While local bigots and fearmongers hosted a well-protested anti-Muslim propaganda rally at NSU last week, South Dakota State University invited the public to hear some facts about Islam in America. Dean Obeidallah, co-producer of the 2014 documentary The Muslims Are Coming!, offered a simple message of standing up for marginalized Americans and sticking together, the way Americans are supposed to:
According to a CNN article by Daniel Burke, in 2016 anti-Muslim based hate crimes had a 67 percent increase, a level of violence that hasn’t been recorded since right after 9/11.
Despite an increase in crimes against his religion, Obeidallah said there’s no better time for all marginalized groups to come together and show strength in numbers, which is why his message stays the same regardless of how many Muslims are in the audience.
“It’s never been more important to build alliances between our communities, to stand up with each other, to stand up for each other, to be there for each other and to make it clear that we’re not going to let anyone feel alone,” he said [Lauren Franken, “‘The Muslims Are Coming!’: Comedy Bridges Cultural Divide,” SDSU Collegian, 2018.09.21].
[Bonus Punctuation Highlight: Notice Franken’s attentive and correct deployment of three consecutive punctuation marks.]
I also recommend laughing at them.