Muslims Targeted By Anti-Islam Backlash In Days After Paris Attacks

As feared, multiple Islamophobic incidents have been reported since Friday.

As the world continues to mourn the victims of Friday's massacre in Paris, Muslims in the U.S. and Canada have reported assaults, vandalism and threats at the hands of Islamophobic individuals.

Since Friday, anti-Muslim sentiment has pervaded the political conversation. Almost all of the Republicans running for president in 2016 have called for blocking Syrian Muslim refugees from entering the U.S., citing concerns over terrorist infiltration. Meanwhile, more than half of the country's governors said they'll do anything within their power to stop Syrians from resettling in their states.

While many have stood up for Islam using hashtags like #MuslimsAreNotTerrorist, there has been a wave of fear-driven backlash in recent days. Here are just some of the incidents since Friday's attacks:

Mosques Threatened, Vandalized
On Monday, vandals targeted a mosque in Pflugerville, Texas, tearing up a Quran and covering it in feces.

Meanwhile, police say a mosque in Ontario, Canada, was deliberately set on fire Sunday evening.

And in Florida, several mosques received threatening calls. The FBI determined, however, they were not legitimate threats.
Sign Asks Muslim Community If They're 'Sorry' For Attacks
A couple in Toronto faced backlash for posting a sign asking Muslims if they are "sorry for the slaughter of innocent people."

“I don’t think it’s hateful, I don’t think it’s racist," said the woman behind the sign.

The couple, however, changed the sign after local news reported on it, saying they feared "retribution."
Student Harassed For Texting In Movie Theater
Katja Kircher via Getty Images
The Village Voice has a story from Christian Alexander Pean, a 28-year-old medical student, who was on his phone texting friends before a screening of "The Martian" in New York City. A man approached him and asked what he was doing in the theater, and told Pean he felt threatened by him.

"'Guys like you texting and standing,'" the man said, according to Pean. "'It’s very suspicious.'"

Pean is a U.S. citizen who grew up in Texas.

Read the whole story here.
Laura Ingraham Live-Tweets 'Middle Eastern-Looking Men' Getting Removed From Flight
Darren McCollester via Getty Images
On Sunday, a flight from the Washington, D.C., area to Boston was deplaned after the crew reported two passengers engaged in "suspicious activity." No abnormalities were detected on the plane upon investigation, and the flight later departed. The two individuals were taken in for questioning but later released and booked on a later flight.

Conservative pundit Laura Ingraham happened to be on the flight, and live-tweeted the incident.

"Guys--AA Flight #2124 ready for take off to BOS minus the two Middle Eastern passengers!" she wrote.
The Daily Mail Comic Draws Criticism
Twitter users pointed out the similarities between the Daily Mail's comic and an anti-Semitic cartoon published in the 1930s.
Former NYC Cop: Let's Start Spying On Muslims Again
Bloomberg via Getty Images
Former New York City cop Bo Dietl stopped by Fox News Monday expressing support for monitoring mosques in order fend off potential attacks by the Islamic State.

"We broke so many, so many plots by eavesdropping on these radical mosques," Dietl claimed. "We've got to do it again -- and let's stop worrying about people's rights."
Woman Beaten, Called A 'Terrorist'
Finn O'Hara via Getty Images
CBC reports that a Toronto-area woman was beaten and robbed by two men while picking up her children from school. According to police, the men told her to "go back to her country" and called her a terrorist.

Police are investigating the incident as a hate crime.
Hindu Temple Vandalized In Canada
Arctic-Images via Getty Images
A Hindu temple in Ontario, Canada, was vandalized Sunday night while the temple's spirtual leader was attending a nearby vigil for the victims of the Paris attacks. Five stones were thrown into the temple, smashing two windows.

"It's an unfortunate circumstance if people are making a correlation between what happened in France and our area," Staff Srg. Michael Haffner told CBC. "Until we locate anyone who is responsible it would be difficult to speculate."
Passengers Removed From Flight At BWI
Mark Wilson via Getty Images
On Tuesday morning, four passengers were removed from a Spirit Airlines flight at BWI Airport after another passenger alerted a flight attendant to "suspicious activity." According to a reporter on board, the passengers appeared to be "of Middle Eastern descent." All passengers were then moved from the plane to the gate while the aircraft was inspected, and the "suspicious" passengers, three men and one woman, were taken in for questioning. The plane was later cleared for takeoff about three hours behind schedule.

"While the aircraft was taxiing to the runway, a passenger alerted a flight attendant of a passenger engaged in suspicious activity on board," Spirit Airlines said in a statement. "The flight attendant notified the captain, and out of an abundance of caution, the plane returned to the gate."

At least one of the passengers has been released with no charges.
Uber Driver Says Passenger Attacked Him Because He Thought He Was Muslim
An Uber driver in Charlotte, North Carolina, says a passenger assumed he was Muslim and attacked him early Sunday morning.

He asked me if I was a Muslim. I said I was not a Muslim," Samson Woldemichael told WBTV. "I was driving and he hit me while I was driving."

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