Wednesday, December 09, 2015

not even gonna lie, I'd mix it up for rula jebreal on a train...,

fp |  In late November, the nonpartisan, Washington-based Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) released a survey showing that 56 percent of Americans now believe that Islam is at odds with America’s values and way of life. At the same time, however, PRRI has previously noted that seven out of 10 Americans have rarely or ever interacted with a Muslim, suggesting that their perceptions of Islam are driven entirely by media and political conversations about the religion. And that conversation has turned increasingly ugly, as the race for the Republican presidential nomination devolves into a frenzy of xenophobic bullying of vulnerable and underrepresented minorities.

The trend emerged with front-runner Donald Trump’s outrageous smears that cast Mexican immigrants as thieves, rapists, and drug dealers. The Republican Party’s rabid attentions soon shifted, with both Trump and fellow contender Ben Carson striving to outdo each other’s blood libels against American Muslims. On Dec. 7, Trump went so far as to issue a call to temporarily bar all Muslims from entering the United States, and he has voiced his support for a federal database to track American Muslims. He and his colleagues have not confined their bullying to those two groups. African-American Black Lives Matter activists, Jewish victims of the Holocaust, providers of health-care services (including abortion) to low-income women, even Americans with disabilities — all have been singled out for derision and abuse in a veritable war on the marginalized, declared by a reckless and cynical cohort of politicians. They’re hardly ignorant of the fact that, by spewing dangerous lies and stoking ignorant fears, they’re fueling the fires of prejudice, hate, and violence. They simply don’t seem to care.

When a couple of Trump supporters in Boston beat up and urinated on a homeless Mexican man, the candidate defended the perpetrators. “They love this country and they want this country to be great again,” he said. “They are passionate.” When his supporters beat a Black Lives Matter activist at a campaign event two weeks ago, he suggested the man “maybe … should have been roughed up.”