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14 ways you can fight Islamophobia

Abdul Malik Mujahid

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[This is a second version of an earlier article]

Islamophobia is real. You may have personally experienced it or know a family member, friend or acquaintance who has. This new racism must be made known and fought against. Here are a couple of ways to combat this phenomenon:

1. Remember the Prophet. The Prophet was subject to horrible insults and hate crimes in his lifetime. He remained steadfast, patient and tolerant in the face of this Islamophobia. We must model this same behavior.

Good and Evil deeds are not alike. Requite evil with good, and he who is your enemy will become your dearest friend. But none will attain this save those who endure with fortitude and are greatly favored by God. (Quran 41: 34-35)

Pray that God guides these people who mock the Deen and one of God’s Prophet.

2. Note that incidents of Islamophobia are not isolated. Whether it's threat of bombing Makkah, calling Islam evil, depicting the Prophet as a terrorist, disrespecting the Quran, discriminating against Muslims, profiling Hindus, Sikhs, or Latinos thinking they look like Muslims, torturing prisoners, bombing civilians, these are all signs of Islamophobia.

3. Also note that not all media or all non-Muslims support this type of insulting behavior. Many have been at the forefront of condemning torture, bombing and occupation. There are 75 million Americans who, despite all Islamophobic media, think positive about Islam and Muslims.

4. Equate racism, anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. They all are fruits of the same tree of hate.

5. Start using the word Islamophobia to describe any kind of hate crime or speech against Islam and Muslims. Doing this will make the term uniform and eventually, an accepted part of the English language the way the term "anti-Semitism" is.

6. If you are involved in interfaith work, bring up the topic of Islamophobia at your meetings. Stress the urgency and need for people of all faiths to help address and condemn it and all other forms of intolerance publicly. If possible, get the organization to issue a public statement condemning Islamophobia in general, as well as in response to specific incidents like those mentioned above.

7. Sponsor reports on Islamophobia. Unless more documentation and yearly opinion surveys are conducted, people will continue to dismiss Islamophobia as a reality. So far, the UK is the only country which has officially commissioned a report on Islamophobia. The word has yet to become a part of American media. 

8. Request your local library to purchase some of the latest books and articles on the phenomenon of Islamophobia. Some of these include Islamophobia: Making Muslims the Enemy, Islamophobia and Anti-Americanism: Causes and Remedies and Combating Islamophobia depends on unlearning intolerance

Report any and every incident of Islamophobia you, your family or friends encounter. The FBI collects hate crime statistics. Report Islamophobia to them at your local FBI office. File a report with the Council on American-Islamic Relations. They issue an annual report on Muslim civil rights in the US. Also report the crime to your local police office.

10. If it's an election year, make sure your local Congressman or Congresswoman who relies on your vote is aware of Islamophobia. Organize a delegation of Muslims in your constituency if you can and arrange to make a presentation on the topic, as well as a list of clear things you would like your Congressman or Congresswoman to do about Islamophobia if they want your vote.

11.For every incident of Islamophobia, write a letter to the editor and your local civil rights organization about it.

12. Organize a program at your local mosque or community center about the problem of Islamophobia today. Hold a brainstorming session as part of the program as well to discuss how to solve this problem.

13. Thank those who speak out or act against Islamophobia. A quick call, even leaving a message and/or a two-line email message are sufficient.

14. Make Dua that Allah guides those who hold Islamophobic views and practice Islamophobia. The Prophet made Dua for the Quraysh, asking for them to be guided because they were ignorant of what they were doing by committing Islamophobic acts and saying wrong things against Islam and the Prophet.

© 2008 Abdul Malik Mujahid

*** Islamophobia Watch
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Your Comments

Abdul Wahab Khalid, Kangar, Perlis, Malaysia - wrote on 5/12/2012 7:20:24 PM
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Comment: Alhamduillah for sharing your dawa in a very clear and practicable manner which enables our muslim sisters and brothers to implement. May the non-muslims see there beautiful aspects of Islam.

bluejin39, China - wrote on 2/13/2012 8:45:18 PM
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Comment: Thank you for your selfless share, your article is well written, very much like your article, looking forward to your next update.colleague also welcome blogger to my blog of giving directions, thank you. http://www.swtor4credits.com

Naser AW Mohammed, Frederick, MD - wrote on 10/1/2010 8:47:05 AM
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Comment: Really, the article will help us to understand and shape ourself in Islam, and preach to follow citizen.

Tazeen Hasan, Duba, tabuk - wrote on 9/28/2010 1:00:23 AM
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Comment: Latinos mayy look like Muslims because many Latinos came hear from Spain which has about 5.6 million Muslims wwho were converted to christanity by force so they may have Arab blood.

Wajahat Khan, Palmerston North, New Zealand - wrote on 9/24/2010 7:50:59 PM
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Comment: Great advice

Samana Siddiqui, Sound Vision Foundation, Chicago - wrote on 4/9/2010 9:35:10 AM
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Comment: Mauricio: I just wanted to clarify that the purpose was not at all to insult Latinos or any other group of people. What the author was trying to say was that there is harassment of people who look like Muslims, whether that is because of the way they dress, the color of their skin or the features of their faces. Some Latinos have features and complexions that many Muslims do (e.g. dark hair, dark eyes), which is why they, too, may become targets of harassment even though they are not Muslim. I'm sorry if that was not clear in the article.

mauricio, erlangen - wrote on 11/5/2009 10:07:02 AM
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Comment: Why is it that "Latinos thinking they look like islam people" is an insult or sign of islamophobia? I just don't get it... you want to be treated with respect but you feel you can treat others without respect...

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