Our Muslim Neighbors: How You Can Be An Ally

RallySign_RefugeesMuslims-2Americans United partnered with the Bridge Initiative yesterday to host a Facebook Live discussion, “Standing With Our Muslim Neighbors.”

As reports continue that President Donald J. Trump any day could issue a new executive order restricting Muslim immigration and that anti-Muslim rhetoric and hate groups are increasing, we wanted to offer some practical suggestions on how you can be a good ally to the Muslim community.

“We know that Islamophobia has been extremely visible since the Muslim ban was announced,” said Erin Hagen, AU’s field associate, who emceed the discussion. “But [it] has long been present in the United States, and we really have a lot of work ahead of us to fight back against it.”

Kristin Garrity Şekerci, a research fellow with Georgetown University’s Bridge Initiative, offered several resources for how non-Muslims can learn more about Islam and how they can support the Muslim community.

“For me, I think the most important thing you can do and the best place to start is education, education, education,” said Sekerci.

Şekerci recommended reviewing the statistics on hate crimes against Muslims to understand the prejudice they face and looking to organizations that offer resources for combatting Islamophobia. Among them is the Bridge Initiative, which is based at Georgetown’s Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding; it combines research into Islamophobia with methods for addressing prejudice against the religion.

Other resources she suggested include South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT); Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR); the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC); the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU); the Center for American Progress; and the FBI’s Hate Crimes division.

Beyond that, Şekerci said getting to know Muslims is key: “You’re more likely to have more favorable views about Islam and Muslims if you know a Muslim personally.”

FULL ARTICLE FROM AMERICANS UNITED WEBSITE 

American Muslims use pop culture to dispel stereotypes

src.adapt.960.high.80500147.1379530505490Since 9/11, many American Muslims have struggled with misconceptions and stereotypes made about them and their religion. According to a Pew Research Center study, a majority of US Muslims say it is more difficult to be a Muslim in the US after 9/11. Yet many have decided to fight these stereotypes with good humor – literally.

The Muslims are Coming is a documentary that follows Muslim comedians as they use their stand-up shows and pranks to fight Islamophobia:

FULL ARTICLE WITH MORE VIDEOS FROM AL JAZEERA

US Muslims Launch Counter Hate Campaign

WASHINGTON – A US Muslim civil liberties and advocacy group has announced its plans to erect its own advertisements in Metro stations to combat anti-Muslim hateful ads that equate Muslims with “savages.”

“We take these hate messages very seriously,” Nihad Awad, Executive Director of the Council on American Islamic Relations, told WUSA news channel on Friday, October 12.

“They need to be countered through collective American efforts to reject Islamic phobia and hate mongering and celebrate the forgiveness, free speech but also civil speech.”

The ad campaign is the second in an American state following earlier campaign in New YorkThe counter ad campaign was planned after a federal judge ruled that no one could stop the signs from going up in Washington metro stops, citing freedom of speech.

FULL ARTICLE FROM ISLAM ONLINE