Fierce media campaigns targeting the Muslim community and their faith in the United States are prompting young Muslims to shy away from being associated with their religion.
“Stuff they see in the media kind of tells them maybe that something is wrong with them, or that because they’re Muslim they’re somehow singled out,” Omar Mahmood, an adviser for the Muslim Youth of North America, was quoted as saying by Arizona Public Media.
Mahmoud, a clinical psychologist, opines that some teens are afraid from being identified as Muslims over the campaigns targeting their religion.
“Many might feel that being a good Muslim or being a spiritual, religious Muslim is somehow contradictory to being a productive and contributing member of American society.”
US Muslims, estimated at between six to seven million, have been sensing growing hostility in recent months.
Anti-Muslim sentiments sharply grew over plans to build a mosque near the 9/11 site in New York, resulting in attacks on Muslims and their property.
Worse still, hostile rhetoric by Republican candidates against Islamic Shari`ah has led to demonize the sizable minority.
According to a report by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the University of California, Islamophobia in the US is on the rise.
A US survey has also revealed that the majority of Americans know very little about Muslims and their faith.
A recent Gallup poll, however, found 43 percent of Americans Nationwide admitted to feeling at least “a little” prejudice against Muslims.
Lawmakers in at least 20 states have introduced proposals forbidding local judges from considering Shari`ah when rendering verdicts on issues of divorces and marital disputes.
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