AMP Report - November 12, 2016
Post-election spate of hate crimes against
Muslims worse than post-9/11
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali
"What may seem like a dramatic rise in the number of hate harassment and hate incidents happening across the country in the wake of Tuesday's general election is not in anyone's imagination," the USA today quoted experts as saying.
Melanie Eversley of USA Today wrote on Saturday (11/12) there indeed has been a spike in the number of reports of such incidents, according to representatives for two organizations that track such occurrences. A representative for one group, in fact, said the rise appears to be even worse that what was took place immediately after the terror attacks in 2001.
"Since the election, we've seen a big uptick in incidents of vandalism, threats, intimidation spurred by the rhetoric surrounding Mr. Trump's election," Richard Cohen, president of the Southern Poverty Law Center in Montgomery, Ala., told USA TODAY. "The white supremacists out there are celebrating his victory and many are feeling their oats," Cohen said.
On Friday (11/10) a Muslim woman was forced to remove her hijab after a man threatened to set her on fire with a lighter near the University of Michigan campus in Ann Arbor. Ann Arbor police said the man approached the victim and demanded for her to remove her hijab, or he would set her on fire. The woman complied and was able to leave the area. Witnesses say the man is a white male, 20-30 years old, average height, athletic build, had bad body odor and was thought to be intoxicated.
Less than 48 hours since Donald Trump became the president-elect, reports of Islamophobia are already on the rise, according to Think Progress.
Attacks on Muslim Americans were already high before Trump clinched enough electoral college delegates to win the presidency on Tuesday night, with hate group experts attributing the uptick to his candidacy. But the situation appears to have worsened since his win.
Here are just a few examples of Muslim American reporting instances of harassment and assault this week.
At New York University, Muslim students reportedly awoke to discover that the door to their prayer room had been defaced with the word “Trump!”
Wednesday morning at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering, Muslim students found "Trump" scrawled on the door of their prayer room, realizing that our campus is not immune to the bigotry that grips America. We awoke on November 9th to a chilling wakeup call. And as we open our eyes and start to move and organize in the face of these new realities, we ask for your support.
At San Jose State University, a campus-wide alert sent to students reported that a woman had her hijab forcibly removed by a “fair skinned male” with such force that it “caused the victim to lose her balance and choked her.”
According to campus police, a student at the University of Louisiana, Lafayette, was beaten, robbed, and had her hijab ripped off by two men, one of whom wore a white “TRUMP” hat. The suspects reportedly beat the woman with “something metal.”
A Muslim woman in Albuquerque, New Mexico claimed on Twitter that a Trump supporter tried to pull off her hijab at her university. She said school officials are now investigating the incident.
A Muslim woman reported that a woman verbally and physically attacked her at a Walmart, tugging at her hijab while saying that such headwear “is not allowed anymore.” She then reportedly suggested the woman hang herself.
The USA Today report said: The incidents, some that bring up memories of the Jim Crow era, continued into Friday.
"In Philadelphia, the University of Pennsylvania issued a statement saying it was working to find the source of racist messages sent to black freshmen, and in Syracuse, N.Y., a group of pickup trucks - one draped with the Confederate flag - drove through an anti-Trump rally. In Columbus, Ohio, a man banged on the car window while a Muslim woman was driving, her children and elderly parents with her, and told her, "C--t, you don't belong in this country," according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations, based in Washington.
"All those were added to the list of incidents that included black children being told to get to the back of a bus and Latino children being taunted about the wall that Trump promised to build between Mexico and the United States.
"The SPLC, which tracks hate crimes, says it has logged more than 200 complaints since the election, and while it could not provide a figure for the average number of complaints it takes in each day, Cohen assured that the number is much larger than what is typical. Anti-black and anti-immigrant incidents are generating the highest numbers followed by anti-Muslim incidents, Cohen said. Part of the reason it is happening is that hate group leaders are encouraging members to intimidate people, according to Cohen."
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, the largest Muslim civil advocacy group has also reported an increase in complaints made to its offices throughout the nation. The Washington-based Muslim civil rights group is asking Muslim community members who believe their rights have been violated to contact local police and CAIR's Civil Rights Department.
Abdus Sattar Ghazali is the Chief Editor of the Journal of America (www.journalofamerica.net) email: asghazali2011 (@) gmail.com