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No, Bill Maher. We’re Not Going to Stop Hash Tagging about the Ahmed Mohameds of the World.

No, Bill Maher. We’re Not Going to Stop Hash Tagging about the Ahmed Mohameds of the World.

By on September 23, 2015 in civil rights, islamophobia

An Open Letter to Mr. Bill Maher,

On your recent show covering “Ahmed’s Clock Block,” you managed to weave in so much Islamophobic acrimony; I had to pause the video every 20 seconds trying to count the references. I quickly learned that this segment was your temper tantrum over the fact that Muslims and those against Islamophobia were actually heard this week.

Islamophobia Industry = 0
Peace, Love and Sanity = 1

 

Also noticeable on your show is the consistent dropping of F-bombs to get your Islamophobic points across. Interesting strategy. (I might consider the F bomb approach on my blog, but then again, I prefer to use facts and figures as my hook over smut.)

You asked people to “stop using up their heroism hash tagging about the clock kid” and asked them to use it on injustices that make Muslims look bad instead!

Deflection of the argument at hand (circular logic or “straw man argument”) is an oft utilized mechanism in the Islamophobia industry. It usually comes out when grass roots activism a la #IStandWithAhmed is working.

You can almost hear the instructions going on in your studio: “Oh no! Someone is about to feel empathy towards a Muslim or see them as human! Quick! Tell the story about something bad that happened on some mountain top 10,000 miles away by a guy with a Muslim sounding name to remind people that all Muslims are bad!”

I could give an {expletive} load of examples of the Islamophobia industry doing this, but I don’t want to add to their Google rank. (Hope you don’t mind me putting an expletive in brackets. I’m trying to talk to you at your level while still maintaining my own dignity.)

2015-09-20-1442779286-2906042-strawman.jpg
 

Your segment was clearly about one theme ultimately: “Muslims succeeding at calling out Islamophobia for what it is makes me uncomfortable.”

It’s your persona bruised.

After all, hate makes you a lot of money, doesn’t it?

Sorry to play dirty by raising my voice against hate, but it’s a free country – so here goes:

#IStandWithAhmed

#HatersGonnaHate

#IfYouDontLikeMuslimsGoMoveToACountryWhereEveryoneIsAnAtheistWhiteGuy

#WaitThatDoesntExist

#NanaNanaBooBoo

#MakeLoveNotWar

#IslamophobiaIsCancer

You see Mr. Maher, you may have a pulpit to spread your hate, but that doesn’t make your arguments true or positive for society. When you spread anti-Muslim hate, it is dangerous- as you appeal to the lowest denominator of your viewers who react to yourHateorade which can result in violence. This makes you part and parcel to hate crimes against Muslims, those perceived as Muslims and others.

#YeahIJustSaidThat

Your allegation: “It’s not the color of his skin.”

Really? What part of the story made you come to that conclusion? Was it the part where the cop said, “Yup. That’s who I thought it was.” ?

Or was it the part where Mohamed felt “suddenly conscious of his brown skin and name” after dealing with the police, according to the Dallas Morning News?

Your allegation: “[For] 30 years, Muslim young men [have} blown a lot of {expletive} up around the world.”

“For the last 30 years, it’s been one culture that has been blowing {expletive} up over and over again.”

You’re fantastic at painting broad brush strokes, but are you capable of presenting your viewers with the numbers and statistics, Mr. Maher?

#ShowMeTheNumbers

“Contrary to what is alleged by bigots like Bill Maher, Muslims are not more violent than people of other religions. Murder rates in most of the Muslim world are very low compared to the United States.” ~Juan Cole

In Juan Cole’s 2013 Article, Terrorism and the Other Religions, he deconstructs the assertion that Muslims are the bad guys by providing numbers and facts to the contrary.

In fact, for all the examples you rattled off in your temper tantrum clock block segment (bombings in Kenya, Madrid, London) exponentially more facts and figures support the reality that white terrorism is more prevalent in the world and in the United States. 90% of domestic terrorist plots foiled in the United States are by white domestic terrorists. And if you count state sponsored war that has wiped out a couple million innocent Iraqis and that actually created the breeding ground for ISIS, your allegation has become not only muted – but overwhelmingly buried in the cold, hard facts.

Allegation: Garland ,TX (just a stone’s throw from Irving) had an incident where an armed Muslim was killed by security at a Draw the Prophet Muhammad cartoon contest, thus, proving that people need to be afraid of Muslims.

The Draw Muhammad Contest in Texas was a hate rally created by paid Islamophobes that are part of the greater Islamophobia Network. The goal of this event was to stir up anyone crazy as a way to “prove” that Muslims are bad people. You know this yet you spin it in your tantrum as if having hate rallies to begin with is perfectly acceptable in our society.

Allegation: Ahmed getting arrested is “not the end of the world.” Your reasoning is that the end of the world happens for people every day around the world.

Enter the straw man. Your argument is that the world is such a bad place, that it’s okay to falsely arrest, detain and interrogate a minor child because he is brown and Muslim. Bad argument. If it were your kid, Mr. Maher, would you feel the same way? Would you get on your pulpit and defend the indefensible? It’s almost like saying that the Syrian refugee child whose drowned body washed ashore in Turkey is “no big deal” since thousands of kids get killed in Gaza from political violence every year.

Your allegation: “The lack of perspective on this is astounding.”

No, Mr. Maher. The depth of the hatred and propaganda you spread is what is astounding.

In conclusion Mr. Maher, a better use of your time on air would be to encourage your viewers to respect people of other races and religions and to contribute to the scholarship fund for kids like Ahmed to study in Stem fields at Launch Good.

And guess what? The “hash tagging heroism” of millions of people like me against Islamophobia will never be silenced, never waver.

#DealWithIt

#IStandWithAhmed

Sincerely,

Yasmina Reality, Hash Tag Hero

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About the Author

About the Author: I'm a Writer and Muslim Activist. I'm also a Board Member of the #MyJihad Public Education Campaign. Follow my blog at yasminareality.com or follow me on Twitter: @yasmina_reality. I'm also now on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/YasminaReality Peace! .

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