When we first learned that the suspects in the San Bernardino shootings were American Muslims, many within the American Muslim community spoke out against the horrific crime, including those here in the Bay Area.
NBC Bay Area's Pete Suratos spoke with a member of the Council on American Islamic Relations in Fremont on Friday. Sameena Usman says the events in San Bernardino are having an effect on Muslims in the Bay Area. Much like rest of America, they were disgusted with actions of the shooters in San Bernardino. While they pray for those who were affected, they're also praying for their own safety.
Usman says many in the Muslim community were disheartened by the events in San Bernardino. When they learned the suspects had the names Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, they felt it was important to immediately condemn the acts.
"The fact that these people claim to be Muslim, or have a Muslim sounding name, people tend to lump them up with the rest of the Muslim population," Usman said.
CAIR sent out a tweet the day of the shooting expressing condolences for the families of the victims. But, unfortunately, they're receiving hateful phone calls in return.
"Angry calls saying, 'When are you going to denounce terror?' And we're saying, 'Hello, we've denounced this over and over again.'"
Usman says it puts the local Muslim community in a familiar position: praying for those who were affected and also making sure their safe here at home.
Usman also mentioned that members of local mosques should keep a watchful eye for each other. And some mosques have even beefed up security.