For the last two years the volume has risen on populist voices, culminating in a victory for President Trump. The day after his election, this is how "rude" New Yorkers treated one Muslim-American woman.
When she was nine years old, Amani Al-Khatahtbeh heard her first racial slur, from the mouth of one of her classmates. It was 2001, and 9/11 had just shocked and shattered the US's sense of safety. "I grew up through the worst forms of bullying, through an extremely low self-esteem, and it was very difficult for me to formulate who I was and what my identity meant to me," she says. So what was it like, 15 years later, being an American-Muslim woman in New York the day after President Trump was elected? Braced for the worst, Al-Khatahtbeh left her home and under the grey mood and matching skies of the day, was surprised by warm smiles and kind gestures from strangers in New York City. Even compliments on her headscarf. They were tiny exchanges that signified to her that there was a common understanding, and that hope was where it always has been — in other people.
Times of great fear can lead to greater oppression. For Amani Al-Khatahtbeh, the prospect of a Muslim registry is obscene, and it's slippery slope to something much worse.
The media and politicians in the west are playing a dangerous game of word association, says founder and editor-in-chief of muslimgirl.com Amani Al-Khatahtbeh. In fact, it’s not so much a game as it is the dehumanizing of an entire population. By linking terrorism with Islam, and Islam with terrorism an impossible generalization is forged in the public consciousness that is extremely dangerous. It incites hate within institutions and within individuals, from the largest scale to the smallest.