At least five Islamic center mosques have been burned to the ground or badly damaged in just seven weeks across the United States.
The Islamic Center of Lake Travis in Austin, Texas; the Islamic Center of Eastside in Bellevue, Washington; the Islamic Center of Victoria in Victoria, Texas; the Islamic Society of Santa Barbara in Goleta, California; and the Daarus Salaam Mosque in Tampa, Florida, all caught fire in just two months.
Authorities have ruled at least three of the five fires as arson. However, investigations into the cause of the fire at Islamic Center of Lake Travis and Daarus Salaam Mosque still remain open.
Across the country, more mosques have been desecrated or vandalized.
The incidents to the Muslim community come amid increase fear about minority religious groups in the country. Ever since President Donald Trump won the presidency, there has been a marked increase in bomb threats, vandalism and desecration of Jewish synagogues, community centers, schools and cemeteries.
“Donald Trump’s campaign and victory has emboldened people on the radical right or people who simply hate certain minority groups to act,” said Mark Potok, a senior fellow at the Southern Poverty Law Center. “They feel that their views have been legitimized by the man who is president of the United States.”
As of now, Trump has yet to respond to the mosque fires.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters, Mohammad Khursheed