September 11 on the Muslim population in Greater Toronto area
This is a paper that analyzes the effects of September 11 on the Muslim population of Toronto. It has sources.
The following is a study that reveals the effects of the terrorist attacks of September 11 on the Muslim population in Greater Toronto area. As there has been severe impact on western societies ever since the disaster, it is worth exploring the how Muslims are being treated in places like Toronto Canada. First of all, this area is an interesting one because it is an immediate neighbor of the United States. Secondly, Canadian society is based on democratic principles. Both these factors are strong influences on the manner in which citizens of Canada are treated in relation to the religious beliefs. It may be assumed through reports and accounts that come through the media that there are some individuals who are being targeted based on certain grounds. It must be asserted here that Canada is a country that is multicultural, and has never indulged in targeting particular groups in its society. Its unbiased stance on international issues too has earned it such a reputation. However, according to studies there is need to reassess the manner in which marginalization may have occurred as an effect of September 11 (McGowan, 30-50).
What are the effects of September 11 on the Muslim population in Greater Toronto area?
The effects of September 11 are the marginalization of the Muslim population, through denial of democratic rights. The freedom of speech, human rights violation, discrimination, media reflection, distrust in democracy, thinking of approving of radical movements, etc. are all part and parcel of the effects of September 11.
The democracy that has prevailed for years in Canada has built up confidence in the people living there. This includes those individuals who have been born and bred there, and also those who have settled there. Since Canada is a land where many have wanted to settle in because of its multicultural society coupled by democracy that guarantees safety, there have been many individuals who have traveled there in order to lead better lives. However, it is said that things have changed in certain areas on Canada. In particular, the greater Toronto area is one where there have been several cases regarding the issue of segregation. Individuals who have had ties with certain religious Islamic groups have been targeted. Not only are they likely to be targeted with in Canada, but they may also be detained when they travel to the U.S. It is because of this kind of action that one needs to ask whether there is an agreement between Canada and the United States in pursuing terrorist suspects. It must be realized at this point that soon after 3000 lives were claimed on September 11, Canada joined in the War on Terrorism without much hesitation. This would naturally mean that the Canadian government saw eye-to-eye with the U.S. government in going into a war that would last years, targeting its own citizens (Roach, 20-25).
In order to trace out terrorists within its own society, the United States developed a policy according to which they would be able to carry out necessary measures.
In the aftermath of the terrorist attacks of September 11th on the WTC, in the United States a bill was passed through congress that barely took a month of proper consideration. Instead of handling situations in a logical manner so that the people do not panic unnecessarily, the government has given the people more reason to be upset. This is because the citizens of America no longer have their rights protected, and the federal agencies now have the rights to disrupt the life of any peace-loving and honest citizen whenever they have reason to. Following in these footsteps is the Canadian government that has also put its security forces on alert (Kassam, 35-50).
People are not only on the lookout for terrorists but are now afraid of the unnecessary harassment that they may be subjected to because of misconceptions on the part of the law enforcement agencies. Such incidents have taken place, for instance, innocent Arabic conversations held between students have been misunderstood for terrorist plans (Day, 45-55).
It is commonly known that people have been arrested through no fault of their own, and detained indefinitely. The question to be asked here is 'why should the citizens, who were given to be understand that they were free, suffer for the incompetence of the law enforcement agencies? Cannot they perform their duties without pestering the public who want to live in peace? The answers to these questions are pretty obvious, and this is because of the fact that there was evidently an abyss of communication between organizations in the law enforcement setup that led to the terrorists worming their way through security. It is because these agencies not paying proper attention to certain events prior to the terrorist attacks that the common man in the U.S., and therefore Canada suffers today (Mitchell, A1).
Students from other countries in Canada are now afraid to mix around too much or converse with other students who might get them into trouble. This is especially the case with Muslim students in Canada. In the United States too, the situation is no different, as it origin of students being targeted. Though, according to the Patriot Act in the United States it is emphasized that Muslims in America should not be targeted, it seems to be an unwritten rule that if a person is a Muslim s/he cannot be trusted. The sentiments are almost the same in Canada, where religious leaders must prove that they are moderates and not extremists. Is there any sense in making an individual confess that s/he is a moderate of extremist? Would a terrorist really expose him or herself if questioned in such a manner? (Biles, 44-67).
Though in Canada there is no patriot act for law enforcement agencies to adhere to, the CSIS and the RCMP act independent of such an act. If anyone individual even has an inquiry made at his or her place of work from these kinds of agencies, the individual is most likely to be fired immediately. This is because of the fear that has now set in, as a result of the free hand of the law. In addition to this, it is also unheard of for any Muslim youth to even join such agencies or even consider joining their local police service or commercial aviation. This does not just go for Muslims but also anyone who might happen to look like an Arab (Toronto Police Service, 2001).
People who appear to be of Arab origin or at least happen to speak Arabic are natural suspects. The reason why people too have become more conscious of race and religion now is largely due to the fact that the Patriot Act has magnified the situation, and in way, fostered hate towards the Arab world. Though one cannot deny the fact that there is a need to be aware of terrorist movements, one must also be ready to accept that if the citizens of the U.S. were not harassed by the law so much they would not be conscious of who is and who isn't a Muslim.
Issues of religion tend to get even more sensitive when the personal finance of people gets affected in any way. Now that the Patriot Act allows the law enforcement agencies the rights to intrude one's personal financial records, personal life may be disrupted if a person fails to explain the direction of his or her expenditure. The agencies may want to know exactly at what time a large some of money left an account and for what purpose it was used. But in a free country a person should not be subjected to this kind of torture (Page, A7).
In a Democratic country, one should have the right to keep his or her financial life secret, and it is no business of anyone's where the finance has been spent. It will be another matter altogether if there was enough evidence to prove that a particular amount of money was spent for terrorist activity. Since some people are constantly being monitored because of their transactions and actions, they feel that they are genuinely being denied freedom. It is important to understand the way that they feel about being targeted as Muslims, particularly when they have endeavored citizenship in a democratic country like Canada (Saloojee, A15).
In addition to reports and studies that have been carried out on Muslim population in Toronto, it is a good idea for one to develop an independent inquiry. This would include direct questions put to participants, who would be guarantees confidentiality.
It is important to emphasize on the importance of questioning the subjects first hand so that one may be able to obtain the most authentic result. Responses to questions will be recorded in…[continue]
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