#MuslimsReportStuff still going strong after Trump, Clinton debate

The second presidential debate is continuing to create shockwaves on social media after it was broadcast live on Sunday. (File photo: AFP)

The second presidential debate is continuing to create shockwaves on social media after it was broadcast live on Sunday.

Following Donald Trump’s comments to a question about rising Islamophobia, Twitterati have taken to the platform all week, tweeting with the hashtag #MuslimsReportStuff.

The hashtag has been popularly used to highlight frustration by American Muslims at Trump’s request that Muslims who come into the country should be on alert and ready to report terrorist activity, dismissing Islamophobia altogether:

“I mean, whether we like it or not and we can be politically correct, but whether we like it or not, there is a problem. And we have to be sure that Muslims come in and report when they see something going on. When they see hatred going on, they have to report it,” Trump said.

His response was widely mocked across Twitter for not answering the related question to rising Islamophobia, which inspired the viral hashtag, #MuslimsReportStuff by social media users.

One of the first to strike a chord on Twitter was a tweet from Brooklyn College Professor Moustafa Bayoumi. In less than twenty-four hours, his tweet was retweeted 84k times and received 160k favorites. According to Twitter, it was the most popular tweet from the night of the debate.

According to analysis from CBS News, the tweet’s viral success “may lie in its mixture of cutting undertones and ostensibly lighthearted humor. It is a way of saying, “I’m offended,” without actually having to say it.”

What followed soon after Bayoumi’s tweet was a flow of tweets that have continued till today, utilizing the viral hashtag. Many American Muslim celebrities including comedians, writers and journalists have all been taking part in the hashtag, which has been amusingly reported by many of the major American news outlets such New York Times and Washington Post.

Speaking to Al Arabiya English, Saeed Khan who is lecturer at Near East & Asian Studies at Wayne State University, has been observing the social media reaction and explains how the Muslim response was a “swift” and “real-time affirmation of the Islamophobia that Trump has promoted and encouraged throughout the campaign.”

He adds: “As the candidate admonished Muslims to ‘report things,’ suggesting that they conceal extremists in their midst, Muslims took to Twitter to reclaim their narrative and their dignity with the hash tag #muslimsreportstuff.

“What ensued was an avalanche of sardonic comments about everything from the weather to movie reviews. Social media and the ability to go viral became the perfect, and ironic, medium for a rejoinder to an individual who lives but for the oxygen provided by his own Twitter feed and bigotry.”

The final presidential debate will be aired on American networks on October 19.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:47 - GMT 06:47
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