As the FBI pursues one alleged terrorist plot after another, Muslim Americans are grappling with a widespread sense that the government thinks they all could be terrorists.
In dozens of interviews across the country, McClatchy has found that the government’s search for the enemy within is threatening to divide and destroy America’s Muslim communities.
“It’s not a guilty complex; it’s the stigma of being a Muslim and constantly having to defend religion,” said Edina Lekovic, the communications director for the Muslim Public Affairs Council. “It causes people to give up and say, ‘Why should I bother? No one likes me. Why should I keep trying?’ ”
Americans of all faiths support the government’s efforts to keep them safe, but the war on terrorism looks different to those who find themselves under constant scrutiny because of their religion, ethnicity or both. [continued…]