Polling calls to US Muslims raise fears after Trump's win

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon

Muslims across the United States feared they were being targeted for surveillance this week when they received automated polling calls asking them to press one if they identified as Muslim or two if they did not.

Many worried President-elect Donald Trump was making good on his campaign promise to register all Muslims in the country or private citizens were laying the groundwork for a registry.

The calls were in fact sent out as part of a survey by Emerge USA, a non-profit organization seeking to empower Muslim-Americans.

See more related to this story:

6 PHOTOS
Life as a Muslim family in America
See Gallery
Life as a Muslim family in America
STERLING, VA - JUNE 1:Tasneem Moiz, 8-months, plays in the beard of her maternal grandfather, Khalid Iqbal, at the home of Iqbal's daughter, Sadaf Iqbal, on June 1, 2011, in Sterling, VA. Ibrahim Moiz, a Muslim American of Indian descent, and Sadaf Iqbal, a Pakistani-American, are raising three daughters ranging in age from 4-years-old to 8-months-old. Moiz also acts as a mentor to a couple of teenagers, trying to bridge the gap between the ways of the teen's foreign-born parents and U.S. customs.(Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
STERLING, VA - MAY 31: Ibrahim Moiz, 2nd from L, reads to his middle daughter, Maryam, 2, as his other daughters, Tasneem, 8mo, and Asiyah, 4, entertain themselves at Moiz's home on May 31, 2011, in Sterling, VA. Moiz, a Muslim American of Indian descent, and his wife Sadaf Iqbal, a Pakistani-American, are raising three daughters ranging in age from 4-years-old to 8-months-old. Moiz also acts as a mentor to a couple of teenagers, trying to bridge the gap between the ways of the teen's foreign-born parents and U.S. customs. (Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
STERLING, VA - MAY 31: Ibrahim Moiz, C, leads his two older daughters, Maryam, 2, L, and Asiyah, 4, to their bedroom near bedtime at their home on May 31, 2011, in Sterling, VA. Moiz, a Muslim American of Indian descent, and Iqbal, a Pakistani-American, are raising three daughters ranging in age from 4-years-old to 8-months-old. Moiz also acts as a mentor to a couple of teenagers, trying to bridge the gap between the ways of the teen's foreign-born parents and U.S. customs. (Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
STERLING, VA - JUNE 1: Sadaf Iqbal, R, receives her daughter, Maryam, 2, with open arms at the family's home on June 1, 2011, in Sterling, VA. Behind them is a wallhanging that bears a famous quote from the Qur'an called the 'Verse of the Throne' done by a Chinese Muslim master calligrapher named Haji Noor Deen. Iqbal, a Pakistani-American, and her husband, Ibraham Moiz, a Muslim American of Indian descent, are raising three daughters ranging in age from 4-years-old to 8-months-old. Moiz also acts as a mentor to a couple of teenagers, trying to bridge the gap between the ways of the teen's foreign-born parents and U.S. customs. (Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
STERLING, VA - MAY 31: Ibrahim Moiz, R, gives his daughter, Asiyah, 4, a high-five for using proper manners at the snack table as Moiz's wife, Sadaf Iqbal, L, works on the computer at their home on May 31, 2011, in Sterling, VA. Moiz, a Muslim American of Indian descent, and Iqbal, a Pakistani-American, are raising three daughters ranging in age from 4-years-old to 8-months-old. Moiz also acts as a mentor to a couple of teenagers, trying to bridge the gap between the ways of the teen's foreign-born parents and U.S. customs. (Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

The group created an algorithm to call Muslims for a poll on their views and experiences after the Nov. 8 national election, Sarah Cochran, director of its Virginia chapter, said on Wednesday.

Cochran said she had to reassure some call recipients that Emerge USA was conducting the poll, and an anti-Islam group was not using the organization's name as a disguise.

"All of our work is affected, where we can't get people to participate because they're afraid," said Cochran.

Since Trump's stunning election win, Muslims living in the United States have been on edge. One of his supporters has cited camps where Japanese-Americans were interned during World War Two as a precedent for a registry. Trump's choice for national security adviser, Michael Flynn, in a recent video described Islamism as a "vicious cancer inside the body of 1.7 billion people on this planet and it has to be excised."

See more related to this story:

12 PHOTOS
Wall of sticky notes in New York subway defies Trump
See Gallery
Wall of sticky notes in New York subway defies Trump
Messages written on post-it notes decorate a wall that was started in reaction to the election of President-elect Donald Trump in New York, U.S., November 15, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
A woman stops to read and photograph messages written on post-it notes regarding the election of President-elect Donald Trump in New York, U.S., November 15, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
A young girl adds a message written on a post-it note to a display that was started in reaction to the election of President-elect Donald Trump in New York, U.S., November 15, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
A woman adds a message written on a post-it note to a display that was started in reaction to the election of President-elect Donald Trump in New York, U.S., November 15, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Messages written on post-it notes decorate a wall that was started in reaction to the election of President-elect Donald Trump in New York, U.S., November 15, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
A woman stops to photograph messages written on post-it notes regarding the election of President-elect Donald Trump in New York, U.S., November 15, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Post-election Post-it notes are seen pasted along a tiled walk at Union Square subway station in New York U.S., November 14, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 10: Post-it notes, many with politically themed messages, hang on a wall at the 6th Avenue subway station as part of a public art project entitled 'Subway Therapy,' November 10, 2016 in New York City. Artist Matthew Chavez, who goes by 'Levee,' created the 'Subway Therapy' wall to offer New Yorkers a chance to write down their feelings in the wake of the presidential election. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Subway riders leave post-it notes on the walls of a subway tunnel on November 10, 2016 in New York City. New York commuters are venting anger and frustration over Republican Donald Trump's shock victory by indulging in collective therapy -- writing messages on post-it notes and sticking them on a subway wall. / AFP / Catherine Triomphe (Photo credit should read CATHERINE TRIOMPHE/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 10: People write and hang post-it notes, many with politically themed messages, on a wall at the 6th Avenue subway station as part of a public art project entitled 'Subway Therapy,' November 10, 2016 in New York City. Artist Matthew Chavez, who goes by 'Levee,' created the 'Subway Therapy' wall to offer New Yorkers a chance to write down their feelings in the wake of the presidential election. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 10: A man writes a message on a post-it note as part of a public art project entitled 'Subway Therapy' at the 6th Avenue subway station, November 10, 2016 in New York City. Artist Matthew Chavez, who goes by 'Levee,' created the 'Subway Therapy' wall to offer New Yorkers a chance to write down their feelings in the wake of the presidential election. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

On Tuesday, the Council of American-Islamic Relations posted on Twitter and Facebook asking about reports American Muslims were receiving robocalls on how they "identify." Meanwhile, others posted to their own social media accounts with questions about the calls.

One call recipient posted on Facebook "Not sure if this is a scam or this is real but I have surely reported and urge you to report as well if you get the same phone call. Welcome to the new world!"

(Reporting by Lisa Lambert; Editing by Andrew Hay)

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.

From Our Partners

Nature Gets Revenge On Safari Hunter Who Killed Elephants And Lions For Sport Nature Gets Revenge On Safari Hunter Who Killed Elephants And Lions For Sport
20 Folks Recall Shocking Interview Moments That Made Them NOT Want the Job 20 Folks Recall Shocking Interview Moments That Made Them NOT Want the Job
Man Suspects His Wife Is Cheating On Him - Then His Daughter Reveals What's Really Going Man Suspects His Wife Is Cheating On Him - Then His Daughter Reveals What's Really Going