These stats will help put the troubling spike in anti-Muslim hate crimes in context.

As the Jerusalem Post noted, the most recent FBI hate crime stats for 2015 showed that a shocking 53.3 percent of the religiously motivated hate crimes (or 664 incidents) were directed at Jews, who make up less than 2 percent of the population.

A report titled ‘Islamophobic attacks in US are now as high as post 9/11 levels’ was published on Nov. 22nd at i100 (The Independent’s BuzzFeed style brand).

The article, based on recent FBI hate crime statistics, by i100 contributor Louis Dore, correctly reports that there were 91 anti-Muslim assaults in 2015, up from 51 such assaults the previous year and nearly the same number reported for the year of the 9/11 attacks.

Of course, even one act of anti-Muslim violence is one too many, and any such statistical increase should be taken seriously.

However, the i100 report neglected to put the number in context.  

Religious based hate crimes against Muslims are far less common than such crimes against Jews – based on the most recent FBI report, as well as statistics going back to 1996.

hate-crimes
FBI’s Religious-Based Hate Crime Statistics (Graph from Jewish Virtual Library)

As the Jerusalem Post noted, the most recent FBI hate crime stats for 2015 showed that 53.3% of all religiously motivated hate crimes (664 incidents) were directed at Jews, despite the fact that Jews make up less than 2% of the US population.  Indeed, prior years’ reports similarly show that Jews are consistently the victims of a highly disproportionate percentage of all religious-based hate crimes.

These numbers on the state of antisemitism in the US are quite interesting given the fact that – by any measure – Jews in America are thriving and, arguably, enjoy a degree of freedom and safety unparalleled anywhere else in the diaspora.

Similarly, despite the worrying uptick in anti-Muslim hate crimes, research has demonstrated that Muslims in America are generally thriving, and in fact mirror the broader U.S. population in educational and economic achievement levels.

The point isn’t that such hate crimes – and other perceived threats to the Muslim-American community – should be dismissed, only that the often hysterical media narrative framing Muslims as a beleaguered and oppressed minority facing a ‘tidal wave of Islamophobia’ have (based on the empirical evidence) very little basis in fact.

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