What MSAs Can Do to Defeat Islamophobia?

Let us make a serious effort to fight hate on campus.

All surveys have shown that students are especially skeptical of hate mongering. The highest favorable rating of Muslims (49%) is in the age group of 18-29. Even at the height of Israeli bombing of Gaza, a majority of students, unlike the majority of America, opposed it.

1. Develop a dialogue with African-American, Latino, and Jewish organizations for a common cause against racism and bigotry.

2. Develop an anti-racism coalition to encourage a welcoming environment for all students free of racism, Islamophobia, anti-immigrant sentiment, and anti-Semitism.

3. Deny hatemongers high fees for campus speeches: Make sure hatemongers like Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, etc. are not invited to speak. For a list of designated hatemongers, Google “Islamophobia’s Dirty Dozen”.

4. Stand up for minorities: Thousands of children are languishing in abusive prisons, and they are disproportionately African-American and Latino. Working on this cause will connect you with other minority and immigrants’ rights groups. Minorities will be majority in the U.S. by 2050.

5. Talk to the Tea Party at tea: The power of the dialogue is surprising. A few Tea Party groups backed away from anti-Muslim rhetoric when they engaged with Muslims personally.

6. Own a Wikipedia entry: Although no one owns a Wikipedia article, thousands of Islamophobes are polluting it with their hate. Every MSA member can adopt an article to improve, learn what needs to be change with the help of some good scholars, and get an alert each time someone tries to change it.

7. Hire someone for the MSA: Hillel, the largest Jewish student organization, does much more for their causes because of full-time staff. Can each MSA have at least one parttime staff or intern initially? Can a Masjid fund it?

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