Editorial: Religion and Racism

April 10, 2003

Source: Ethnic News


On April 10, 2003 Ethnic News printed an editorial by Jaideep Singh stating that "the notion of the "Muslim terrorist" is one powerfully etched in the minds of most Americans. By contrast, the perpetrators of the Oklahoma City Federal Building bombing, bombers of medical clinics that provide abortion services, murderers of doctors who provide abortions, and members of various white militia groups are never characterized as 'Christian terrorists.' As scholar Edward Said has noted, the last sanctioned racism in the United States is that directed at followers of the religion of Islam.... The continued and unquestioned utilization of the illogical term 'Muslim terrorist' signifies how the norm in our society is still a white Christian. This is illustrated through media coverage that emphasizes the stark contrast between dark-skinned, turbaned, and bearded Muslims--portrayed as antithetical to everything 'American' and opposed to 'freedom'--as opposed to 'real Americans,' who look a certain way and cherish their freedoms. No one points out that there is something inherently racist about thinking that people of a certain race or national origin do not want to be free."