I concur with the April 24 op-ed column by Donald Hoffman that police officers should be educated on the potential threats posed to American society by extremists. But, I also hope that when interacting with American Muslims, officers bear in mind that violent ideologies are not characteristic of the American Muslim experience.
As an American convert who was influenced by the example set by Muslim neighbors, I can say that the experience of American Muslims is one of integration, participation and contribution to society. Precisely because of our faith, we volunteer with charitable organizations to better the lives of all. Finally, being so tightly woven into society, the American Muslim community has as much at stake in the fight against extremism as every American.
Justin L. Peyton
Director, civil rights, Council on American-Islamic Relations-Philadelphia