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Pitts: Obama must confront Muslim issue

Miami Herald columnist Leonard Pitts says Barack Obama needs to address his campaign's "standoffishness toward American Muslims.

"Until Sept. 11, 2001, that community was poised for assimilation, poised to submerge itself in the American mainstream like the Jews, Irish and Italians before them," Pitts writes. "The actions of a handful of their co-religionists on that fateful day wrecked that trajectory beyond recognition and unleashed something base and ugly in the American character.

"Muslims were snatched from the threshold of acceptance, painted once again as the alien and vaguely threatening Other. Can you imagine how that must feel? It is galling and painful to see yourself reduced to a caricature based on someone else's fears."

"And Barack Obama should know that better than most."

Read the full column here.