Newsflash: Muslims are actually not the religious group most likely to desire replacing the Constitution with their scripture.
At least, that’s according to a new poll released in March 2016, by The Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, a nonpartisan think-tank (who knew those still existed?). Aptly titled “The American Muslim Poll,” the study goes into detail about the political and societal lives of Muslims in America. As orientalist as it sounds, as Vox revealed, there are actually some pretty interesting findings.
First, with regards to the creeping sharia thing: It’s a myth. According to the survey conducted:
A whopping 82% of Muslims actually don’t think sharia law should be the law of the land, with 55% saying it shouldn’t be a source of American law at all.
In fact, the survey found that Protestants are actually the religious group most likely to favor their religion playing some role in American law – and even then, it’s only 12% of those who were polled.
Also, when it comes to law and the government in general, the study found that Muslims aren’t all that politically engaged – but we are incredibly involved in our communities. Further, contrary to common expectation, Muslims who go to mosques regularly are more likely to be active in the community.
But despite all of our work in the community, the study confirmed our fears, showing most Muslims are still falling victim to Islamophobia:
60% of Muslims in the survey reported that they have experienced religious discrimination within the past year – almost 20% reported this discrimination as occurring “regularly.”
Rather than leading to isolation and alienation, however, the study found we are not giving up, and we’re still (somehow) optimistic about life here in America.
More than half of us who have been discriminated against are even taking the extra step to go out of our way to prove that we aren’t extremists. A huge 55% of those who had reported facing discrimination regularly in the past year also reported becoming further involved in community activities.
And speaking of extremism: This poll proved that there are actually some Muslims who support Donald Trump. Yeah, you read that right – I did the whole double-take/silent-screaming thing too, but that doesn’t change the numbers. What’s more, not only are there Muslims who actually support Trump, but Trump also has the most support from Muslims out of all of the Republican candidates. Granted it’s a measly 4%, but he still trumps Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio (RIP), who polled at 2% and 1% respectively. The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) found similar results in their Super Tuesday poll.
But even with the rise of Islamophobia and the bigots that come with it – and our apparent (minimal, but still existent) support for said bigots – the poll found that Muslim Americans are still currently the most satisfied group there is.
So when it comes down to it, the biggest take-away from the ISPU poll is pretty simple – It’s proved once and for all that no matter how much of a blatant racist you are, Muslims will still see the best in you.