Bin Laden’s Death May Ease anti-Muslim Sentiment
By Raja Abdulrahim & Mitchell Landsberg


A news story in the Los Angeles Times of May 2 portrays the feelings of Muslims on Osama’s death. “The reactions reflected unalloyed joy and deliverance: It was ‘double good news,’ a ‘victorious day,’ the dawn of ‘a new era.’ These were the voices of Muslim American leaders and scholars, for whom the news of Osama bin Laden’s death came bundled with an extra ribbon of relief.

“American Muslims have kind of been in a kettle, a boiling kettle, and the fire has been this terrorism,” said Ihsan Bagby, an associate professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Kentucky. “Hopefully, the demise of Qaeda and this terrorist philosophy will put out the fire.”

For all that hope, there were those who said Monday that it was too early to tell whether bin Laden’s assassination by US forces would unshackle the American Muslim community from associations in the public mind with extremism. ...

Some other Muslim American leaders expressed skepticism that bin Laden’s death would change the way Muslim Americans are viewed by the wider culture.

“Realistically speaking, I don’t think we will be witnessing any real change in the anti-Muslim rhetoric in America,” said Hussam Ayloush, executive director of the LA branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, “because it is being pushed by those who use deliberate misinformation, and that is not going to disappear with the disappearance of bin Laden.”

But he applauded Obama’s statement about the US not being at war with Islam and called it a huge step in the right direction. Courtesy Los Angeles Times, May 2, 2011

SEE: Bin Laden’s death may east anti-Muslim sentiment in the US.





Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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