A spike in anti-Muslim incidents in 2016 can be blamed in part on the "Islamophobic rhetoric" of public figures like Republican nominee Donald Trump says a Muslim rights group.
The Council on American-Islamic Relation released a preliminary report Thursday that warns this year is on track to become one of the worst ever for anti-mosque incidents that "have been violent in tone, characterized by intimidation, physical assault and property damage, destruction or vandalism." As of mid-September, CAIR claims there have been 55 such episodes, with an "alarming majority" being violent in nature. There were 79 incidents in 2015, according to the group.
CAIR points to a spike in reported cases in June and July following the Pulse Nightclub mass shooting in Orlando, Fla., by a man who was raised as a Muslim, as well as a cluster of incidents on and around Sept. 11. The group also name dropped Trump as someone who deserves credit for the rise in mischief.