I found this interview very interesting because it shows how Arab Muslims in the United States are the most recent group to be oppressed because of their social identities in a country which has a long history of doing that just that to many different groups. Dr. Bagby insightfully notes that while on paper American Muslims succeed in America, in reality they often face overt racism. He also calls on the American Muslim community to not only be pollitcally active in defending itself but to legitimize these actions by becoming a part of mainstream American society as well.
This interview leaves me to ask the question: in today’s poliltical climate, how can American Arab Muslims can respect in our society whilst holding on to their own culture and religion? The media often points fingers at Muslims, grouping them all into extremist categories. how can the American Muslim community show that it is well-intentioned and harmless, just like any other past immigrant group to the United States (such as the Irish and Jews) whilst maintaining a cultural identity? Many Arabs feel target at airports- is avoiding a stigma worth appearing “less Arab;” completely acculturating?