Daily whine: Across North Carolina, Muslim Students Take Stock of a Trying Semester

On the campus of the University of North Carolina here — and at nearby North Carolina State University — memories of the February killings of three young Muslims still linger.

The iconic symbol of the tragedy — black-and-white outlines of the victims’ heads and hijabs, with the tagline “Our Three Winners” — is still displayed on students’ Facebook profile pictures. There’s been a steady stream of charity events, including food drives and basketball tournaments. A scholarship fund has been set up to honor the victims. And there have been many moments of silence.

But as time passes, students — particularly Muslims who knew the victims — are left grappling with difficult questions: How could this have happened here? How does our religion fit on the campus? Is there a way to move on?…

…The motive surrounding the killings remains uncertain. Mr. Hicks’s wife said they stemmed from a longstanding parking dispute, but her husband had a history of anti-religious invective, and many observers have viewed the killings as a hate crime driven by Islamophobia…

…Even before the killings, it had been a difficult semester for Muslim students throughout the state of North Carolina.

Students and administrators at Wake Forest University had already rallied behind the associate chaplain for Muslim life, Khalid Griggs, after an alumnus waged a fierce campaign accusing him of being a radical jihadist.

Then, in January, Duke University announced that it would broadcast a Muslim call to prayer from the bell tower of the campus’s iconic Duke Chapel. Immediately after the announcement, Franklin Graham, the Christian evangelist, condemned the decision, calling on donors and alumni to withhold financial support from the university…

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