The Sacramento Bee has released a fantastic editorial [registration required, but is free] that discusses the anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, and specifically reminds us that "Terror is homegrown, too." The editorial notes:
The relevance of this history is explained in compelling language:
In the immediate aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing on April 19, 1995, suspicion focused on terrorists from the Middle East. Muslims, or people wrongly assumed to be Muslims or Arabs, were vilified and assaulted. One Muslim American was held and interrogated by police for a couple of days, and one man - a Sikh - was killed by a man who took him for a Muslim. A recent e-mail distributed by the Council on American-Islamic Relations refers to "a wave of anti-Muslim hysteria that resulted in almost 250 incidents of harassment, discrimination and actual violence against American Muslims or those perceived to be Middle Eastern.
Why bring up all this now? Because the next terror attack in this country may again produce irrational responses, no matter how much Americans have come to realize that the great majority of Muslims, as well as people of all backgrounds, are neither terrorists nor sympathizers.... All Americans have a duty not only to be alert to the threat of terrorism and to make necessary sacrifices to defend against it, but to be prepared to keep their heads if and when another murderous assault occurs.It is impressive that a major newspaper has released such a significant editorial and has made the dual-argument that many in the Arab, Muslim, South Asian, and Sikh communities have raised themselves since 9/11: 1) no single ethnic or religious group is responsible for acts of terrorism against this nation, and 2) even so, people should be judged as individuals (as Caucasians are so willing to do with other Caucasians) rather than on the basis of their perceived identity.
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