Essay about The Media 's Portrayal Of Anti Islam

Essay about The Media 's Portrayal Of Anti Islam

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A terrorist, a word that means many different things to many different people, is painted by the media as an easily identifiable, one-dimensional, criminal in modern society. Google “terrorist”, and the only thing portrayed is turban wearing, automatic rifle carrying, Islamic extremist. Based on what has been learned through movies and mass media, the ability to identify a “terrorist” even when fully covered can be done based on the clothing and the surroundings in the images. American stereotypes also imply the conclusion that the location is in the Middle East, therefore, they have to be terrorists which also identifies them as Muslim. After 9/11 the media inundated the American public with feelings of fear and outrage perpetuating Islamophobia. The media’s portrayal of anti - Muslim sentiment is influencing and steering the American public because perpetuating stereotypes create a distorted representation and has increased anti-Muslim attitudes in the United States.
Knowledge is power and possessing a great deal of information regarding the culture of a group with a general understanding of the way of life should boost liking preventing the perpetuated stereotypes. Sadly, over fifty percent of Americans admit that they now little to nothing about the Islam religion. Islam is the second largest religion in the world totaling over one billion people living all over the world. According to the Brookings Institution, “88% of Americans agree that America was founded on the idea of religious freedom for everyone, including religious groups that are unpopular but 47% of Americans feel Islam and American values are incompatible.” Mass media is the only exposure to Islam available for most Americans. A lot of “Americans differentiate b...

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... fear of being lumped into the terrorist category just because they resembled a culture seen by many in the United States as violent. A man could no longer enter an airport wearing a turban without backlash. People often mistake Sikhs for Muslims making them targets for attack. The media did not teach us how to differentiate between Sikh, Muslims, or terrorists. The only visual cue the media provides is associated with brown skin, wearing a burka with a long beard and of course a turban to complete the stereotype of a Muslim and is often associated radical Islamic groups. To this day people are weary of an individual just for wearing head gear that resembles a turban. As American “continue to focus on Muslim identity, loyalty and Muslims’ role in countering extremism, Gallup data reveals a Muslim-American population that skews young and is racially diverse” (Gallup).

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