There has been a lot of discussion surrounding Muslims after recent bombings in Paris at the hands of ISIS and comments made against the religion by Presidential candidate Donald Trump. It is frivolous to argue that Islamophobia isn’t spreading in the United States, as well as other countries in Europe. Fear of Muslims, or more specifically Islamic extremists (individuals belonging to groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda), has caused some U.S. states to close their doors to refugees from Syria*.
*(more than 9 million Syrians were displaced in the last few years and many are traveling to Europe and the U.S. to escape the violence perpetrated by groups and individuals like ISIS).
The U.S. media and political figures consistently misuse Islamic concepts like Sharia law and jihad, resulting in more public fear and confusion. The Council on American-Islamic Relations established an Islamophobia monitor to collect and display the sources of Islamophobia.
Some politicians and large corporations are using Muslims as scapegoats for foreign and domestic security concerns. Donald Trump is one of the most notorious of these figures, leading a strong movement against the Muslim “problem.” In addition to the various statements Trump has released, like these from NBC News, The Telegraph, and The Washingston Post, he also discusses his ideas with Jimmy Kimmel in the video below (entitled “Donald Trump Says Muslims Support His Plan” from the Jimmy Kimmel Live Youtube channel).
Filmmaker Michael Moore was one of the responders to Trump’s incessant Islam bashing, helping fuel #WeAreAllMuslim with his petition and letter to Donald Trump that you can sign.
Others are standing up against Islamophobia and working to address America’s fear of the religion. Brandon Stanton of Humans of New York (HONY) posted the below statement on his Facebook page regarding comments made on some of his posts profiling a female refugee from Iraq named Aya (you can read more about her here). HONY has dedicated many of its recent posts to Aya’s journey from Iraq and her application to come to the U.S. as a refugee.
Another avid opposer to Trump’s anti-Muslim campaign is presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, an Independent Senator from Vermont.
#WeAreAllMuslim has made a significant impact on the general Muslim and non-Muslim populations in the U.S. Mariya Tayyab, a student at the University of Virginia and writer at the Huffington Post, wrote the following article, “We Are All Muslims Indeed, Michael Moore” in response to his post.
“Messages like Michael Moore's were what reminded me that not everyone is okay with stereotyping, not everyone is okay with putting the blame of a few extremists on an entire group. So I want to thank him, thank you for reminding all of us that we are all Muslim. That we are all Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, and atheists. That we are all black and white.
If you’re interested in joining the movement, you can look at and sign Moore’s petition/letter to Trump here. It is very important to stand against xenophobes and Islamophobes, especially with recent attacks committed by a very small percentage of the religion’s population. Show Trump and all the others lashing out at Islam that you do not stereotype or condemn Muslims for their religion and the acts of others.