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If you haven't been watching CNN's series "God's Warriors"...you should be. Tonight at 9PM Eastern, Christiane Amanpour considers Muslim radicals, last night it was Jewish radicals, Thursday night it's Christian radicals.
Many people have talked about how American Muslims are not as radicalized as Muslims in other countries. It has been said that Muslims in America are more assimilated into our culture and are generally better educated which has meant less radicalization and extremism.
Well it looks like if Americans keep up what we've been doing the last 5-6 years, all that will change. What have we been doing? Stuff like this.....
Last year at Christmastime, Rehan Seyam(pictured above), a Muslim living in New Jersey, went to pick up some things at a local Wal-Mart. Seeing her distinctive traditional Muslim head covering called a "hijab," a man in the store, addressing her directly, sang "The 12 Days of Christmas" using insulting lyrics about terrorism and Osama bin Laden.
She was stunned.
"Do I look like a terrorist to you?" Seyam said she asked the man.
According to Seyam, the man replied, "What else does a terrorist look like?"
Such stories are not altogether uncommon for Muslim Americans. According to a recent poll by the Pew Research Center, 53 percent of Muslims living in America said it has become more difficult to be a Muslim in the United States since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Fifty-one percent said they are "very worried" or "somewhat worried" that women wearing the hijab are treated poorly, according to the poll.
A simple headscarf generally used by women to hide the hair from view, the hijab has become so controversial among some that several countries have banned or considered banning Muslim women from wearing them in public places. Link
It's all the same, really. Color of skin, sexual orientation, religious head scarves.....it's called intolerance based on ignorance and fear of the "other". It's preached by Messianic Decider's, spreading even more ignorance by stating "we" are good and "they" are evil.
In the CNN piece the question, "What else does a terrorist look like?", reminds me of the "blacks all look the same" hatefulness I heard in my younger days and still hear occasionally today.
Are Americans so ignorant, so oblivious to what we're doing, that we will go blindly down the path of intolerance of Muslims, creating an extremism problem here in America where none previously existed?
The answer to that question is still a work in progress but if bigoted screechers like Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh keep up their daily feeding of the prone-to-be-hatemongers-and proud-to-be-ignorant group, as I'm sure they will, it won't be long before we find out.