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WHY IS ISLAMOPHOBIA GROWING IN THE WEST? SPECIAL REPORT

13:35 29 December 2019 Author :  

Islamophobia and the misconceptions about Muslims are not a new phenomenon in the west. Perhaps, the Crusades became one of its prime reasons. However, later events that followed in history also strengthened this western tendency against Islam.

In recent times, the western disapproval of Islam has grown, especially in the wake of 9/11.

Islamophobia exists not only among the western citizens but also among the state institutions of various countries of the west.

It is essential to find out the causes of this offensive western outlook towards Islam and Muslims from different aspects.

The first misunderstanding is that usually, the western people tend to believe in the stereotypical conceptions related to Islam, often without any research.

The global media has also played a slanting role to highlight the medieval grey areas attached to religion, like aiming at the soft underbelly. Subsequently, a cultural war has followed in interpreting religion in a certain way.

These sources tend to shape opinions based on prejudices against Islam and its followers. The most unfortunate aspect of this part and parcel is the linking of Islam with terrorism.

Somewhat similar kind of prejudice was successfully shaped against the negroes that they are dangerous people.

Another kind of fear was effectively created against immigrants. Gradually, the impression that the Muslims migrants could subvert the western culture was internalized.

However, it is not only the Muslims, who are facing this inhospitality by the west, but the migrants belonging to the other faiths also have to face the same troubles.

At different times in the US, immigrants such as Irish, Chinese, Italian, Mexican, and Japanese had to face racial and cultural prejudices. However, in recent times, Muslims and Islam are the exclusive targets.

The lack of knowledge is another reason for this growing Islamophobia. According to research, a majority of Americans do not know about Islam and Muslims. Only 38% of Americans ever met a Muslim. Similarly, only 57% of US citizens scarcely know about Islam.

Now, Islamophobia and a hate campaign against the Islamic faith has turned into a proper industry, which is financially aided by donors opposed to Islam.

According to research, $205 million worth of funds were given to the anti-Islamic research institutions in 2013. These institutions had significantly grown in numbers from five in 2010 to 114 in 2018.

Besides conventional media, Hollywood has also played a huge role in spending hatred against Islam. Hate literature against Muslims has increased following 9/11. For example, it has risen to 80% in the major newspapers like ABC and CBS. While on FOX TV, it has increased to 60%.

Similarly, the reporting of terrorist acts has also a particular bias against Muslims. For example, the terror-related incidents that included Muslims were publicized 3.5 times more than those terrorist acts that included non-Muslims.

Also, in Indian movies, Muslim men are depicted as character-less psychopaths and terrorists, while Muslim women are shown living a miserable life in servitude.

According to an analysis, the Muslims are depicted negatively in at least one thousand movies and tv shows.

This negative projection has reflected in the US, where, according to a survey, only 15% of Americans have a favorable view of Islam. While 57% of them think Islam threatens their culture and values.

Due to this prejudice against Islam, the Muslim emigrants have to bear the brunt of this unfavorable projection of their faith. It affects their quality of life, and the shadows of the general misfortune haunt them wherever they go from taking jobs to buying homes.

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