Many American Muslims Still Targeted and Fearful

September 8, 2002

Source: The Houston Chronicle

On September 8, 2002, The Houston Chronicle reported that for "American Muslims, the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks launched an ordeal that continues to this day... Targeted by hate crimes, fearful of being mistaken for terrorist sympathizers, worried about what the future holds if the United States goes to war with Iraq, many in Houston's 300,000-member Muslim community have seen their comfortable lives eroded by uncertainty and fear...    Nationally, a recent poll found 48 percent of Muslims queried felt their lives had changed for the worse since Sept. 11. In Houston, some Muslim immigrants fearful of misdirected reprisals for the New York and Washington, D.C., attacks have debated leaving America... 'Before Sept. 11, many Muslims were making great strides to more or less being accepted as part of United States society without constantly saying, 'I'm a Muslim,' ' observed David Cook, a Rice University religious studies professor. 'Now they have to start every conversation with an explanation'...  Local Islamic leaders say government terrorist-hunting, detentions and deportation campaigns have made matters worse for the law-abiding Muslim community..."