Are American Muslims Safer or Not in the Wake of Bin Laden’s Death?

The death of Osama bin Laden has brought out a range of emotions in people, including some cheerleading that many are finding inappropriate.

So it comes as little surprise that in the wake of the news, another reaction is coming out of the woodwork — a renewed showing of threats against American Muslims.

As a precaution, many cities went on heightened alert, adding additional security to public areas in anticipation of potential retaliatory attacks.  No actions were reported in that arena, but in Minnesota a report of hate mail at an Islamic center made the news instead.

Via Patch:

“I think there’s going to be a short period of time where we’re not going to be as safe,” said Meri Ayoub, who has been a secretary for the Islamic Center of Minnesota in Fridley for 10 years. “The words, ‘Islam’ and ‘Muslims’ are back in the media, and they have polarized people again.”

Ayoub said she wasn’t surprised to arrive at work Monday to find five hate emails in reaction to Bin Laden’s death. One of the emails, with the subject line of “Bin Laden,” said, “I know that the USA will defeat the Muslims worldwide and on our own soil … death to Mohammad and to Islam!”

Overall, American Muslims are being hopeful that the tension surrounding them will abate as time passes.

Muhammad Cheab says he hopes that now Americans will see Muslims in a new light. “We’re good American citizens,” he says. “We pay our taxes and live like everyone else does and we’re proud to live here.”

Cheab hopes bin Laden’s death will take the heat off Muslims here. Feisal Abdul Rauf, the imam who stepped into controversy by trying to locate a mosque near ground zero, believes it will do just that.

“I think that this is a turning point,” he says. “There’s still an enormous amount of work to be done. But there’s no doubt, in the American perception this has helped a lot to bring closure.”

Will the death of bin Laden mean that the country’s growing Islamophobia may come to an end?  Or is it still expected to be the centerpoint of the conservative reelection campaign in 2012?

 

photo from wikimedia commons

Love This? Never Miss Another Story.

54 comments

Habibi Matrimonials

Good Job Jami, some smart people in the crowd-Alhamdollilah!

Jami Winn
Jami Winn4 years ago

Osama Bin Laden's death and Americans hatred toward him had nothing NOTHING to do with him being Muslim. It had to do with him being a terrorist and if I could have been there to shoot him too I would have. Quite frankly I'm just glad he is dead and there ain't nothing we can do to bring him back and even if we could I doubt anyone would want him back. He should have been hunted down and killed 10 years ago but I still satisfied.

Hope S.
Hope Sellers4 years ago

Bin Laden's death means a new leader for the fanatic Muslims. We don't know what that will mean.
We have our own home grown fanatics and they are not all Muslims. Too many are racists, against any who are not white, straight, or the same fundamentalist religion. What can we do about them?

Paula B.
Paula B.4 years ago

Alexandra you said: It is sad that people use occasions such as this to hurt other people and to parade their religious intolerance.' I agree with you. Why do so many Americans fuel the fire? Don't you have enough of this hate and fear. By the way the Media in Europe are showing lots of Americans rejoicing over Bin Ladens death. It doesn't look very peaceful nor innocent. Do you like that? Hopefully not.

Thor H.
Thor H.4 years ago

The Main thing we hear from Muslims in the West is "yes but".

Bernadette P.
Berny p.4 years ago

Safer or not at least it is one terrorist less and that ...IS GOOD!

Julie Dawson
Julie D.4 years ago

It would help the moderate muslim community greatly if they ever once came out and decried the horrible things being done in the name of Islam by extremeist factions and made it clear that that did not agree with or support these things. However that has NEVER happened yet to my knowledge here on American soil, nor anywhere else on the globe that I am aware of.

Elisabeth M.
lis Gunn4 years ago

To ryan b.: One person's terrorist is another's freedom fighter. And you make the mistake of thinking that Muslims are either for or against. A bit like the question "Have you stopped beating your wife? Yes or no." There are millions of people (including Muslims) who do not condone murder. Yet your previous president started two wars. In Afganistan, the Taliban, supported by America, fought the Soviets for years and yet now the self same Taliban is the enemy. The "democratically" elected government in Afganistan has been shown to be corrupt and warlords are still in positions of power. How many Muslims have been killed by US forces in Iraq?

Sadly successive US governments believe they have some God given right to interfere in the Middle East, bringing death and destruction wherever they are. When America doesn't like the government of a foreign country it organises "regime change".

The anti-Muslim feeling is obviously alive and thriving in the US (and elsewhere) but then some Americans always have to have someone or something to hate.

The numbers of wars, conflicts and deaths that have occurred, and are occurring in the name of religion are countless. In Gandhi' s words "God has no religion"

By the way, I am not a Muslim but respect their right to live.

Linda K.
Linda K.4 years ago

I would also like to clarify that Muslims have spoken out against terrorism. Islamic organizations have occasionally held press conferences condemning certain acts. But none of these renunciations have been reported by the mainstream media.

Linda K.
Linda K.4 years ago

I am a Muslim, an American-born convert. My mother is also American born and bred and not a Muslim. We were talking about this a couple days ago and neither one of us can understand why Bin Laden's death should cause Americans to lash out against Muslims. Could someone please explain that?