Arabs and African Americans: A complicated relationship between solidarity and bigotry

By | June 23, 2017

Arabs and African Americans appear to have a common struggle against white supremacy.

But when former State Rep. Rashida Tlaib participated in a protest demanding accountability for the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man by a Dearborn police officer in December 2015, she received disparaging messages from prominent members in the Arab American community.

“Why are you there? Why are you against Chief (Ronald) Haddad? This makes the Arabs look bad. You guys shouldn’t be there. This isn’t your issue,” Tlaib said she was told.

Tlaib was demonstrating after the death of Kevin Matthews. A month later, Dearborn Police fatally shot Janet Wilson, a black woman they accused of using her car as a weapon to run over an officer who stopped her.

“No one, I don’t care what color, what faith, should be dehumanized like that,” Tlaib told The Arab American News. (The Jewish News)

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