Democracy Now: New York Taxi Driver Stabbed in Anti-Muslim Attack


The ongoing hysteria over a proposed Islamic cultural center near Ground Zero appears to be fueling anti-Muslim attacks both here in New York and nationwide. A New York City taxi driver was stabbed multiple times Tuesday after a drunken passenger determined he is a Muslim. The victim, Ahmed Sharif, was slashed across his face, neck and hands. Sharif says the suspect, Michael Enright, had asked him several questions about his religion, including whether he’s a Muslim and observing Ramadan. Enright recently returned from Afghanistan, where he was filming US troops for a documentary. As he attacked Sharif, Enright is said to have yelled, “Consider this a checkpoint.” Enright was arraigned Wednesday on multiple charges including felony attempted murder as a hate crime. Bhairavi Desai of the New York Taxi Workers Alliance told Democracy Now! that from his hospital bed, Sharif had asked her to warn other Muslim drivers to be fearful in the current political climate.

Bhairavi Desai: “The first thing he said to me was we have to get the message out, because we can’t let this escalate, drivers need to protect themselves. He said the environment right now is very serious. There is no doubt in our minds that the fear mongering and the ignorance and the hatred that has been spewing around this Islamic cultural center—which has erroneously been called the ‘Ground Zero mosque’—we have no doubt that it’s that hatred that’s risen to the surface and that’s led to this violence. And all of these has-been politicians, you know, who around the country who have been making a bigger issue out of this, that man’s blood is on their hands.”

~ by wheresthemic on August 26, 2010.

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