Why we Support Chicago 2016
  About   |   Contact   |   Donate   |   Site Map   |   About Islam   |   Activist Corner   >> Today is Friday, March 27, 2015  
Our News
Our Multimedia
CAIR-Chi in the Press
Action Alerts
Press Releases
Media Monitor
Hate Watch
The Scoop
Civil Rights Center
Intern Center
Volunteer Center
Career Center
Resource Center
Report An Incident
Write to the Media
Request A Speaker
Make A Donation
Become A Member
Annual Events
Our Partners
The Mobilizer Blog
MYLS Website
Our Old Site | Oldest
Contact us

Phobias against Muslims and Islam are a reality
September 10, 2006

By Steve Arney

In 2002, the Council on American-Islamic Relations reported 602 cases of civil rights abuses against Muslims in the United States. In the most recent year of reporting, 2004, it reported 1,522.

CAIR Chicago office spokesman Sultan Muhammad doesn't doubt that reporting frequency has increased somewhat, but he said the overwhelming proof is that segments of America are finding ethnic and religious profiling acceptable post-Sept. 11.

There have been educational efforts to distinguish Muslims as a whole from radical terrorists, but Muhammad fears the message largely is lost amid daily world news, where voices of violence and radicalism gain more attention than voices of condemnation, and in domestic political rhetoric.

He said, "The majority of the impact has been embedded phobia against Muslims and Islam. Islamaphobia is a reality."

In a 2006 poll CAIR found one in four respondents believe Islam is a religion of hatred.

That number may be conservative.

An ABC News/Washington Post poll asked, "Do you think mainstream Islam encourages violence against non-Muslims or is it a peaceful religion?"

Thirty-three percent said it was violent; 54 percent said peaceful; 13 percent were unsure.

In another poll, 39 percent of respondents admitted feeling some prejudice against U.S. Muslims.

Among CAIR's biggest complaints, statistically, is what it classifies as "unreasonable arrest," accounting for a quarter of the civil rights complaints. It refers to arrests without probable cause of a crime.

But it also documents claims of job discrimination, threats, housing discrimination, hate crimes and lack of religious accommodation.

Among Muhammad's biggest concerns is that people in positions of leadership feed into the situation, by endorsing racial profiling and making sweeping remarks, some of them highly offensive to Muslims, turban-wearing Sikhs and others. He cites two examples in the following reporting from Associated Press:

  • Rep. John Cooksey, R-La.: "If I see someone come in and he's got a diaper on his head and a fan belt around that diaper on his head, that guy needs to be pulled over and checked."

  • Paul Nelson, Wisconsin congressional candidate: "Racial profiling is one way that we can cut down on security risks," Nelson said in an interview with WIXK Radio in New Richmond. When asked how to tell what a Muslim male looks like, Nelson replied, "Well, you know, if he comes in wearing a turban and his name is Mohammed, that's a good start."

  • Copyright © 2006, Pantagraph Publishing Co.

    First Name:

    Last Name:


    I liked it          I didn't like it    I am indifferent   



    28 E. Jackson Blvd, Suite 1700, Chicago, IL 60604 | T: (312) 212-1520 | F: (312) 212-1530
    | Our News | News Briefs | Action Alerts | Press Center | Events/Workshops | In the News | Volunteer Center | Media Monitor | Resource Center | Report An Incident |
    Request A Speaker | Make A Donation | Downloads | Multimedia | The Scoop | Our Partners | Careers | Interns | Newsletter | Contact Us | Proud To Be Muslim |
    All Rights Reserved. Copyright 2005-2011 © CAIR Chicago. Questions or Comments, Email

    Site Designed by