In U.S., are Muslims the new Jews?

Other immigrants, such as those from Germany, Italy, and Asia, often got the cold shoulder, too, but it was not as severe. The U.S. always has been a little bipolar on immigration — elated at the idea of a Land of Immigrants, but some of us not so keen when the new arrivals don’t look like us.

Muslims are the latest to arrive in numbers, and they carry the additional burden of being associated with terrorism. “Bad luck,” as with Japanese immigrants in California at the outbreak of World War II, observes Jacob Bender, executive director of the Philadelphia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. For Muslims, 9/11 created “a level of suspicion that was heretofore unknown to their community.” Bender happens to be Jewish.

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Travel ban drawing fire despite the tweaks

President Trump’s executive order “do-over,” derided by critics as “Muslim Ban 2.0,” is drawing fire despite the tweaks.

“Muslims still feel harassed, ridiculed, and persecuted in their traveling,” said Jacob Bender, director of the Philadelphia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

“Just recently, Muhammad Ali’s [Philadelphia-born] son was detained” and questioned about his religion, Bender said. “Religious screening should remain out of bounds in a multireligious, multiethnic society such as ours.”

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Local Lawyers Scrutinize Trump’s New Travel Ban

Ryan Houldin of the Council on American-Islamic Relations finds it ironic that the new order comes on the anniversary of the reviled Dred Scott decision that denied citizenship to African-Americans. “It’s very unfortunate that 160 years later we haven’t really learned any lessons, and we’re just targeting another group of people at this point in time,” Houldin said.

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