Flying while brown: Racial profiling and the US constitution

Comment: In this article, Omar T. Mohammedi – speaker at this year’s American-Arab anti-discrimination convention and lawyer for ‘the Six Imams’ case – discusses racial profiling by airlines in the US.

The mounting number of civil rights violations against Muslims, Arabs, South Asians and anyone who is perceived to be of Middle Eastern heritage, is alarming. These violations are committed by our law enforcement, private and public institutions, as well as ordinary citizens. As a lawyer, I have an even deeper concern knowing that many Americans feel that all Arabs and Muslims should be treated as terrorists until they can prove otherwise. It seems the notion of a person is innocent until proven guilty has been reversed.

Guilt by association has become the ordinary analysis of many scholars. The American public is being subjected to a daily barrage of right-wing anti-Muslim rhetoric from Donald Trump and other public officials, that goes largely unchallenged. This has resulted in further violations of civil rights against members of the Muslim and Arab communities. Statements made by some right-wing extremists and media outlets are resulting in profiling, discrimination and hate crimes such as the unprecedented surge in killings of Muslims in New York and around the country. Read More…

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