Thursday, October 16, 2008

Campbell Brown Asks the Underlying Question

We've all cringed at the erroneous and mean-spirited assumption by those wanting create dissention and stir racist/xenophobic feelings that Sen. Barack Obama is an Arab or of Muslim faith. But what does that say about the general perception of Arabs and Muslims in our country? Kudos to CNN's Campbell Brown who broached the subject on the air earlier this week.

"When did Arab and Muslim being dirty words, the equivalent of dishonorable or radical?

Whenever this gets raised, the implication is that there's something wrong with being an Arab-American or a Muslim. And the media is complicit here, too. We have been all way too quick to accept the idea that calling someone Muslim is a slur.

I feel like I'm stating the obvious here, but, apparently, it needs to be said. There is a difference between radical Muslims who support jihad against America and Muslims who want to practice their religion freely and have normal lives, like everybody else.

There are more than 1.2 million Arab-Americans and about 7 million Muslim Americans, former Cabinet secretaries, members of Congress, successful business people, normal, average Americans from all walks of life. These are the people that are being maligned here every time this happens. And we can only imagine how this conversation plays out in the Muslim world.

We can't tolerate this ignorance, not in the media, not on the campaign trail. Of course he's not an Arab. Of course he's not a Muslim, but, honestly, it shouldn't matter."

No comments:

Post a Comment