American Muslims Fear Backlash If Eid Falls On 9/11

by
Sameera Ehteram
American Muslims are bracing themselves for the possibility of the Islamic holiday of Eid al-Adha falling on Sept. 11 this year.

A myriad of reactions to the news of Eid falling on 9/11 are flooding the internet — not many of them positive:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Millions of Muslims across the world are preparing to mark Eid–ul-Adha or the “feast of sacrifice.” Depending on the sighting of the moon, the event may fall on Sept. 11  the day the world as we knew it changed forever.

Community leaders across the United States have warned that some people may misinterpret the festivities as a celebration of the 9/11 attacks that killed almost 3,000 people.

It is unfortunate, but such is the atmosphere after a year of Donald Trump igniting such hatred and fears.

Read More: Trump Adviser Giuliani Wants Muslims To Wear Electronic Tags

New York is particularly susceptible. It will be exactly 15 years since the World Trade Centre towers came crumbling down, changing the fate of Muslims all over the world.

Hate crimes and Islamophobia has run rampant not only in NYC but across America since the fateful day and many innocent Muslims (and some who were mistaken as Muslims) have paid a heavy price for it.

Not long ago, a New York family with a Pakistani background filed a $50 million federal civil rights lawsuit against their 12-year-old special needs son’s school district, alleging authorities forced the disabled Muslim student to wrongly admit he is affiliated with ISIS.

He was relentlessly harassed and bullies by his peers who called him a terrorist and asked what he intended to “blow up next.” Given his learning disabilities, the middle school student was confused by their derision and eventually replied the school’s fence.

Amid the commotion, the school’s assistant principal, “under extreme duress,” coerced the boy to sign a written confession falsely stating he was a member of ISIS. School officials then searched his belongings and police were sent to search the boy’s home.

The kid believed a “terrorist” was someone who traveled around, mistaking the word with tourist.

Islamic community Centre

Ahmed Al Zubaidi, a driver from Iraq, recently captured another such an incident on his phone when his passenger lashed out at him for parking at a fast food restaurant instead of choosing to use the drive-thru.

He was punched in the chest by the woman who also yelled at him the incoherent comment, "Send this to your f****** friends in jihad!" She also added death threats, which were very clearly stated, such as, "I'll f***** kill you" and "…bury you before anyone knows that you're gone."

No where seems to be safe for Muslims — they are increasingly being kicked off flights for no apparent reason, their properties vandalized and get mercilessly harassed for their faith.

Read More: American Airlines Kicks Off Muslim Women Because Crew Felt ‘Unsafe’

It’s understandable under the circumstances that they feel apprehensive about the approaching event.

“Some people might want to make something out of that,” says Habeeb Ahmed, president of the Islamic Center of Long Island. He fears misunderstanding as well as incitement. “Look at these Muslims, they are celebrating 9/11,” he explains of possible reaction to a Sept. 11 Eid.

“Our community is like, ‘What are we supposed to do?’” wonders Linda Sarsour, executive director of the Arab American Association of New York.

“I should not have to think about that,” she added. “What am I supposed to tell my kids?”

Read More: Muslim Teen Responds To Islamophobia With Music And Dance
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