Study Finds American Muslims Cautiously Optimistic

WASHINGTON (CN) – Despite being worried about discrimination and Donald Trump’s presidency, Muslims in the U.S. continue to believe in the American dream, according to a new study from the Pew Research Center.

Of the 1,001 adults questioned by the Washington-based public polling institution, 89 percent said they are proud to be American Muslims, even though a large majority – 75 percent – feel that discrimination continues to be a problem.

The Muslim population has grown to 3.3 million people living in the United States, with 82 percent being recognized as American citizens.

Some of the main issues American Muslims say they face today include prejudice, misconceptions of Islam, being viewed as terrorists, negative media portrayals and the current president’s policies.

Regardless, Muslims are generally satisfied with their daily life and feel that they are in fair or better financial shape, according to the study released Wednesday.

About 80 percent of Muslims say they are happy with their lives and 70 percent are confident that they can “get ahead through hard work” and achieve the American dream.

The lengthy survey is broken down into several sections covering everything from political views and religious beliefs, to the American Muslim’s experience navigating through the Trump era so far.

Another Pew poll also recently found half of American adults don’t consider Islam to be a part of “mainstream American society.” As a result, 69 percent of those surveyed said that Muslims in the U.S. face more discrimination than people of other races, religions or sexual orientation.

“In general, Americans continue to express mixed views of both Muslims and Islam,” according to Pew.

However, there are still quite a few things that Muslims and the general public agree on, Wednesday’s study found. Both groups said that being a good parent is more important than living a religious life or being successful in their careers. They also agree that Trump’s leadership practices are worrisome, as is the threat of worldwide Islamic extremism.

President Trump had a 65 percent disapproval rating from Muslims, which is only 10 percent more than the general public’s disdain with his job performance, the Pew survey found.

The same study noted that 69 percent of Muslims disapproved of President George W. Bush in 2007, while only 14 percent disapproved of President Barrack Obama in 2011.

Telephone interviews for the survey were conducted with American Muslim adults between Jan. 23 and May 2 of this year. In addition to English, the survey was also offered in Arabic, Farsi and Urdu.

The poll was designed to establish a rapport with the respondents who come from at least 75 nations, before delving into sensitive subjects. As a token of appreciation, those who completed the roughly 33-minute survey were sent $50.

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