Monday, January 14, 2008


I was reading through Huda's earlier post on Afican American Muslims - it's been a really interesting process, learning about the struggles their community goes through in comparison to a Muslim community that is largely made up of Muslims from immigrant backgrounds.

While our community has many problems of its own, they are strikingly different from the African American Muslim experience. What I find troublesome however is that these differences (between many different cultures - South Asian, East Asian, Arab, African, African American, those of converts - the list goes on) is sometimes used to divide the Muslim community.

A sense of inferiority felt by some Muslims, when dealing with Muslims of Arab origin, has made for a rich breeding ground for stereotypes and misunderstanding. While racism clearly exists in our Muslim communities in America, as well as all over the world (a great example being the condition of many South Asian workers in Middle Eastern countries), it is something that should be addressed and dealt with proactively, rather than allowing for alienation or the propagation of racist stereotypes (by any side).

I thought this article by Samana Siddiqui sums up some of the misgivings I have on the issue. Racism is wrong, period. But it should not be used as a justification to perpetuate more racism, and create further divisions within our Ummah. That's just the classic "divide and conquer" strategy.

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