Zach Post #11 – Muslims in Italy & a”Muslim Problem”?

“Historically, Islam’s presence in Italy is not a novel phenomenon; it is rather a “return” (78 Hunter). Islam has been a part of Italy for a very long time, since the seventh century. Their history has been forgotten by many of the Italians. “Immigrants in the 1980’s and 90’s came to Italy from the Maghreb and Sub-Saharan Africa countries, plus Albania, Latin America, other Middle Eastern countries, and more recently Europe” (79 Hunter). This is when the Muslim immigrants came to Italy, they mostly came from Maghred, Africa, and the Middle East. These people “reintroduced Islam to Italy” (79 Hunter). Muslim immigration become organized and they started to set up mosques in cities. I believe that the reasons why the Muslim immigrant population in Italy is different from other European countries is because: Many of these immigrants are from different places before, many have come over at different times and they came at different ages, and there are a lot of people coming and going from Italy.

All religions that want to be recognized legally in Italy must have a system of agreements (Intesa). When these religions are recognized legally in Italy they gain juridical and economic advantages. The system of agreements (Intesa) was started in 1984. Many religious groups have signed Intesa’s and are legally recognized. But Islam is not recognized legally by Italy. Since 1990 the Muslims in Italy have been negotiating an agreement with Italy to have a Intesa. The Muslims in Italy have enough people to have an Intesa, because many smaller religious groups have gotten an Intesa. “An Intesa is not, juridically, a duty of the state but always a bilateral agreement with a particular religious’ community” (89 Hunter). This means an Intesa is not a thing that the government has to do, it is something they do if they want to. An Intesa is a political decision. There are many factors that there is not an Intesa with the Islamic community in Italy.

-Most Muslims in Italy are not Italian Citizens. They are immigrants that hope, one day to return to their country of origin.

– The number of Italians that have converted to Islam is very small.

– Culture differences, especially language. Arabic is the language of Islam and it makes Muslims appear separate from the rest because they speak a different language.

– The public awareness/media coverage of the negative people that are Muslim

 

According to Naveed Jamali the United States of America does not have a “Muslim Problem” and that Europe does have a problem. The main reason why Jamali believes that Europe has a “Muslim Problem” is because Europe does not know how to welcome and fully understand immigrants and this tension creates a way for ISIS to recruit people. The population in Europe and the population in the United States of America differ A LOT, there are 19 million Muslims in Europe and only 3.3 Million Muslims in the United States of America. But we need to take in percentages because more people live in Europe than in the United States. With this factored in, the Muslim Population in Europe is about 2.5%, and in the United States of America it is about 1%. These two numbers now do not seem too far from each other. So population is similar in the percent of people. The author (Jamali) might have some bias, because if he in like any other AMERICAN, he is PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN and he believes his county is the best, most powerful in the world.  One will always think his life or country is better than others, and it is always easy to find facts that you agree with and that will support you.

 

 

 

References:

HUNTER, Shireen T., and Charles BUCHANAN. Islam, Europe’s Second Religion: The New Social, Cultural and Political Landscape. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2002. Print.

 

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