Ibrahim Hooper, the National Communications Director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), said on MSNBC’s NewsNation Monday that the term “Islamists” is an offensive term that sends a negative message that anyone involved with Islam is somehow involved in a violent plot. Hooper was commenting on anti-terror raids in Turkey when he said:
Well, you have to differentiate between legitimate security concerns and if you find a plot where there’s some violence planned, of course, stop that plot. But we’re also seeing a tremendous rise in Islamaphobia, not only in Europe, but in the United States. We’re, ourselves, we’re receiving tremendous increase in hate messages and threats. We’re seeing threats to mosques, we’re seeing, you know, hate rallies against ordinary Muslim conferences, like over the weekend in Texas.
So, we’re seeing a tremendous rise in the level of Islamaphobia, and I would also caution us all on terminology. In the package preceding this segment, the reference was repeatedly made to ‘Islamists,’ used as a pejorative. And when you start using terms like that as a pejorative, I think it sends a very negative message. It sends a message that anyone involved with Islam in any way is somehow engaging in something they shouldn’t be engaging in. So, we have to examine the terminology and we have to, you know, get out of this downward spiral of hostility and mutual mistrust that these horrific incidents can lead to.
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