These are difficult times for American Muslims, as anecdotal reports suggest terror fears are sparking a backlash. Trends are worrying. According to one tally, there were 38 U.S. anti-Islamic attacks in since the Paris terrorism. The trend was also bad last year, with the FBI reporting hate crimes decreased for all categories of victims except Muslims. The last month was especially troubling. Vandals tore up pages of the Quran and left it covered with feces at a mosque in Pflugerville, Texas. An Indiana University student allegedly attacked a Muslim woman at a café, choking her and removing her scarf. In Grand Forks, N.D., a Somali business was firebombed after it was defaced with Nazi-like symbols. A severed pigs’ head was tossed at a Philadelphia mosque from a passing pickup truck.
The Islamic Center of Fredericksburg, 65 miles south of Washington, D.C., is not exempt. When the protestor shouted, “Every Muslim is a terrorist!” at the community meeting in late November, other attendees cheered. Soon after, flyers appeared at the local mall, rallying people to fight the mosque’s building project. “No Jihad in Fredericksburg!!” the signs read. “Do we want their Jihad and bloodshed in our streets? NO! … There is no way of knowing how many ISIS agents will be hiding among them!”
No one supports anti-Muslim hate crimes. But what was a spectacularly bad month for American Muslims, with 38 attacks since Paris, is lower that an average month for American Jews.
Here is a list of 42 antisemitic attacks in the US since the Paris massacre:
- November 13: Radio show taken off air for claiming Jews killed Jesus and Holocaust was exaggerated
- November 15: ‘Zionists out of CUNY!’ ‘Long Live the Intifada!’ Chanted at CUNY student protest at Hunter
- November 16th: Antisemitic stickers at the University of Central Florida. One sticker had a Star of David and the words "1%" and "Bankers" underneath. The second sticker had a Nazi swastika depicted on a flag.
- November 16: People throw eggs at religious Jews
- November 16: Muslim NYC cabbie attacks Jewish passenger
- November 18: antisemitic opposition to housing project according to Howell NJ mayor
- November 23: Man shouts at Jews on Los Angeles street: “Go back to Auschwitz, you filthy Jews!”
- November 24: Antisemitic letters sent to Spring Valley homeowners
- November 25: Suspect shouts 'Jews should go back to Auschwitz,' assaults man
- November 25: Threatening letter against Jewish school
- November 25: New York Ex-cop reveals shocking antisemitic tapes
- November 26: City leader says he experienced anti-Semitism after synagogue vote
- November 26: Swastika drawn on LaPlata Hall students’ door
- December 1: Men stop car to shout “Fuck you, Jews” at 44-year-old and his sons
- December 1: A Jewish man was threatened with a knife whilst walking in New York, attacker shouted "Jew"
- December 12: >Jewish bookstore manager assaulted outside Manhattan shop
- December 3: Antisemitic assault in Brooklyn
- December 4: Hateful graffiti targeted towards North Austin Jewish community
- December 4: A man yelling anti-Jewish slur tries to enter synagogue
- December 4: Swastika found on Jewish man's truck in parking lot in Denver
- December 6:FBI busts teen buying machine guns to ‘execute’ Jews
- December 7: Chabad Lubavitch synagogue menorah stolen, vandalized night before Hanukkah
- December 7: A man in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania reportedly approached a Jewish family at a kosher restaurant and said to their 5-year-old child: “You filthy Jews, I’m going to kill all of you."
- December 8: Menorah in NYC knocked over, damaged
- December 9: Swastikas carved into dorm room door at Rowan University
- December 12: A string of arson attacks appearing to target property owned by Bukharian Jews in the Forest Hills neighborhood
- December 11: Menorah vandalized, happy Hanukkah sign stolen from park in Brooklyn
- December 12: Menorah in suburban Chicago vandalized
- December 13: Man nearly ran over child, made threats against Jews outside Kosher restaurant
- December 13: Five men accused in Church, Synagogue attack plot
- December 14: Antisemitic notes left at Cooper City (FL) homes
- December 15: This Costco lady had some impressive antisemitic remarks while making smoothie samples
- December 16: Rabbi receives antisemitic messages after he asked to remove a tree
- December 16: NYPD seeks man who punched Hasidic Jew in the head & threw his hat, yarmulke down
- December 18: Threatening note with antisemitic graffiti found at woman’s bathroom in Mount Sinai Hospital
- December 18: Man makes antisemitic statements to Lakewood resident, breaks his car headlight
- December 20: Antisemitic incident in Framingham high locker room
- December 21: A comment on an open letter written by an East Ramapo school board member echoes Adolf Hitler’s “Final Solution” for the Jews.
- December 24: Jewish temple vandalized with swastika in Olympia, WA
- December 24: Orthodox Jew denied federal security clearance because of relatives in Israel
- December 24: Antisemitic graffiti, multiple swastikas discovered outside public school
- December 24: Man punches Jewish student in Brooklyn, says "I don't like Jewish people"
There is a more subtle kind of bigotry at work, too. Most of the people who were attacked for being Jewish wore identifiable Jewish clothing, meaning that they are religious. But while the media is going out of its way to mention how terrible it is when identifiable Muslims are being attacked, there seems to be an idea that religious Jews are not "normal" Jews and the normal ones who are not easily distinguished from any other American are in no danger, only the fanatics who insist on wearing kippot or black hats or visible tzitzit or payos.
A Muslim woman who wants to wear a hijab must be protected but a Jewish man who wants to wear a long black coat is not someone the media wants its readers to identify with. If he gets punched, it's sort of natural.
The media wants readers to identify with fears of Muslims, showing how they are as American as the next person (read the entire Time article) but no one ever writes about the fears of identifiable Jews or how they are just as American as anyone else.
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