Remembering and reflecting

 Four generations of students ago, it was a clear Monday morning with no clouds in the sky in New York City, Arlington County, V.A., or Shanksville, P.A. By 11 that same morning, it became one of the grayest days in United States history.

On this day of collective mourning and remembrance, this board took time to reflect on the tragedy's legacy and its place within a larger timeline of American-Muslim relations.

1980

ABSCAM

FBI conducts a sting operation called ABSCAM (short for “Arab Scam”) in which FBI agents pose as wealthy Arabs to bribe politicians. 

1985

ADC Office Firebombed

American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee is firebombed in Washington, D.C., resulting in death of Arab-American activist Alex Odeh.

Attack on Islamic Institute in Dearborn 

Windows of the Islamic Institute in Dearborn, M.I., are broken. 

Vandalism in Dearborn

Anti-Arab sentiment grows in response to the US’s 1986 bombings on Libya, causing more Arab-American businesses to be vandalized in Dearborn, M.I. 

1990-1991: Persian Gulf War 

During the Persian Gulf War in the 1990s, there are reports of 119 serious hate crimes in 1991, including arsons, bombings and assaults.

1996

Following the mechanical failure explosion of TWA Flight 800, Council on Islamic Relations receives ten reports of anti-Muslim verbal harassment and threats of violence. 

2001Patriot Act

Patriot Act is passed following the 9/11 attacks, which has, according to the Washington Post, "led to the detention and deportation of thousands of Arabs and Muslims without due process."

War in Afghanistan

War in Afghanistan kills over 100,000 people since 2001, with the war still continuing today.

2003 No Fly List

No Fly List is created in response to 9/11, which is meant to prevent terrorists from flying in and out of the U.S. Countless Muslim-Americans have been wrongfully placed on the list.

Iraq War

Iraq War is officially underway, with over 500,000 deaths since 2003 on the pretense of weapons of mass destruction.

Abu Ghraib

Torture and humiliation at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq by U.S. military on Iraqi prisoners comes to light.

2015 Muslim Attacks in Chapel Hill, N.C.

Three Muslim students are shot and killed in their own homes in Chapel Hill. 

2017 Muslim Ban

President Trump calls for a Muslim ban from six Muslim-majority countries. Its scope and legitimacy will be heard by the Supreme Court in October.

In 2016, after the election of President Trump, Pew Research Center found that anti-Muslim assaults are at 9/11 levels. 

This list only scratches the surface on Islamophobia’s prevalence in the U.S. If we tried to include every Islamophobic attack or offense, this list would take up the entire newspaper. 

Anti-Muslim sentiment did not start with 9/11. It did not disappear under a president whose middle name was “Hussein.” It did not suddenly appear with the Trump presidency. And it is not going away after Trump’s term is over. 

Non-Muslims, it is not the job of Muslims to ask you for help. It is your job to be cognizant, aware and proactive in combating Islamophobia in all its forms.

Thanks for reading.

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