Like never before, Islam has become one of the hottest topics in the United States, and it has even permeated heavily into our politics. On the forefront of this subject is Donal Trump, who has been making bold and controversial statements like no presidential front runner in memory. Trump’s statements have brought forward both cheers and disgust from millions around the country. I’ll be looking at how the media has been reporting on his remarks, and how his beliefs could affect our country at large.
Before we jump into his comments and the media, let’s take a look at Trump himself. Donald Trump has taken this nation by storm. He has surged forth to become the Republican frontrunner, and he is now in prime position to secure his party’s nomination. His face is the first shown on the news every night. The billionaire is running a campaign against the so called establishment, and has been winning voters’ hearts by ‘saying it like it is.’ And without a doubt, Trump has been forgoing political correctness to make his opinions noticed.
Trump has been making comments that have not only been condemned by Muslims, but by even the party he is running for. “I think Islam hates us.” “They’re(Muslims) not coming to this country if I’m president.” These two statements alone have spurred forth countless articles in the media, and the majority of which were, as expected, very negative. Each of the ten articles I’ve analyzed focused on these comments that he made.
If you start by looking at the titles of each of the articles, you can quickly see the common trend. Negative words are used consistently like hate, attack, and frightening. Immediately, before even reading the articles, you’re receiving a negative message about what is covered. The prime example is the article from NBC News titled “Donald Trump Attacks Muslims: ‘Islam Hates Us.’” This article goes on to mention racism and shows quotes supporting their view from Clinton and Sanders condemning his words. The article from Yahoo news has a statement from a Muslim advocacy group stating “These remarks are completely outrageous, they endanger the lives of ordinary American Muslims.” Four other of the articles analyzed had similar quotes from other Muslim groups. Many of these articles are strongly condemning the words of Donald Trump, and some are showing his political rivals in a much more positive light.
Many of the articles appear to be trying to help the Republican Party separate itself from Trump as well. The article from the Mirror news site has statements from all of the other GOP frontrunners at the time it was written condemning his statements and saying positive things about Muslims in general. Regardless of who the articles are supporting, they all seem to be isolating Donal Trump.
The only article that didn’t have either an outright or more concealed negative view was that from FiveThirtyEight. It shows some statistics showing that the majority of Muslim countries view the US unfavorably, but the majority of them also think a closer relationship with the West would be an overall benefit to their country. Unlike the other articles, FIveThirtyEight also shows that it’s important to consider that Donald Trump is in fact doing extremely successful in the polls here, which I think goes to show many Americans share the same views on this matter as him. It’s not hard to imagine why they would either. It seems everyday in the news we see something on ISIS or any other terror attack, and we are shown pictures of Muslims. Muslim extremists and radicals. But, rarely are we shown the Muslims living next door to us trying to live their lives as good citizens.
Whether or not you agree with anything Donald Trump has been saying about Islam, it’s important to look at the overall message his speech and the media’s responses have been sending, and the conversations that they have been starting. I think that Muslims reading these articles would feel conflicted. Obviously seeing the words said by Donald Trump would be very frightening and offending. However, I think they will be able to gain some confidence back after reading an article like the one Dean Obeidallah wrote in the The Daily Beast. Dean asks whether Trump thinks all of the Muslims that have died serving in our military hate the US, and what about the congressmen elected by the citizens? The point Dean is making in his article, alongside Moghul’s article on CNN, is that Trump is making statements that are judging millions of people based off of a few radical groups. The message Muslims receive from these articles is also very important. If Muslims around the world see Trump making statements like these and believe he speaks for all of America, then someday they may in fact hate us. The media and the message it sends will help shape the future of America’s relations with Muslims, and the media at large is condemning these statements made by Donald Trump.
Bruton, Brinley. “‘Islam Hates Us’: Trump Attacks Muslims … Again.” NBC News. N.p., 10 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2016-election/donald-trump-attacks-muslims-islam-hates-us-n535656>.
Crilly, Rob. “Donald Trump on Muslims: ‘They’re Not Coming to This Country If I’m President'” The Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group, 16 Dec. 2015. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/republicans/12052760/republican-debate-donald-trump-las-vegas.html>.
Evans, Natalie. “Donald Trump ‘Islam Hates America’ Claims Slammed by Republican Rivals at Unusually Civilised GOP Debate – Mirror Online.” Mirror. N.p., 11 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/donald-trump-islam-hates-america-7536313>.
Flores, Reena. “Donald Trump: “I Think Islam Hates Us”” CBSNews. CBS Interactive, 10 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <http://www.cbsnews.com/news/donald-trump-i-think-islam-hates-us/>.
“GOP Debate: Donald Trump Defends ‘Islam Hates Us’ Stance.” FOX8. Fox, 10 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <http%3A%2F%2Ffox8.com%2F2016%2F03%2F10%2Fgop-debate-donald-trump-defends-islam-hates-us-stance%2F>.
“Group Asks Trump to Apologize for Saying ‘Islam Hates Us’ | Fox News.” Fox News. FOX News Network, 10 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <http://www.foxnews.com/us/2016/03/10/group-asks-trump-to-apologize-for-saying-islam-hates-us.html>.
Libresco, Leah. “Donald Trump’s Sweeping Statements On Islam Are In Line With GOP Opinions.” FiveThirtyEight. N.p., 10 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/donald-trumps-sweeping-statements-on-islam-are-in-line-with-gop-opinions/>.
Moghul, Haroon. “Trump’s Comments on Islam Are Frightening.” CNN. Cable News Network, 11 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <http://www.cnn.com/2016/03/10/opinions/trump-islam-hates-us-comment-opinion-moghul/>.
Obeidallah, Dean. “No, Trump, Islam Doesn’t Hate America.” The Daily Beast. Newsweek/Daily Beast, 10 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/03/10/no-trump-islam-doesn-t-hate-america.html>.
Stableford, Dylan. “Donald Trump: ‘Islam Hates Us'” Donald Trump: ‘Islam Hates Us’ Yahoo!, 10 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016. <https://www.yahoo.com/news/trump-islam-hates-us-153325959.html>.