Yesterday after the bombings in Boston, it seemed like some people thought the best people to blame (or issue death threats again, in a few cases) were Muslims. One girl on Twitter (whose parents share the same ideas) even justified this by saying that Muslims were the only ones to ever use bombs against American targets. Seriously? Has she been skipping History class? I’m pretty sure that Eric Robert Rudolph and Timothy McVeigh weren’t Muslims. Theodore Kaczynski (the Unabomber) wasn’t a Muslim either, nor was George Metesky (the Mad Bomber). The 1958 bombing of the Hebrew Benevolent Congregation Temple in Atlanta wasn’t carried out by Muslims. The Wall Street bombing in 1920 wasn’t carried out by Muslims, nor were the Black Tom Explosion in 1916, the LA Times bombing in 1910, the Bath School disaster in 1927, the firebombing of Vernon Dahmer in 1966, the 16th Street Baptist Church Bombing in Birmingham in 1963, and the bombing of the home of Harry T. Moore and his wife in Mims, Florida in 1951 are all examples of bombings that were not carried out by Muslims. In fact, the ones that I’ve listed were carried out by white people.
I don’t understand why people think that the only crimes in this country that occur are carried out by persons of color* or people from certain religious backgrounds. Actually, I do. It’s because we have a very racist mentality that is fed by the fear-mongering that goes on from politicians and pundits and even the media. People justify this bigotry by focusing on the stories that confirm their hatred (i.e. 9/11) and forgetting that there are a hell of a lot of crimes that happen every day that are carried out by non-Muslims and non-POCs.
Most people in this world are not dangerous. Most Muslims are not dangerous. Terrorists, members of hate groups, people who commit violent crimes, etc. do not make up the majority of the population, and they do not make up the majority (or even a significant portion) of different cultural groups, religions, and races. This is why groups and individuals that commit this sort of thing are generally labeled “extremists”, because they are in the extreme. They aren’t the norm and they shouldn’t be treated like they are. This hatred of anyone that we choose to label as being “bad” or “evil” because of their religion, race, culture, sexual orientation, gender, sex, or any other difference is sickening. This bigotry that so many carry is truly messed up and it needs to stop. All the bigotry does is increase the amount of hate that exists in the world, which increases the likelihood of someone acting out in a violent manner.
We don’t know who committed the bombings. It could be an Islamic extremist group. It could be a group of white supremacists. It could be anyone. Whoever it was did a bad thing, but their actions do not have to define anyone else and their actions do not have to inspire others to blame or hate anyone else.
* = I’ve seen a lot of people call for executions, deportations, and torture of Hispanics, Asians, Blacks, etc. any time a POC is accused of a crime–even minor acts of vandalism.