I don’t blame Indian Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan for feeling “angry and humiliated” for being detained and questioned at a U.S. airport. Khan is one of India’s best-known actors (he was named by Newsweek last year as one of the world’s 50 most powerful men) and was en route to Chicago for a parade to mark the Indian independence day on Saturday when he was pulled aside at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey on Friday. After a couple of hours’ interrogation, he was allowed to make a call, he said, and he got in touch with the Indian consulate who vouched for him and secured his release. Ironic, seeing as he’d just finished a monthlong shoot in the U.S. for his film “My Name Is Khan,” which is about a Muslim who suffers from Asperger syndrome who is arrested as a suspected terrorist in post-9/11 Los Angeles after the authorities mistake his disability for suspicious behaviour. Not surprisingly, the actor’s fans are mad. Some have even taken to burning the U.S. flag in protest. Justified? Maybe, maybe not. But I doubt this will do anything to help the animosity some people in the U.S. already feel toward Muslims.
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