Donald Trump has been using extremist demagoguery since the very beginning of his campaign. While his first target was illegal immigrants, later on in the primary he began to focus his attention and hate on a “Muslim ban”.
He has been accused of inciting violence, whether at his rallies or simply through his day-to-day rhetoric. Today, at least one Muslim in New York says that Trump is to blame for a shooting that killed two Muslims in Queens.
A New York imam and his assistant were shot in Queens on Saturday by a lone gunman outside the Al-Furqan Jame Masjid Mosque. The imam, Alala Uddin Akongi, and his assistant, Thara Uddin, both died after the incident that occurred around 1:50PM.
Congregants got together at the mosque after the shooting to mourn together as a community. One of the congregants, Khairul Islam, told the Daily News:
“We blame Donald Trump for this…Trump and his drama has created Islamaphobia.”
While the incident was not initially labelled a hate crime by the NYPD, local Muslims are not so quick to agree. A neighborhood resident and leader at another mosque responds:
“For no reason. He had finished his prayers…somebody else with him. Just a pure, blind, hate crime.”
While there is no doubt that Islamaphobia has been alive and active in America for more than a decade now, it is still completely fair to place blame on Donald Trump for this horrific event.
Because of his complete disrespect and disparaging of Islamic people, those with a tendency towards Islamophobia have had a soapbox through the Republican presidential candidate.
He is echoing and legitimizing sentiments of people who refuse to recognize the humanity of an individual because of their religion. He is giving people like the man who shot these two innocent individuals a reason to pull the trigger.
With Donald Trump as president, I think it’s safe to expect more hate crimes such as this popping up around the country. We cannot let that happen.