As ThinkProgress and many other outlets noted earlier today, a Muslim New York City cab driver appeared to be the first physical casualty of the controversy surrounding the Islamic center near Ground Zero. The passenger reportedly asked the cab driver if he was a Muslim. After the driver responded affirmatively, the passenger said, “Assalamu alaikum — consider this a checkpoint!” and slashed the driver’s neck and face.
But in addition to acts of bodily harm against Muslims, the ugly and emotional Ground Zero debate has generated hate crimes against a mosque in California. The Fresno Bee reports that a brick was thrown through a window of the Madera Islamic center last Friday. There have been repeated instances of hate directed against this particular mosque. Signs have been left at the Islamic center carrying inflammatory messages, like this one:
The other signs left at the Madera mosque read: “Wake up America, the Enemy is here. ANB” and “American Nationalist Brotherhood.”
ThinkProgress has previously noted that there has been a spate of hate crimes against mosques in America. For instance, a mosque in South Arlington, Texas, was vandalized earlier this month. “The vandals also cut a pipe, allegedly thinking that it was a natural gas line.” Also, the Al-Farooq Islamic Center in Nashville, Tennessee was vandalized with anti-Muslim graffiti. And in a Jacksonville mosque this year, a pipe bomb was set off and a “tissue stuffed inside with white powder” was sent in the mail to one of the community’s local religious leaders.