on Islamophobia

Does this image make you fearful or angry?

burka

When they get home and remove the abaya, underneath women are often wearing expensive designer clothes and jewelry. Arab men love expensive garments, as well, but are as covered up head-to-foot in their own traditional ‘thawb’.

men-in-white

Islamophobia (or anti-Muslim sentiment) is a term for prejudice against, hatred towards, or fear of the religion of Islam or Muslims. The term entered into common English usage in 1997 …

Some commentators have posited an increase in Islamophobia resulting from the September 11 attacks, while others have associated it with the increased presence of Muslims in the United States, the European Union and other secular nations. …

There is no shortage of guys like this in 2015. Politicians use fear of Islam to motivate him to show up at the polls on election day.

islamophobic I’ve spent a lot of time in Muslim nations since 1994. I just left Saudi Arabia. Arrived Qatar.

For men, Islamic nations are very hospitable.  Most lists of friendliest nations include Syria, Jordan and Iran. I’ve not been to Iran. But of the 70 nations I have traveled, Syria and Jordan were by far the most welcoming. Egyptians I found very warm too.

I can’t say much about Women’s rights in Saudi Arabia. But, it’s much more complicated than you and I know.

More university graduates in Saudi Arabia are Saudi women than men, and female literacy is estimated to be 91% (though lower than male literacy) is far higher than just 40 years ago. The average age at first marriage among Saudi females in the kingdom is 25 years. …

The World Economic Forum 2013 Global Gender Gap Report ranked Saudi Arabia 127th out of 136 countries for gender parity. …

same hate new target

Islamophobia is fairly new. When I was in school the evil enemy was the Commies. It was the Cold War. Friends of mine parroted Better Dead than RED.

better dead than red

I recall how shocked Richard Englehardt was when I told him I would not fight the Russians. Most of my sport heroes were Soviet gymnasts. Many of my coaching mentors were Russian. In fact, I told REnglehardt, I’d probably be better off coaching under the Red Menace.

My grandparents immigrated from Ireland. In that era they suffered persecution.

no-irish-sign-1

(I’d heard about signs like this.  But one historian argues they are a myth.) 

It seems to be human nature to want to hate some enemy. The enemy frequently changes. Haters not so much. 😦

related – Guardian – America’s embrace of Islamophobia is new – but not surprising

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Rick Mc

Career gymnastics coach who loves the outdoors, and the internet.

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