Recent terrorist attacks against Muslims in Canada underscored the necessity of addressing Islamophobia as a shared global Challenge.
The tragic incident at a defunct school in Kamloops, Canada, was the first wave. 215 children were found on the ground. The situation exacerbated days ago with a second wave.
A driver targeted a Muslim family using a pickup truck. The second wave occurred in London, Canada again, leaving four members of the family dead. A fifth one suffered serious injuries.
The assault in Ontario was hardly the first Islamophobic incident in Canada. The latest instance occurred in 2017 with a deadly shooting in Quebec. Six people lost their lives in a mosque. The list goes far too long.
Following the recent attacks, Muslim society in Canada began pushing for a national addressing of Islamophobia through a conference. There is no doubt that faith was main motivation of the attackers. The people requested a meeting of their representatives as well as politicians from all branches of administration.
A petition registered in a school in Ontario is urging the local administration in Canada to adopt active measures against Islamophobia. More than 19,000 people have signed the petition coordinated until Sunday Evening.
From Berlin to Tel Aviv, from Manchester to Brussels, the devastation of bias and violence against Muslims is evident. Nevertheless, the worldwide reaction to Islamophobia, so far, has ranged from apathy and ignorance to joy and support.
Canadian Prime Minister, in response to the terrorist assaults in Ontario, claimed that Islamophobia has nothing to do with the Canadian society. The Ontario’s executive office, however, has vetoed a legislation denouncing Islamophobia.
In the United Kingdom, the Conservative leaders have dismissed their pledge to conduct an impartial investigation in Islamophobia inside the party. Furthermore, Boris Johnson refused to apologize for many Islamophobic remarks he has made before and during his command in Number 10.
Muslim community across the world, in western countries in specific, can never live in a safe world unless Islamophobia is acknowledged on the first step and addressed in the second.
In a similar vein, leaders of other western countries, including the United States and France take gentle and ignorant position against Islamophobia. Furthermore, some independent investigations revealed that administrative agencies have had active role in facilitating or supporting the Islamophobic incidents.
The western administration’s conduct on special terrorist cases has exacerbated the anti-Muslim air in some societies. Besides, the trial condition of Islamophobic attackers has further encouraged the supporters and perpetrators of such moves.
Islamophobia in 21st Century
Islamophobia arose long before September 11, but it has become more common practice after it. In a 1997 study, the Runnymede Trust in the United Kingdom outlined 8 aspects of Islamophobia. Following 9/11, the institute issued another report coinciding the wars against Afghanistan and Iraq.
According to the studies, the United States has detected over 160 Muslim-American terrorist suspects and offenders in the ten years after 9/11. The number comprises only a trivial fraction of the hundreds of violent actions in US annually.
Nevertheless, the number 160 has been brought to the center of attention through the past decades. “An efficient system of government prosecution and media coverage brings Muslim-American terrorism suspects to national attention, creating the impression – perhaps unintentionally – that Muslim-American terrorism is more prevalent than it really is,” Gallup clarifies.
There are actual unfavorable views, biases, and negative stereotypes directed against Muslims in major Western cultures. Islamophobia manifests itself in these countries in form of “untrustworthy citizens”. The people openly express hostility towards Muslims, and find them as neighbors.
However, the popular conduct against Muslims varies in different time eras. It has direct relationship with administrative practice. Terrorism exists in the world in all kinds. Attributing terrorism to the followers of a religion is a fallacy leading to motions further accelerating terrorism. One might investigate who benefits from this cycle of violence.
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