From Minneapolis to Los Angeles to Detroit and Chicago, hear from the ordinary people targeted by anti-Muslim rhetoric
The race for the Republican presidential nomination has seen some extraordinary anti-Muslim rhetoric. Donald Trump called for a “total and complete shutdown” of the country’s borders to Muslims. In the aftermath of the Brussels attacks on 22 March, Ted Cruz said that law enforcement should “patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods”. The Guardian asked Muslim-Americans from neighborhoods around the United States to tell us what impact this focus on their communities has had as they go about their lives.
Jalal Baig, Chicago: ‘There is no incubator of terrorism here. There are only Americans’
I have had the privilege of spending my formative years in Chicago, which has many neighborhoods that serve as a microcosm of the Muslim world. Whether shopping on the frenetic streets of Devon Avenue alongside South Asians or consuming shwarma sandwiches in the hospitality of Arabs in Bridgeview, you will find individuals who have not only embraced their identities as Muslim-Americans but also the accompanying responsibilities.
Farhana Shahid, Los Angeles, California: ‘I especially fear for what will happen to my children’
I am deeply offended and concerned by Senator Ted Cruz’s plan to “intensify surveillance of Muslim neighborhoods”. I live in one of the neighborhoods that he would want to target: the South Bay area of Los Angeles. I have been residing in my community for 25 years. I am a Muslim woman, an immigrant from Pakistan and a mother of three children. I have been a citizen of this country for 20 years.
Since 9/11 we have seen intense scrutiny of my community and harassment of my family members. My husband drives a taxi in Los Angeles and on numerous occasions has been subjected to discriminatory and racist language. Last year my son was travelling on a buddy pass on United Airlines and was treated rudely and in a demeaning way by the gate agent.
My children are all born in the United States. I worry about their future, but comments by our leaders and potential future presidents worry me the most. I especially fear for what will happen to my children if Senator Cruz or people like him become the president of United States.
Read more here.
Source: The Guardian