'Muslims Should Tell on Each Other' Isn't a Lesson We Plan to Teach Our Kids (Sorry, Trump)

Donald Trump debate

Sunday night, I found myself going back and forth between the presidential debate, the NFL game, and whatever reality show was on at the time. And sadly, the presidential debate was filled with more craziness than any episode of The Real Housewives of New Jersey. (Sorry, Teresa.) I couldn't believe some of the stuff I heard -- especially Donald Trump calling on Muslims to report on each other. Aside from being completely ludicrous, I can't help but think about what type of message this sends to our children ...

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Thankfully, my 2- and 1-year-old boys were sleeping and missed the opportunity to hear such vile rhetoric (unless Elmo was there, they wouldn't have cared about the debate anyway).

Regrettably, I know many moms and dads who let their kids watch this debate ...

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I sat in horror as I watched a potential leader of this nation utter words from his mouth that isolated Muslims:

We have to be sure that Muslims come in and report when they see something going on. When they see hatred going on, they have to report it .... Muslims have to report the problems when they see them.

... If they don't do that, it's a very difficult situation for our country.

As much as I'm down with, "If you see something, say something," would it not be better for all of us to report on potential threats?

... Or do we still think that everyone who practices Islam is to blame for all crime and terrorism?

For those of the Islamic faith to be singled out in such a way that only greenlights more prejudice and more discrimination -- well, that is something we should not encourage anyone to do, let alone our children.

Because I'm black (I don't live in the inner city, so maybe I don't count to Mr. Trump), should my children only report about "black" issues they see black people doing?

How does this reiterate community and teach our children to care about one another -- regardless of religion, race, sexual orientation, or whatever so many try to use to divide?

Is this truly the formula to help "make America great again?"

I don't think so.

You see, I am raising my kids to give a damn about everyone, and that includes you, your babies, and the people you call loved ones. This country is already divided enough, and rather than instruct my boys to only focus on "their own," I want them to be concerned about the well-being of all people.

Thankfully, I'm not the only one who thought something like this was foolish. Many Muslims took to Twitter with #MuslimsReportStuff, a witty clap-back that points out the absurdity of such a recommendation.

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I have friends who are Muslim and can only imagine what their children experience on a daily basis. From classmates assuming they're responsible for ISIS, to being made out to be a bad person -- because of their faith -- I think enough is enough.

I don't ever want my children thinking a particular group of people need to police each other, in order to prevent terrorism or for any other reason. Because when you remove fear and assumption, it allows you to open your heart to amazing friendships.

Even if we don't all see eye to eye on politics (I'm an Independent, for the record), I would hope we, as parents, will teach our kids that Islamophobia is not the way.

(You can also teach them that Muslims aren't responsible for most terrorism in the US, but we can save that lesson for another day.)

I'm looking at you, Donald.

 

 

Image via WashingtonPost.com

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