The furor over plans to build a Muslim cultural center near the World Trade Center site shows nine years of efforts to separate Islam from association with terrorism have largely failed, experts say.
“I’d take it one step further. I’d say that it’s far, far worse today than it was in the immediate aftermath of 9/11,” said Reza Aslan, a writer and scholar on religion.
Aslan blames “Islamophobia” that he said was being whipped by the Republican Party establishment. “They are making religious bigotry – just as they made anti-immigrant sentiment – part of their political platform,” Aslan said. “Democrats in the most cowardly fashion have completely caved in to this challenge.”