STEELTON, Pa. (WHTM) – Community leaders and members of the Islamic Society of Greater Harrisburg are speaking out after the mosque in Steelton was sent a letter filled with hate.
It begins, “To The Children of Satan,” and goes on to describe Muslims as vile and filthy people.
The letter is the same letter sent to several mosques across the country, but that offers zero comfort to members in Steelton.
“I really hope it’s not some kind of concerted group effort that is going on and now we have some local members of this group, but I can’t exclude that either,” Atizaz Monsoor said.
“Why did they pick a small out-of-the-way city? I wouldn’t be surprised if they go to Texas or California or New York, but why did they come to Pennsylvania? It just boggles my mind,” Samia Malik said.
Members spoke about other recent incidents they have experienced locally as well. In one, girls were targeted and verbally harassed for wearing hijabs. In another, members say two teen boys were told “we’re watching you,” while they were held at knifepoint.
Malik hopes the letter can start a conversation. She hopes anyone with questions about their faith will come to them and ask.
“We’re no different than any other faith. We’re about love, all faith is about loving each other and being there for each other and we’re no different,” Malik said.
Steelton police have increased their patrols in the area around the mosque. The letter is being investigated by the postal inspector, and it could be handed over to the FBI.