Topic: Media Research Center
Actor Riz Ahmed's complaint about "Islamophobic sentiment in the media" making it "really scary to be a Muslim right now" seriously set off Media Research Center writer Alexis Moutevelis Coombs -- to the point that she devoted a June 28 post to adding more Islamophobia to the media in a screed dedicated to shouting down Ahmed by insisting that, if anything, there isn't enough Islamphobia in the media and that Christians are the real victims:
Do you know where it is really, super scary to be a Muslim right now? In a Muslim nation where women aren’t allowed to work or go to school, where women face the threat of getting acid thrown in their faces or honor killings, and where everyone fears terrorism and persecution from their own government or another Islamic sect.
Did he seriously compare the U.S. wanting travel restrictions for a few Muslim-majority countries that have problems with terrorism and the U.K. voting to leave the European Union to Communist China’s human rights abuse of Uighur Muslims in real concentration camps?! The moral equivalence is astounding!
Ahmed encouraged the audience “to research how Muslims are represented on television and in movies in a data-driven, targeted, systemic way, so that ultimately Muslims aren’t only portrayed as terrorists or bogeymen.”
Having run MRC Culture’s On TV Blog for the last 4 years, I can tell you it is 100 percent false to claim Muslims are “only” portrayed as terrorists or bogeymen. In fact, Hollywood often bends over backwards to turn this stereotype on its head with storylines featuring positive Muslim characters in key roles – including a Muslim superhero, and innocent Muslims framed by white terrorists or victimized by evil racists -- including an innocent Guantanamo Bay detainee.
But Ahmed wasn’t done. “I think lives are quite literally at stake here,” he went on. “The representation of Muslims on screen — that feeds the policies that get enacted, the people that get killed, the countries that get invaded.”
In what world does he think decisions about policies and war are made because of how Hollywood portrays Muslims? The only representation of Muslims on screen that ever did that was the tv footage of 19 Islamist terrorist hijackers crashing planes in New York, Virginia, and Pennsylvania on 9/11.
Meanwhile, Christians are the most persecuted religious in the world. With how hateful they are towards Christianity, maybe it’s time Hollywood reconsiders its representation of Christians on screen.
Coombs has pulled a fine combination of outrage and victimization. The MRC must be proud.