Stereotypes/Biases towards Arab-Americans By Richard Elia

Take 30 seconds out of your day and ask yourself this question. "When was the last time in the media were Arab-Americans shown as anything other than an uneducated enemies. In the modern world right now there is little to no representation of Arab-Americans and whatever there is we are never shown as Americans, rather we are shown as the national enemy.

Many people do not see what we go through but i want to share a personal experience. When I was fourteen years old I was traveling to Lebanon with my mother and brother.

We always had financial difficulties and this only allowed us to travel to see my sick grandmother every two years during the summer time. When we arrived at the airport, my brother and I took the luggage's out of our vehicle and laid them on top of the cart that a nice man brouht to us.

My father parked the car and followed us into the area where he would be able to see us go through security. Before we got into the line he told up "inshallah tousalo bil salemeh", which means "I hope to god you travel and arrive safely". These words eased my mind that was on edge from reading what the news portrays and shows the world the false reality of what we are.

We get into the line and the TSA person checked in all three of our American Passports we then proceeded. As we got to the area to check out our belongings I see a couple people in front of us they pulled a man out wearing a turban for a "random check". When we arrived at the front we had another check so we started to take off our shoes and put our belongings through the x-ray then we all walked through.

A TSA agent walked up to my brother and says they are pulling him for a random check. My brother, Anthony was born and raised in America. It was my brother that spoke perfect English, my brother that has american passport and my brother that happens to have a beard and resembles an Arab. They pulled him away to a room and my mom started questioning why.

My mother has a Lebanese accent which then the agent started getting mad that she didn't want my brother to go They told her to stay calm and that it was a random check. They ripped him away from us and took him to seperate room and patted him down everywhere, checked all his belongings and questioned him. An Arab-American who has done nothing pulled and excluded from everyone and given "special treatment" just because of his looks.

This is what is messed up with the media because they are the ones causing this "terrorist" stereotype. Never once have we been the ones that they portray as good or nice people. This is just one out of million personal stories when an arab has felt targeted.

This is a good way to portray how Arabs are treated especially in airports.

For an Arab you notice that there is no representation in the media for us. None whatsoever and whatever is shown about our culture or people is when there is something bad like a bombing or attack that happened. We are only portrayed as a enemy. They don't show how we do so much for the world.

Biggest oil reserves in the world and much of the oil that the world uses comes from an Arab country. Carlos Slim one of the richest men in the world is half Lebanese through his cellular industry in central america. Shakira and Salma Hayek are examples of celebrities with Lebanese and even George Clooney married a Muslim woman.

We are only portrayed as an enemy against the united states because of the 9/11 attacks which one the biggest tragedy to america. The media has a reason that they only show us as the enemy. The same reason they are showing how blacks are being prosecuted. They only show the bad because of the people, ratings, profit. The bad is what makes money and the stereotypes towards these people are outrageous.

Being shown as the enemy makes someone become scared to show their true colors. I know many that are embarrassed to show that they are Arab-Americans. They are afraid of being treated differently based solely on their race, not knowing who they truly are. Having shame for being who you are is the worse thing ever.

If you type in Arab in Google News Search many things show up. Many are negative, like this quote i found with 10 seconds of searching. "Arabs steal rifles from sleeping soldiers," they didn't say who, they just put the whole Middle East in the quote. I look through the searches and all i see is, "Bombing", "Murder", "ISIS". This is countless and it's unacceptable.

We are only portrayed as the enemy because of the media. because of the agendas they have to keep making profit. instead of staying true to there words they make things look much worse than they really are for the ratings. We need to find a solution for this. We need to stop watching "fake news", we need to start finding out who is reputable for this hot topics. until then the stereotypes, shaming, hurt not just of Arab-Americans but every race will not stop.


My knowledge.


Created with images by Arooma - "mohammad amin mosque beirut mosque"

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