Today in Islamophobia

A daily list of headlines about Islamophobia
compiled by the Bridge Initiative

Each day, the Bridge Initiative aims to bring you the news you need to know about Islamophobia. This resource will be updated every weekday at approximately 11:00 AM EST.

Today in Islamophobia Newsletter

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17 May 2019

Today in IslamophobiaCoca-Cola and Adidas find themselves tangled up in the Uyghur crisis, as China readies itself to raze mosques in Xinjiang. An op-ed meditates on the fear lacing the Indian elections, another draws similarities between Hungary’s Orban and Trump. Our recommended read of the day is by Jason Stanley and David Beaver titled “Beware of Snakes, Invaders & other Fighting Words”. This, and more, below:


17 May 2019

Opinion | Beware of ‘Snakes,’ ‘Invaders’ and Other Fighting Words | Recommended Read

Do words really have power to change our behavior? The literature on marketing teaches us that rhetoric can have significant impact on attitudes. Here is one example: Asking people even purely hypothetical questions unconsciously shifts their subsequent preferences and behavior in often dramatic ways. Calling immigrants “invaders” has the effect of connecting practices one would employ against hostile intruders to immigrant groups. If one simultaneously advances the value system of nationalism, then the kind of practice one is recommending by using “invaders” to describe immigrants is violence. read the complete article

Our recommended read of the day

United States

17 May 2019

Opinion | A mosque was intentionally set on fire in the U.S. Why didn’t anyone hear about it?

Most mosque arsons go almost completely ignored. On Sunday, just a week into the holy month of Ramadan, the Diyanet Mosque of New Haven, Conn., was devastated by a two-alarm blaze. While the president of the mosque was immediately contacted by churches in meaningful solidarity that offered their facilities as temporary replacements, it is hard to find any significant coverage of the fire in large media outlets. read the complete article

17 May 2019

Reps. Tlaib and Omar challenge the trope of modest Muslim women

Rep. Rashida Tlaib and her freshman colleague Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), the first two Muslim women elected to Congress, were celebrated as part of the American dream in the Trump era. They have also drawn criticism for daring to challenge long-standing attitudes and positions on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in a climate of intolerance. But impatience with this administration’s arbitrary confrontation with democratic and constitutional norms has empowered them somewhat. They are boldly fighting back. read the complete article

17 May 2019

Opinion | Why President Trump and Hungary’s authoritarian leader are soulmates

It’s bad enough that Trump is fawning over a leader who has destroyed democracy in his country. What’s more alarming is that, as Cornstein’s overly honest comments suggest, Trump is trying to emulate Orban’s sinister example. Orbanism is authoritarianism for the media age: Instead of sending jackbooted thugs to haul away his opponents to concentration camps, the Hungarian prime minister uses more subtle measures — he has demonized immigrants, catered to anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim prejudices, corrupted the judiciary, bought off the media, co-opted civil society, harassed and intimidated critics, and rewarded his cronies by allowing them to feed at the government trough. Trump’s actions in the few days since Orban’s visit show how he is attempting to apply Orbanism to the United States. read the complete article


17 May 2019

Western Companies Get Tangled in China’s Muslim Clampdown

Adidas AG, Hennes & Mauritz AB, Kraft Heinz Co. , Coca-Cola Co. andGap Inc. are among those at the end of the long, often opaque supply chains that travel through China’s northwest region of Xinjiang. Residents there are routinely forced into training programs that feed workers to area factories, according to locals, official notices and state media. read the complete article

17 May 2019

The razing of mosques is the next step in China’s crackdown on Uyghur culture

Last week a joint report by the Guardian and Bellingcat revealed that since 2016 more than two dozen Islamic religious sites have been partially or totally demolished in Xinjiang, a western region in China whose largest ethnic group, the Uyghurs, are predominantly Muslim. Analysis of satellite imagery, corroborated by reports from local residents, shows that many mosques have had domes, minarets and gatehouses removed, while others have been razed completely. Several religious shrines, such as the one devoted to Imam Asim, which for centuries has attracted thousands of pilgrims, have also been demolished. It’s likely that many more religious sites have already met the same fate – this is a widespread state-directed campaign against any visible manifestation of Islamic belief in Xinjiang. read the complete article


17 May 2019

Australia vote: Concern about Islamophobia among smaller parties

The Islamic Council of Victoria says voters should carry out their research before casting their ballots and has sent out hundreds of how-not-to-vote cards to voters, naming the 10 parties about which it is most concerned. The Council says the parties named in its list, including Fraser Anning's Conservative National Party and the Australian Conservatives, all have anti-Muslim immigration policies. It says it was shocked at the response, with many voters unaware of the policies behind the parties. read the complete article

United Kingdom

17 May 2019

Opinion | This week the British establishment proved Islamophobia is alive and well

Martin Hewitt, chair of the National Police Chiefs Council, suggested that defining Islamophobia as “rooted in racism and… a type of racism that targets expressions of Muslimness or perceived Muslimness” is too broad. The police chief said the definition could cause confusion for officers enforcing it, be used to challenge legitimate free speech regarding “Islamic states”, and undermine counter-terrorism efforts. By the end of Wednesday, his leaked letter to the prime minister appeared to have done the trick, scuppering both Conservative party and UK government acceptance of the definition. Hewitt’s “concerns” ring hollow with anyone who has an inkling of what Muslims have been experiencing for decades. read the complete article


17 May 2019

Opinion | You know India’s democracy is broken when millions wait for election results in fear

Akhlaq died on the spot; Danish, who was preparing for the Indian administrative services, survived the lynching after two brain surgeries. In an interview published last year, an exasperated Danish asked our leaders: “You want to make India a Hindu country? Would you kill all the Muslims or turn them out of the country? Please tell us to what extent you would go to finish Muslims?” He added: “I’m very uneasy. I have a feeling that if the BJP comes back then something big will happen. I cannot say what it is. I feel as if something will break in our country and we will not be able to fix it.” Danish’s fear permeates life for all Muslims in India. In recent years, we have seen an explosion of ethnic and religious mob violence. This year’s election campaign is fanning the flames. read the complete article


17 May 2019

Austrian Muslims Defy Primary School Headscarf Ban at Constitutional Court

There were an estimated 700,000 Muslims living in Austria in 2017, or roughly 8 percent of the population, partly an outgrowth of the many Turks who came to Austria to work in the 1960s and 1970s and stayed on. Lawmakers from Austria's two ruling parties - Chancellor Sebastian Kurz's conservatives and the far-right Freedom Party - approved a bill including the headscarf measure late on Wednesday. The Freedom Party is outspokenly anti-Islam, while Kurz has said he wants to prevent Muslim "parallel societies" emerging that would be at odds with the mainly Catholic country's values. read the complete article

Today in Islamophobia, 17 May 2019 Edition


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