U.S. Muslims concerned about extremism

Stark differences exist between Muslim Americans and the general public on the subject of extremism

A new survey by the Pew Research Center reveals 82 percent of American Muslims are either extremely (66 percent) or a little (16 percent) concerned on matters relating to extremism committed in Islam's name. This is in tandem with the perception of the general United States public. The latter comes to about 83 percent.

Only about 17 percent of American Muslims say they are unconcerned about extremists taking the name of Islam when committing atrocities all over the world. For the general population, about 15 percent of the population expressed indifference. Both groups share an increasing concern about extremism. This concern rose by 10 percentage points compared to the last survey done by Pew in 2011. The subject at that time was U.S. Muslims too.

Muslims, like Americans overall, are increasingly concerned about global extremism in the name of Islam

When it comes to Muslim American women, there are worries concerning global extremism with Islam being the excuse. Almost 89 percent of Muslim women said they are concerned-even if a little- about Islamic extremism. This is an increase of 16 points from the last survey done in 2011. About 75 percent among the American Muslim male population feel the same.

Even though American Muslims showed less concern about Islamic extremism inside the United States, it was seen that they were extremely concerned about domestic extremism. Approximately 71 percent of U.S. Muslims say they are concerned about extremist activity done in the name of Islam. It is again seen that these concerns by American Muslims about extremist activity in the United States is near to the concerns exhibited by the general public. The latter shows 70 percent.

The Pew study throws up a number of interesting results. Although many Muslim Americans share concerns when it comes to Islamic extremism, only about 17 percent of them say that these extremist thoughts are present in Muslims already living inside the United States. When the data is parsed, it is seen that about six percent of U.S. Muslims believe that there is substantial support for Islamic terror among Muslims. About 11 percent believe that a fair amount of support among American Muslims. About 30 percent of the respondents said there is negligible or zero support (43 percent) for extremist activity among American Muslims.

When the general U.S. population is polled on the same subject, it is seen that most of them hold vastly different views. About 35 percent of the general public said that a significant proportion of Muslims in the United States support extremist views.


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