September 16, 2010


An American face of Islam: As the spotlight continues to be thrown on relations between Muslims and non-Muslims, one group is trying hard at myth-busting. (Jane O'Brien, 9/16/10, BBC News)

"It is one of the most dangerous myths circulating in American society - that Muslim Americans and Muslims in general do not condemn terrorism and that we do not take a stand on this. It's absolutely false," says Mr Beutel.

"We have been extremely vocal in condemning terrorism, which is evident if you look at the phenomenon of home-grown terrorism. Al-Qaeda's home-grown terrorists have a near perfect track record of failing in almost every single terrorist attack - because the only people they're able to recruit now are idiots."

A lack of resources is part of the problem for groups trying to promote understanding, says ISNA's Sarah Thompson, 27, and a recent convert to Islam.

"When we have so many different community needs - such as helping children who face discrimination at school - our resources are often overwhelmed," she says. "But we are now trying to work with different organisations to co-ordinate our message."
Group of Muslims The group blames the media for some of the negative ideas about Muslims

Mr Saleh Williams says individual Muslim Americans also have a responsibility to make their voices heard.

"Those who have a positive perception of Muslims and Islam are those who actually know a Muslim. So it puts the imperative on individual Muslims to get out and be more pro-active in their community," he says.

Mr Hijji believes much of the opposition to Muslims in America has been exacerbated by ongoing tensions over immigration.

"There is always a cultural barrier when you have immigrant parents and I think that has more to do with race than faith," he says.

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Posted by Orrin Judd at September 16, 2010 6:49 PM
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