You know the stories, by now: The violent attack on a cab driver, the arson in Tennessee, the sometimes unbelievable vitriol associated with a Manhattan Islamic community center. The plans by a radical pastor to burn the holy book of another religion, plans that have been condemned even by his compatriots on the fringe of American thought.
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But why? And why now?
"It's been percolating," John Esposito, the director of the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown, told TPM. As Esposito tells it, America has had a problem with anti-Muslim prejudice since before Sept. 11, 2001. But it was contained, in a way, and even after 9/11 "things were pretty stabilized." The uptick began in 2004, and now it's rising to the surface.