Monday, June 19, 2017

When Muslims are under threat: "Is it safe to pray?"

Religious freedom at its most fundamental is when people are threatened for peaceably practicing their faith.  And religious freedom is indeed under attack in the US and the UK....but the victims are not CHristians.

Two news stories today expose western Islamophobia in heartbreaking fashion.

In Virginia, a 17 year old girls was killed on her way home from evening prayer
Nabra was reportedly among four or five teenagers who had left the mosque in the early hours of Sunday. It was not unusual for worshippers to walk after nightfall in what is usually a safe neighbourhood.

A Fairfax county police statement said: “An investigation determined she was walking outside with a group of friends when they got into a dispute with a man in a car. It appears the suspect, Darwin A Martinez Torres, 22, of Sterling, got out of his car and assaulted the victim. Her friends could not find her and police were called to help.”
Her body was found, reportedly beaten to death.

In London, another case of a van driving on a sidewalk to mow people down--but this time, the targets were Muslim worshipers leaving their mosque.  The crowd caught the driver and the local imam reportedly protected him until the police arrived. 
SITE, the terrorism-monitoring group, said Monday white-supremacist organizations were celebrating the attack in Finsbury Park, while pro-ISIS groups used it to incite Muslims.
The Guardian adds,
A report by the Council on American-Islamic Relations found that anti-Muslim hate crime incidents rose sharply in 2015 and increased a further 44%, from 180 to 260, in 2016. Human rights groups have called on Donald Trump to be more forceful in speaking out against acts of violent intolerance.
An article in the Atlantic looks at the consequences for the community.
"It’s a really scary question to have to think about, to be honest—to even have to be in the state of mind where you have to ask the question, ‘Is it safe for me to go pray?'"
That, friends, is what religious persecution is.

No comments: