CAIR: AMERICAN MUSLIMS REJECT EXTREMES
The USA's estimated 2.4 million Muslims hold more moderate political views than Muslims elsewhere in the world and are mostly middle class and willing to adopt the American way of life, according to one of the most comprehensive surveys of this segment of the nation's population.
The Pew Research Center study released Tuesday found that "Muslim Americans are very much like the rest of the country," says Luis Lugo, director of the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. "They do not see a conflict between being a devout Muslim and living in a modern society."
Muslim Americans, however, have a much more negative view about the Iraq war and the war against terrorism than the U.S. public as a whole, the survey found. The study also found pockets of sympathy for Islamic extremism, especially among younger people. Muslims between the ages of 18 and 29 express significantly greater acceptance than older people of suicide bombings in some cases.
The young show a greater tendency to identify themselves as Muslim first and American second. This faith-first pattern is even more pronounced among Muslims in Europe, according to previous Pew surveys.
Muslims here "come across as much more moderate than the Muslim public in other areas of the world," says Andrew Kohut, president of the Pew Research Center. . .
The survey "clearly shows that the American Muslim community is well integrated in our society," says Ibrahim Hooper, communications director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a civil rights and advocacy group in Washington, D.C. "The overwhelming majority of American Muslims reject terrorism and religious extremism."