Jihad Against Islam

America’s right wing is on a witch hunt, and they’re tying Muslims to the stake

| January-February 2012

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    Zina Saunders / www.zinasaunders.com

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Rarely has the United States seen a more reckless and bare-knuckled campaign to vilify a distinct class of people and compromise their fundamental civil and human rights than the recent rhetoric against Muslims.

It would also be hard to imagine a more successful campaign. Since the beginning of Barack Obama’s presidency in 2009, an astonishing number of people have turned into a political wolf pack, convinced that 0.6 percent of the U.S. population is on the verge of trampling the Constitution and imposing an Islamic, Shariah-guided caliphate in its place. Like the communists that an earlier generation believed to be hiding behind every rock, infiltrated “Islamist” operatives today are said to be diabolically preparing for a forcible takeover.

Recent news reports strongly suggest a spike in anti-Muslim hate crimes. In May 2010, for example, a bomb exploded at an Islamic center in Jacksonville, Florida. In August, a man slashed the neck and face of a New York taxi driver after finding out he was a Muslim. Four days later, someone set fire to construction equipment at the future site of an Islamic center in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. In March 2011, a radical Christian pastor burned a Koran in Gainesville, Florida, leading to deadly riots in Afghanistan that left at least 20 people dead.

The American public psyche has undergone a subtle but profound metamorphosis since 2001, moving from initial rage at the 9/11 mass murder to fear of another devastating attack by Muslim extremists to, most recently, a more generalized fear of Islam itself. That evolution from specific concerns to general stereotyping is the customary track of racism and xenophobia—and those inclined to bigotry may have found their perfect bogeyman in Muslims.

Muslims are predominantly non-white. They practice an unfamiliar religion with unusual rituals. They are a small population in this land, with a largely inconspicuous history. They are regarded by many as a military enemy of the United States. They are perceived as a threat to the American social and cultural fabric. They have few ideological allies outside their own number. Never before have all of these factors been arrayed against an American minority group. Muslims also have one uniquely debilitating characteristic: a sliver of global Muslim society willing to resort to terrorism. It’s a small sliver, but it doesn’t need to be large. If 99.9 percent of the world’s Muslims were firmly dedicated to peace and nonviolence, that would still leave hundreds of thousands posing a legitimate and very significant public danger. It took only 19 jihadist terrorists, after all, to kill 2,977 innocent people on 9/11.

And there has been serious terrorism from homegrown Muslims. The Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security reported in 2011 that there had been 161 terrorist plots involving Muslim Americans since 9/11, with 69 contemplating domestic targets. Eleven of those 69 carried out their attacks, killing 33 people. In addition, a 2007 Pew Research Center survey found that 15 percent of American Muslims under the age of 30 believed that suicide bombing could be justified.

Larissa Dahroug
2/16/2012 8:21:33 PM

This is a discussion that NEEDS to happen everywhere...just look at Syria! Thank you for raising this discussion, Mr. Steinback. I wrote about my thoughts on the Islamic Center mentioned on page three back when it was first getting press. I just went back and re-read my thoughts...still agree with them. Read them at this link: http://www.spatoochna.com/apps/blog/show/4542618-standing-on-the-side-of-freedom-standing-with-the-muslim-community-

Christopher Jones
2/16/2012 1:33:56 PM

it isnt islam. It is apathetic americans. The lazy the busy the incompetant, all of whom are letting both parties swing, spin, scare the (m)asses into control. Every day new laws are dreamed up to protect you from whatever you fear, from your local govt to the federal govt. Wake up it is nothing more than control how to control your population - FEAR.

Jen Steele
2/15/2012 5:03:56 PM

I can't believe there are no comments on this. Are we seriously going to continue to allow our own brand of extreme radicals terrorize a tiny segment of our population and possibly create another war. Let's try thinking for ourselves for a change. I know as Americans we are a bit out of practice, but we can do it.

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