Racism fueled by terrorism


ISIS has struck France, a hotel in Egypt, Bangladesh, and in California. Along with these attacks, citizens tried to retaliate on the situation by harming or even killing, innocent Muslims.  

I imagine that terrorists greatly enjoy the racism that has been fueled by recent attacks and is part of their motive, which is to have the rest of the world scared. We can’t be scared and give ISIS what they want. Isn’t that reason enough to stop spreading hate?

An important part of the fight against terrorism is not to give in to fear and allow it to change how we are living our lives. This will help because if we do, then we are  giving ISIS the power that they want.

There are good people throughout the world of all races and religions that have died from these attacks. Responding to the violence created by hate with more hate is never good, but definitely is not the answer when that hate is placed on another innocent person. It is a moral outrage to poorly treat another person, who is just as heartbroken by the terrorist activities, by calling them criminals by association, simply because of their nationality or religion.

In the wake of the shootings in San Bernardino, while there were many examples of bravery and heroism, most of the news was filled with stories of hatred and discrimination. I know that sadness sells more papers, but these acts are unforgivable. Innocent people were being persecuted simply for their choice of religion, but those people who are retaliating should know that Islam is a religion of peace.

According to the Pew Report, there are about 1.6 billion Muslims in the world of which ISIS is less than one percent according to counts by BBC News. It’s also important to note that  this extremist group includes non-Muslims and uses religion as an excuse for the terrible acts being committed.  Maybe some people need be reminded that freedom of religion is a constitutional right in the United States. The bigotry ranges from children being beaten up in school for wearing a hijab to presidential candidate, Donald Trump, proposing to place a ban on Muslims entering the United States to the Congressional block of Syrian refugees.

I am relieved that President Obama denounced the racist actions of some and rebuked the practice of viewing all followers of Islam as terrorists. “Freedom is more powerful than fear,” he said on Sunday in his Oval Office address. He urged the American people that, “We cannot turn against one another by letting this fight be defined as a war between America and Islam,” and reminded that “freedom is more powerful than fear.”

To those who have been racist and treating others differently as a result of this fear, I have faith that the President’s message will resonate and bring about change. We must all work together as a united front to defeat ISIS. Divided we are more vulnerable to further attacks, but as a nation united, standing up for each other, the United States will remain safe.