Following the all-night manhunt for the suspects late Thursday and early Friday, mosques across the country were on high security for Friday prayer services. Boston’s main mosque, the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center, took the unprecedented step of closing its doors Friday and urging congregants to remain home, partially because of the lockdown taking place in the area. (Friday congregational prayers are mandatory for Muslim men.)
Still, reports of reprisals spread, with two of the sources reached for this story reporting vandalism and break-ins at their local mosques. Also, as was widely reported in the Muslim press, a Bangladeshi man was beaten up outside a Bronx Applebee’s restaurant. And in Malden, Mass., a man approached a Muslim woman heading with her daughter in a stroller to a play date, punched her in the shoulder, and shouted, “F--- you Muslims! You are terrorists! I hate you! You are involved in the Boston explosions! F--- you!”
For many Muslims, this is an ugly, if expected, side effect of the attack, and one that brings increasing frustration.
“We are the ones standing up and condemning these horrific acts, ostracizing these cowardly men, and disclaiming them as part of our flock,” Mr. Ba-Yunus writes. “But we bear the brunt of the public's outrage, and it's simply not fair.”
The attack itself was “a stab in chest,” and now “I feel as though I’m stabbed in the back to be looked at in that way, to be under suspicion,” says Nadine Abu-Jubara, the Orlando, Fla.-based executive director of Nadoona, an Islamically oriented health and fitness organization. She adds, “We’re in this, too, we’re grieving, too. We’re just as upset with [whomever] did it."