(New York, NY. 04/15/2019) – Less than a week after a man in New York had threatened and planned to assault and murder Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, the New York Post published an inflammatory front page that took Omar’s comments out of context with a clear intention to incite hatred and make an association between her and 9/11 horrific attacks. This decision is not only irresponsible in the wake of clear attempts and threats that have been made against her life due to the smears made against her, but it also perpetuates the Islamophobic association of Muslims and Islam with terrorism.
Omar’s comments about 9/11 attacks were made in order to call to question the Islamophobic narrative that followed the attack. Muslims as a collective were constantly blamed for 9/11 attacks by media outlets, politicians, and civil society in order to justify Islamophobic policies domestically and internationally. Throughout history, dehumanizing rhetoric has been a tool used by political actors to cheapen the lives of undesirable communities as a precursor to violence against those communities.
With President Donald Trump joining forces to smear the Muslim Congresswoman, it becomes evident that Muslim citizens are constantly otherized and accused of being a fifth column whenever they participate in civil society. Moreover, these demonization campaigns against Muslims give ammunition to White supremacists to carry on horrific attacks against Muslims as we have witnessed in the shooting in New Zealand mosques less than a month ago.
Majlis Ash-Shura: Islamic Leadership Council of New York, an umbrella organization and representative of over 90 mosques and Muslim-led organizations in New York, calls for a collective boycott of the New York Post because of their relentless demonization and attacks against the Muslim community.