Less than 24 hours after at least 11 people were killed when a gunman opened fire at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, two Muslim-American groups jointly raised more than $40,000 for the victims of the shooting, The Hill reports.
Started on Muslim-focused crowdfunding site LaunchGood by Celebrate Mercy and MPower Change, the campaign aims to “help with the immediate, short-term needs of the injured victims and grieving families – including funeral expenses and medical bills.”
The groups have partnered with the Islamic Center of Pittsburgh, which will distribute the funds to the victims’ families.
As detailed by a previous Inquisitr report, what are thought to be the alleged shooter Robert Bowers’s social media accounts indicate that he is a rabid anti-Semite, who bought into and spread baseless conspiracy theories often propagated by many prominent individuals on the American right, President Trump included.
One such theory states that the billionaire philanthropist George Soros is behind the migrant caravan approaching the United States’ Southern border.
Anti-Semitic and Islamophobic conspiracy theories appear to overlap in quite a few ways, even among the highest-ranking members of the Trump administration.
Despite lack of evidence, both President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence promoted a baseless, xenophobic conspiracy theory that Middle Easterners are sneaking into the United States, traveling together with thousands of South Americans to the United States via Mexico, according to Business Insider.
Even though Jew-Muslim relations are often thought to be turbulent, a 2018 study by the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding (FFEU) shows that things are not nearly as bad as they seem, at least when it comes to the United States.
According to the FFEU, the gaps between Muslim and Jewish communities in the United States are much smaller than previously thought. Both communities are optimistic that Americans can be more tolerant, have similar opinions on a number of issues, and often cooperate in various areas.
Celebrate Mercy and MPower Change’s LaunchGood crowdfunding campaign is perhaps a testament to that.
“Through this campaign, we hope to send a united message from the Jewish and Muslim communities that there is no place for this type of hate and violence in America,” the Muslim groups’ crowdfunding page reads. “We pray that this restores a sense of security and peace to the Jewish-American community.”
Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Glenn Greenwald pointed out via Twitter that the initial goal of the crowdfunding campaign was to raise $25,000. But since that goal has been quickly reached, the groups aim to raise $50,000.