Do Michele Bachmann's Statements Keep Muslims Out of Politics?
Key GOP leaders did the right thing last week, with Sen. John McCain speaking out against Rep. Michele Bachmann's allegation that Hillary Clinton's aide may have ties to the Islamic terrorists. As you may remember, Clinton's aide, Huma Abedin, has seen enough troubles of her own-- unrelated to her religion, but to her husband Anthony Weiner.
But how much anti-Muslim sentiment goes unchecked in the political world? As Zahir Janmohamed writes, it happens more often than you'd like to think-- and not just in conservative circles. Read this excerpt, then check out the full post on Racialicious.
Muslims have internalized this discrimination, too—when I worked for Amnesty International, Muslim groups called me to have a rep speak at their event. When I suggested that I speak, Muslim groups often insisted that I invite a non-Muslim instead. “We want someone who can connect with more people,” they said.
I have learned not to talk about this. There are costs of sharing these anecdotes, and to succeed in DC is to remember its code: DC is small; everyone knows each other; be grateful for what you have achieved; people will talk.
But our silence is eroding careers. Because in this outrage over Bachman’s comments, we miss an important fact: the smearing of Abedin and other Muslim policy professionals is working to raise a level of suspicion of Muslims, Arabs, and South Asians that echoes far outside the Republican right.