News and Perspectives
Sidhra Musani started high school at a private Islamic school. Now, she said she is the only visible Muslim in her advanced classes.
Musani enrolled at the University of Minnesota and became president of the Muslim Students Association, but she said she still worries her classmates judge her for wearing a hijab.
“I had to think three times [about] everything I was going to say,” she said, “because I knew that there is that pressure … whether you like or not, people are [going to] judge you for what you say, and they’re [going to] attribute it [to] your faith.”
This past week, two abhorrent incidents targeted the University of Minnesota’s Muslim community.
On Thursday, the spray-painted word “ISIS” was discovered on the Muslim Students Association’s Washington Avenue Bridge panel. A day earlier, the Horowitz Freedom Center distributed posters on campus alleging that a University group Students for Justice in Palestine is a front for Hamas.
These two events are distressing examples of the pernicious Islamophobia that exists within our campus community. We find great sorrow in these explicit messages of hate.
Dear Members of the Twin Cities Campus Community,
In the past 48 hours, the Twin Cities campus community has experienced two hate-based incidents that have caused great concern and fear among members of our community, especially those who have been targeted. A statement from Danita Brown Young provides details about the first incident. This morning, we also learned that the Muslim Students Association's panel on the Washington Avenue Bridge was defaced with the word "ISIS."
We condemn these incidents. They are abhorrent actions that will not be tolerated on our campus. The University of Minnesota must be a safe and welcoming campus for all students, including, of course, members of our Muslim community. Such hateful speech runs counter to the values of our institution, which must include a climate that encourages the thoughtful and respectful exchange of ideas. We can disagree on issues, but cannot accept targeted hate.
When a university student is sexually assaulted, there's the physical and psychological trauma they face.
Then there's another big question: what to do about the perpetrator.
Read or listen to the Minnesota Public Radio story, which includes an interview with Aurora Center Director Katie Eichele.