Arab-American and Muslim students may be experiencing anxiety and confusion over the attacks, fearful of the danger of personal harassment, and suffering from a sense of shame or stigma from being identified with the suspected perpetrators of the attacks. During the Gulf War, many Arab-American students felt intimidated and silenced. Some felt that they had to keep their ethnicity a secret and let anti-Arab remarks go unchallenged. Some wanted to change their names.
Non-Arab students may be feeling a sense of vulnerability, righteous indignation, anger or hostility which is seeking any available target.