Campus needs understanding not hate
Letter to the Editor
We thought we saw the worst of anti-Islam ads when the ones in the New York Subway went up, but even those have been trumped by the one put up in The Daily Targum on March 5th. I’m sure every Muslim on campus shares this very sentiment. However, the distress we feel takes on a new dimension when we come to our institution of learning, one that is supposed to represent open minds, and are faced with this.
Of course, the actual allegations against Islam are painful enough, but even more factors come into play when one considers what went into posting this advertisement. It had to be made. It had to be shown to someone for approval. And it had to be unapologetically posted and distributed all over campus. Not only do these accusations not represent my religion, but they seek to fuel the rampant Islamophobia that has been responsible for crimes against Muslims (or their likenesses, as evidenced by the murders of Sikhs). Even more appalling is that if this had been an ad attacking Judaism, it would have been immediately denounced as anti-Semitic, but a full page spread vilifying Islam is met with silence and shrugged shoulders.
Muslims should not be the only ones speaking out against this hate speech. When one person’s rights come under attack, we should all stand against it. Such advertisements are not acceptable, and should not be posted in, of all places, a university newspaper. As Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness — only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate — only love can do that.”
Sara Zayed is a School of Arts and Sciences first-year student.