Muslim Thought has another well written post (masha Allah) on Muslim American Culture. We will have to begin to realize that we are Americans and begin to become involved in our local communities and rather than adopting the discredited method of disengagement and isolation. The brother rhetorically asks if it is wrong for an American to retain his identity and be Muslim. No, it is not wrong. We do not have to convert to another culture upon accepting Islam. This is the current misconception that I hope that we can change in the coming years.
The fact is that I can see this culture coming together even without any effort on our part. We have a Muslim US Congressman along with several Muslims serving in local elected office across the country. Muslim Americans regularly win accolades for their service in their communities.
One thing that should be noted – and I feel is intentionally kept quiet by Islamophobes – is that MANY Blackamerican families have at least one Muslim family member if not an entire branch of the family tree. This has been key to the ‘indigenization’ of Muslim Americans in our society. Being a Muslim is an accepted part of the Blackamerican experience. Further, many Blackamericans of other faiths have names such as ‘Rasheed’, ‘Lateefah’, ‘Khadijah’, ’Jamal’, ‘Kareem‘ and ‘Rashad‘ which traditionally are Muslim names.
So when the bigots try to speak of Muslim Americans in alien terms – against a backdrop of screaming effigy burning extremists – it seems very strange to a large segment of the population that have uncles, aunts, cousins, grand-children, sisters and brothers that are Muslim. This is part of the reason it was complete folly to mention Congressman Ellison in conjuntion with the immigration debate. Many Muslim Americans have long and very DEEP roots in this country and this is something that we should not run away from. We should keep our family ties strong (in accordance with Islamic teachings) and work to strengthen those established roots
We are not aliens.
We have no other home. This IS our home
The only question in my mind is how we get our immigrant and second generation immigrant brothers and sisters integrated into this ‘indigenization’ process?