Even before the election, the U.S. was seeing a spike in hate crimes against Muslims.
Hate crimes -- which the FBI defines as any crime such as assault or vandalism with the added element of bias -- targeting Muslims surged 67 percent last year, from 154 incidents in 2014 to 257 in 2015, the second highest number on record since 1992 when the U.S. began tracking these crimes, according to the latest statistics published Monday by the F.B.I.
Then there are the slurs that may not rise to the level of a crime.
Asma-Inge Hanif, founder of Muslimat Al Nisaa Shelter, a Baltimore-area shelter for Muslim women seeking refuge from violence, extremism, and religious persecution, said many women who have come to her shelter have recounted being harassed about their hijabs in recent months and told to “take that rag off.”
Hanif, like others who spoke to ABC News for this story, likened the experience of Muslims in the U.S. today to discrimination against African-Americans.
Asma Inge Hanif escorting a woman into the Muslimat Al Nisaa Shelter, a homeless shelter for Muslim women that Hanif runs as a home.
Hanif is African-American, a convert to Islam, and among the third of all U.S. Muslims who are black, according to Pew’s 2015 Religious Landscape Study.
“If someone can attack you based on the color of your skin, and now someone can attack you because you’re Muslim, you have no idea how angry someone can be or what they would actually do. That’s why there’s a whole element of fear," Hanif said.
“It’s reminiscent of being in the South and a black man running,” Hanif said. "You could be running, and someone would see you and say, ‘You must be guilty,’ because you were running. And now the women are feeling similar: 'You must be guilty because you are Muslim.'”
She hopes that the divisive presidential election and Trump’s victory will raise awareness among light-skinned Muslims of the need to see themselves as part of a larger fight for civil rights.
“Now they realize we need to join with those who have already gone through this and learn from their experience,” Hanif said.
Asma Inge Hanif, an African-American Muslim convert, in Baltimore, Maryland.
"The main thing African-Americans did not do is we did not give up ... I would say the same thing to the Muslims who are here, to not give up," Hanif said.
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