Local view: Muslims must dispel growing fear of Islam

· United States
Authors

Source / Courtesy:  The News Tribune

By M. Imran Hayee: A professor and director of graduate studies at the University of Minnesota Duluth.

On the 10th anniversary of Sept. 11, what can Muslim-Americans do to help alleviate their fellow citizens’ growing fear of Islam?

Jihad!

No kidding. The true Islamic Jihad, in fact, goes hand in hand with alleviating the fears of Americans.

To find out why, let’s explore the origin of the problem first. Although many believe the events of Sept. 11, 2001, instantly shaped Americans’ perception of Islam, polls indicate Americans gradually developed their opinion of Islam during the past decade. Shortly after Sept. 11, only 14 percent believed Islam encouraged violence. A decade later, a Pew poll finds that 40 percent of Americans now believe Islam is more likely than any other religion to encourage violence.

What caused more Americans to negatively view Islam as time passed after Sept. 11?

Some blame the media.

According to a 2010 Time magazine poll, 62 percent of Americans claim to have never met a Muslim. Instead, Americans shape their views of Muslims from what they observe in the media. We all remember what happened during this past July 22 when America learned about the horrific massacre of nearly 70 innocent youths in Norway. Many of us heard that pundits from all major networks and prominent newspapers, including the New York Times and Washington Post, wrongly anticipated an al-Qaeda connection.

Read more:

2 Comments

Comments RSS
  1. Amtul Q Farhat

    Although Norway massacre was a horrific incident it has helped alleviate Islam phobia to some extent at least.
    Americans need to understands religions bit more closely since it is having effect on their politics as well.

  2. Abida Rehman

    Media has a strong influence on the public. However, it is also important to reach the ordinary person in order to inform them. You will be surprised how little knowledge they would have.on Islam

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: