The hashtag #muslimneighborhood is trending on Twitter in response to comments made by GOP candidate Sen. Ted Cruz, who called on authorities to "patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods" following Tuesday's terrorist attack in Brussels.
President Barack Obama called the proposal "un-American" and many on Twitter seem to agree, posting pictures of what their very "American," "Muslim neighborhoods" look like.
Here are few that came from Dearborn, Detroit, Hamtramck and Flint residents:
Some people aren't even allowing Cruz to constrain their narrative to this "Muslim neighborhood" mentality, pointing out that what the GOP candidate has described is an aberration. Today in America, there aren't "Muslim neighborhoods."
Cruz released the following statement Tuesday: "We need to immediately halt the flow of refugees from countries with a significant al Qaida or ISIS presence. We need to empower law enforcement to patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods before they become radicalized. We need to secure the southern border to prevent terrorist infiltration. And we need to execute a coherent campaign to destroy ISIS."
His words fall in line with the anti-Muslim rhetoric that has come out of the GOP this election cycle. Following the deadly ISIS attack on Paris this past November, Cruz's competitor Donald Trump proposed a ban on Muslims entering the United States. At the time Cruz spoke about the need to prioritize Christian immigrants.
President Obama addressed the Islamophobic mentality this fall saying: "When I hear folks say that maybe we should just admit the Christians but not the Muslims, when I hear political leaders suggesting that there would be a religious test for which person who is fleeing from a war-torn country is admitted, when some of those folks themselves come from families who benefited from protection when they were fleeing political persecution, that’s shameful. That’s not American. That’s not who we are.”
Cruz's more recent comments also struck a chord with the president, who noted that profiling those already in America is equally un-American. "Any approach that would single them out, is not only wrong and un-American, but also would be counterproductive," Obama said Wednesday, in response to Cruz's comment.
This sort of Islamophobia is viewed as incredibly troubling by many, who not only see it as bigoted, but as a detriment to public safety, as it misuses public resources. When Gov. Rick Snyder, for example, announced plans to suspend a Syrian relocation initiative in Michigan after the deadly ISIS attack in Paris, local Arab-American advocates spoke out about the harm such broad stroke plans cause.
“He's just basically buying into what ISIS wants: Muslims against the West ... Gov. Snyder is buying into the rhetoric," Maged Moughni, a Dearborn attorney, told the Detroit Free Press in November.