Islam, the word in Arabic means submission. The believers of Islam are known as Muslims. Islam, like any other religions, teaches to be modest, humble, respectful, loyal, everything that are far less associated with Muslims by Americans, unfortunately.
Islam is a religion of peace. We Americans have a very biased and wrong perspective of Islam and this is simply because of the conjunction of religious and cultural values.
If I ask some non-Muslims what the first thing that comes in their mind about Muslims is, I am pretty much sure of the responses: terrorists, violent, murderers, insensitive, irresponsible, you name it basically.
On the contrary, Islam has nothing to do with any of those. In fact, killing and harming yourself and others have been prohibited strictly in Islam. Then why do the Muslims still kill each other?
The response is similar to asking a person who eats pork with no issues whatsoever even claiming to be Christian. It is simply one’s personal preference.
Likewise, those Muslims who kill and harm aren’t even considered Muslims anymore. They’re just Muslims by name sake not for the purpose of their creation. Islam clearly teaches to obey God’s commands in the holy book, Quran.
If you actually study the history and earlier sacred texts, you would fall in love with the teachings because Quran is the only book that has never been changed over the period of times. Its message and purpose has been intact throughout.
To answer your question, Americans have no idea how beautiful Islam is. They are basing their judgments solely on cultural aspects only.
For example, when an Arab commits a crime, he’s automatically presumed to be Muslim and terrorist in America. Why? Because this is what we’ve been teaching our children.
You absolutely cannot judge an entire faith off one person’s actions. Also speaking of current events like Israel refugee crisis, Rohingya refugee crisis in Bangladesh have been taking away innocent lives everyday by non-Muslims, but there’s no broadcasting or any sort of threat to those dominant groups in the U.S., one of the strongest and developed countries in the world.
Most of those news now only comes from social media like Facebook, twitter, Instagram etc.
Honestly speaking, I have been actively practicing Islam since childhood; I have never experienced discrimination in school, at workplace or any other social gatherings, thankfully.
That doesn’t mean that there aren’t others though, I have heard the worst nightmares of other’s lives about being discriminated at work or school or college; I can only speak for myself.