A National Strategy to Counter Islamophobia in the United States was announced by the White House on Wednesday.
Vice President Biden: “I campaigned for president to help heal America’s broken spirit. He is emphatic that racism and bigotry of any kind have no place in the United States. The communications secretary for the White House, Karine Jean-Pierre, put it bluntly: “Final.
According to a White House official, the strategy is the result of a joint effort between the Domestic Policy Council and the National Security Council, with the goal of developing a detailed and comprehensive plan to safeguard Muslims and those who may be targeted for being Muslim “because of their race, national origin, ancestry, or any other reason” from discrimination, hate, bigotry, and violence. The White House will work with nearby communities to formulate the plan.
Jean-Pierre remarked that Muslims and those who are mistaken for Muslims in the United States face a disproportionate number of hate-fueled attacks and other discriminatory occurrences. “Moving forward, the President, Vice President, and our entire Administration will continue working to ensure every American has the freedom to live their lives in safety and without fear for how they pray, what they believe, and who they are.”
The move comes as some of the largest Muslim American groups have attacked Vice President Biden’s attitude to the conflict, and as the number of civilian deaths in Israel’s fight with Hamas continues to rise in Gaza.
On Wednesday, the president visited Minnesota, a state with a large and increasing Muslim population, and pledged to keep up his advocacy for additional aid to Gaza and for Israel to abide by international conventions safeguarding civilians in conflict. However, polls have showed that Biden’s rating has dropped significantly among Muslim Americans in recent weeks, as anger grows over his handling of the Mideast problem.
Two attendees of a private meeting between the president and a group of Muslim American leaders last week told AWN that they had asked Biden to demonstrate more empathy for Palestinian lives after he had thrown doubt on civilian mortality estimates in Gaza.
Important Biden ally and Minnesota attorney general Keith Ellison told AWN on Wednesday that the president’s strong words on protecting civilians could “reduce the likelihood” of Israeli strikes like the one that destroyed part of the Jabalya refugee camp. Ellison is a Muslim American.
In response to a protester’s appeal for a ceasefire during a private fundraiser on Wednesday night, the president voiced support for a humanitarian halt to allow for the release of hostages in Gaza.
When asked about the call for a ceasefire, Biden remarked, “I understand the emotion,” but he did not go so far as to endorse it. This is a really difficult situation for Israel. The Muslim world finds it just as difficult to make sense of.
Some organisations, including those that spearheaded Biden’s 2020 door-to-door voter drives, have warned that the president’s strategy could become a political problem if he runs for reelection. Earlier Wednesday, local Muslim leaders started an effort to get Muslim American voters to withhold their support for Biden’s 2024 bid after he failed to embrace a ceasefire.