Islamophobia appears to have grown stronger with the election of Donald Trump as U.S. President last November.
The American National Election Survey released recent data on the election showing Republican presidential voters were more likely to vote based on racial attitudes towards non-white people.
There have also been a number of incidents of Islamophobia in Canada, with the most severe being the mosque shooting in Quebec City where six people were killed by a man on Jan. 30. Students at Humber College say while they have not experienced discrimination for the most part, they do have many things to say about Trump and his policies on Muslims.
“He’s the president, he can allow a few refugees in. He shouldn’t say anything that goes against a group of people,” said 27-year-old Hafiz Umar, an accounting student.
Umar said he has a concern with the word Islamophobia.
It’s not a disease, so how can you call it a phobia?” he asked. “It’s not the religion that is the terrorists, it’s the people who are terrorists.”
Trump signed two Executive Orders in January banning refugees and even visitors from seven Muslim majority countries.
Several federal judges from New York, Alexandria, Va., Brooklyn, Massachusetts, and Seattle blocked the first order. When the new revised second Executive order came out, a judge in Hawaii blocked it, too.
The day after the first Executive Order came into effect, Trudeau tweeted a message welcoming all refugees to Canada.
“To those fleeing persecution, terror & war, Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith. Diversity is our strength,” Trudeau tweeted.
Muslim students are in opposition to the Executive Orders.
“I’m against it, my country is one of those Trump banned,” said Nimo Hussein, a York University student.
“I wish he wouldn’t do that and actually encourage refugees to come in, it would help and not cause a negative effect.” said 18-year-old Ruba Alrefai, a Humber interior design student.
“People should be educated about Islam,” said Abidi Ali, a student in academic upgrading.