Amer­i­cans are almost evenly divided in how they view Mus­lims, according to a survey released by the Arab Amer­ican Insti­tute in Washington.

But the online survey, which also gauged views on Mor­mons, Jews, Catholics, evan­gel­i­cals, Bud­dhists and Hindus, also found a striking gen­er­a­tional gap and sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ences between polit­ical groups.

The Amer­ican Divide: How We View Arabs And Mus­lims,” found that 41 per­cent of Amer­i­cans had unfa­vor­able views of Mus­lims, com­pared to 40 per­cent who held favor­able views.

That’s an improve­ment from 2010, when another Arab Amer­ican Insti­tute survey found that 55 per­cent of Amer­i­cans viewed Mus­lims unfa­vor­ably, com­pared to 35 per­cent with favor­able views. Pro­fessor Jack Levin, co-​​director of the Center on Vio­lence and Con­flict at North­eastern Uni­ver­sity, attrib­uted the spike in anti-​​Muslim sen­ti­ment in 2010 to protests against a pro­posed Islamic center near Ground Zero. “That effect has been fading over time,” Levin said.

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