Muslim-Americans Racial Profiling Continues in Nation's Airports

We arrived in a small blocked-off area, and we looked around and we saw 200 other Arabs, South Asians and Muslims with us. They asked my sister whether she felt that Iraq was better now or under Saddam’s rule, and they were recording everything they asked us.

They didn’t provide us with enough seating. They didn’t provide us with food or water. And whenever we asked if we could have these things, if they could be given to us, they said that it’s not the government’s job to provide them for us.

Q: Now, they threatened to arrest you? For what?

I was just asking the officer to speak nicely to the people instead of yelling at them. And he said, “Well, I’ll arrest you, if you don’t be quiet.”







2 responses to “Muslim-Americans Racial Profiling Continues in Nation's Airports”

  1. Maryam Webster Avatar

    I’m a white girl from mid-Missouri and a very, very long time ago, I used to be Muslim – for about three years in college when I was very, very young. And at that time I had an FBI profile started on me that probably still exists, and a couple of frightening visits from FBI officers….because I (unknowingly) fraternized with members of Iran’s Hezbollah who today would probably shoot me on sight as I am visibly no longer involved in the religion.

    I kept the Muslim name I took on, Maryam, because it suits me so much better than ever my given name did. And because of it, even though I have a European surname, I am consistently profiled for “special baggage and personal check” in every airport I have been in since 9/11. I’m asked if I read the Koran, if I still have any contacts in the Hezbollah (obviously, the FBI profile has followed me to some extent though it confounds me why TSA screeners know about this) and questions of a similar nature.

    I look so profoundly NON Muslim that they soon give up and vet me on through security, but a few times I’ve been quarantined with brown-skinned, Arabic-speaking women who were grilled far harder than I, and subjected to personal body searches…including the dreaded cavity search. Which thankfully, I have never had to endure.

    But I am “randomly selected” for bag going-through and personal body searches Every. Single. Time. And I have not flown once since 2002 that my bag has not been rifled through by TSA.

    Random, my ass.

    I find it interesting and frustrating, that after nearly thirty years that a youthful experiment can still be held against one. Shades of the 50’s, Communist Cards, Warren Commission and “The Crucible”.

  2. Maryam Webster Avatar

    jeeze, did I say Warren Commission? I was mixing my conspiracy theory metaphors. I meant McCarthyism and the House Un-American Activities Committee. Too late to cog-i-tate. But that’s why us commie pinko, dirty hippie camel jockey fesbian leminist shiksa terrorist types stay up late at night – plotting the downfall of the empire don’tcha know…

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