WEEK THIRTEEN Post #11
- How does the Muslim immigrant population in Italy differ from that in other European countries? What factors have contributed to the lack of an “intesa” with the Islamic community in Italy?
The Muslim immigrant population in Italy differs from that in other European countries for the reason they came. Indeed, many came to France or Germany to rebuild the countries after World War II. They mostly came as temporary workers but then instead of going back to their home country they stayed in the country where they worked, got the citizenship and then build families. Now, France and Germany have three or four generations of Muslim immigrants who came after the war. However, the Muslims came to Italy to work or get an education.
Also, every religion in Italy can have an “Intesa” in order to be recognized. However, there are some barriers which keeps Italian to be fully integrated. Indeed, the language, their culture and the fact that many Muslims don’t have the Italian citizenship. So, as far as Italian authorities are concerned, Islam doesn’t exist. This means that mosques cannot receive public funds, Islamic weddings have no legal value and Muslim workers aren’t entitled to take days off for religious holidays.
- Jamali reading: Why does the U.S. not have a “Muslim problem” when comparing to Europe? How does the Muslim population in the U.S. differ from that in Europe? What biases might this author have? What has changed since the article was published?
According to the reading, the U.S doesn’t have a Muslim problem, mainly thanks to the integration of the Muslim population there. According to the Pew Research Center there are 3.3 million (or 1% of the population) Muslims living in the US which represents a smaller percentage than in the European countries. When people integrate and assimilate to their new country people see them less as different or as a group that doesn’t want to blend in. What helps to be assimilated is also education, as written in the paper the Muslims there are very well educated and then get better jobs opportunities which make them happier to live there whereas in Europe immigrants are coming and even though they have access to education, they do not have access to the high position in companies so their position doesn’t evolve.
In the US, they can probably feel Muslim and American both at the same time and be proud of it. There is a real sense of patriotism for Muslim American that doesn’t really exist in Europe (display of flags) which make them more accepted than in Europe.
The author might be biased because he is speaking about his own family and he then doesn’t have many examples. Each family might have different experiences which can be good or bad.
Also, I think it is important to note that the US is a new country, that most of the people who came were from Europe and created a melting pot of people, who ended up being American + another nationality. First, these people came because the US offered a freedom of religion. Whereas in Europe, countries have more history and each of them have their own nationality, culture and language so it is hard to compare both of them only based on the integration.
What might have changed since the publication of the article is the political mood. More terrorist attack happened people are starting to be scared about Muslim population and the new President is contributing to these false ideas that we must stop immigration coming from Muslims countries (some of them), so people might become more racist toward the Muslim population.