HOUSTON (FOX 26) - In the wake of a deadly bombing, in the midst of a presidential campaign, Texas Senator Ted Cruz proposed as a pre-emption to ISIS attack empowering "law enforcement to patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods before they become radicalized."
While the position is drawing heavy fire the candidate refuses to retract.
"It is good law enforcement to focus on where threats are emanating from and anywhere where there is a locus of radicalization," said Cruz.
"Does does he mean that we are going to have to carry cards and identify ourselves? Are there going to be police cars? Will I have to carry papers? Just as an American, I was shocked by this," said Arsalan Safiullah of Houston's Council on American Islamic Relations.
Safiullah believes Cruz's words contribute to anti-Muslim hysteria that's both dangerous and unjustified.
"The truth is Muslims will report issues like this and we are trained on that. This is something that deeply concerns us. We are aware of how other communities view us and the prejudice against us and we take a very proactive approach that if there is radicalization, if someone is like that, we would report on them immediately," said Safiullah.
Vigilance M.J. Khan believes is both genuine and on-going within Houston's quarter million strong Islamic community.
To Americans of the Muslim faith he offered encouragement in the face of the scrutiny.
"The future is bright for our children and grandchildren. We live in the greatest country in the world, so don't let this kind of talk depress you or make you fearful in any way," said Khan, President of the Islamic Society of Greater Houston.
And yet Safiullah says the words of those who seek to lead have consequences.
"My son when he was in school recently, someone told him if Trump wins the election that he would have to leave the country. He's nine years old. He's only grown up in the US. It is the only country he knows and loves."