Sunday, May 8, 2011

Muslim scholars pulled off of jet in Memphis

One one hand, I appreciate that we must be vigilant against the terror threat. On the other hand, that vigilance can so easily degrade into unfounded fear and stereotypes.

Two Muslim scholars, Masudar Rahman (professor of Arabic at the University of Memphis) and Mohamed Zaghloul, imam at the Islamic Association of Greater Memphis, were asked to get off of an Atlantic Southeast Airlines jet heading from Memphis to Charlotte. Ironically, the two men were on their way to a conference about American fears and discrimination against Muslims, or Islamophobia. 

In spite of the fact that they'd been cleared by the Transportation Security Administration and already subjected to additional security checks, the pilot decided to have them deplane. They arrived nine hours late to the conference, where it can be certain they had a story to tell about Islamophobia.

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