An ongoing threat from extremists has put Muslims at the center of a nationwide debate.
It’s one presidential candidates and even Superior Mayor Bruce Hagen have weighed in on, and on Sunday evening, that same political debate was playing out in the streets of Superior.
On the corner of Hammond Avenue and Belknap Street, signs covered in pink and red hearts might have seemed like poster-sized Valentine’s. In a way, they were.
Michelle Naar-Obed was holding a sign that said “Love thy Muslim neighbor.” She said she couldn’t think of a better way to spread Valentine’s day love, than to show solidarity for a group who needs it.
“Right now particularly we’re seeing so much hatred and so much fear of the Middle East countries and of Muslims,” Naar-Obed said. “That fear mongering–the big call is from our politicians who monopolize on making us afraid of each other.”
On the opposite side of the street, another group staged an opposing viewpoint. Ryan Avila and a group of about a half dozen friends held signs that said “Trump/Hagen”
“We heard about another protest by these fine folks over here and basically what we’re out here doing is just showing the other side of the coin,” Ryan Avila said. “I don’t have a problem with diversity, to take a stance against diversity, well that would just be ignorant.”
It was politics at its roots with drivers honking and giving waves and thumbs up as votes for one side or the other.
Bob Kosuth helped organized the Valentine’s Day Vigil called “Love Diversity/Hate Islamaphobia.” He said all too often, issues like one can become emotionally charged.
By Heidi Enninga of 10/30 abc
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