The “Greatest Weapon Muslims can use against America is America’s youth”, is the title of an editorial published in the Delaware County Daily Times online newspaper on Saturday. From the title one can presume the content of the article is extremely problematic. Statements that incite fear only divide Americans and increase Islamophobia, the irrational fear and hatred of Islam and Muslims.
The column makes numerous false assertions and typical fear mongering statements. For example, “The Muslim intent is to destroy America, the family system of equality between husband and wife, the core of American society and conservatism.” The author goes on to say, “Muslims do not enter America and its institutions in order to do constructive work, but in order to direct other Americans to destroy us from within.”
IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUESTED: (As always, be POLITE.)
After reading the entire editorial, you may find it silly, ignorant, and not worth responding to. It certainly is a product of ignorance, but ignorant speech can only be countered with true and informed speech, and lots of it. Moreover, the piece is reflective of not just one individual, but most likely a vast percentage of the population. A growing segment of Americans truly believes in the content of this column, resulting in an alarming rise in anti-Muslim sentiment across the country.
Remember the following:
- Keep your letter to no more than 150-250 words. Otherwise, ask to be a guest columnist.
- Be authoritative. If possible, speak on behalf of a local organization in which you are involved.
- Be passionate but do not stoop to the level of an Islamophobe.
- Offer a positive and reasonable solution.
- Speak from your personal experience as a Muslim American or an American who values inclusiveness.