In the wake of horrible tragedy in San Bernardino, reckless, controversial, racist and highly charged anti-Muslim remarks by president hopeful Mr. Donald Trump have given rise to violence, intolerance and extremism.
His solution is dangerous and worse than the problem. It will not address the issue of terrorism. It will further strengthen the hands of terrorist groups like ISIS and their efforts to radicalize Muslim youth, here and abroad.
Mr. Trump must know that terrorist groups like ISIS and Al-Qaeda do not represent Islam, a religion that stands for peace, justice and brotherhood. These groups have twisted and misinterpreted the religion. They have hijacked the religion. He must also know that we need the help and cooperation of three million Muslims living in the United States to combat and defeat terrorism at home and abroad. Marginalizing the Muslim community will be totally counterproductive.
Mr. Trump’s rhetoric and poisonous ideology will contribute more to divisiveness, hatred and prejudice in our nation. Already, we are beginning to see incidents of arson, desecration of worship places and rise in Islamophobia. We do not need such a hateful and vicious environment around us.
For me, it is difficult to understand that a highly successful businessman would indulge in making such an irresponsible statement. His anti-Muslim rhetoric is unacceptable and is incompatible with American values. It deserves denunciation at home and abroad.
We are beginning to see that happening. Hopefully, it will have some corrective influence on Mr. Trump not only in respect to Muslims, but also in respect to other minority groups such as Latinos who have equally felt offended by his derogatory remarks.
-- Dr. Sudarshan Kapoor Professor Emeritus Peace Studies CSU Fresno, California