September 11, 2019

This Is Life for Muslim-Americans 18 Years After 9/11
Tom Pennington/GettyWhen you speak with the author of a new children’s book, you typically don’t expect to hear words like “neo-fascist movement” or how the current U.S. president has “unearthed bigotry.” But that was the discussion I had with Ibtihaj Muhammad, who made history in 2016 when she became the first American Olympic athlete both to wear a hijab and win a medal while doing it. (She won a bronze medal as part of the women’s sabre team.) Her new book, The Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family depicts an African-American Muslim girl wearing a hijab and confronting the challenges and celebrating the joys that brings.Muhammad recalled that as a kid growing up in New Jersey before 9/11, she was taunted for wearing a hijab, with one kid calling her head covering a “tablecloth,” and said she hopes her book can help kids “feel strong in the face of being made to feel different.”She added something that I know resonates with countless Muslim Americans today, “I believe it’s a lot harder in this moment to be Muslim…than it was right after 9/11.”  I heard that sentiment countless times over Labor Day weekend at the Islamic Society of North America’s annual convention in Houston.It truly is a tale of two experiences for Muslims today. On one hand, Muslims in America are seeing our greatest successes ever in ways that can be objectively measured. There are now three Muslims in Congress, the most ever. Keith Ellison last year became the first Muslim American to win statewide office when he was elected attorney general for Minnesota. And more Muslim Americans than ever before now serve as elected officials from school boards to state legislatures, with historic wins in 2018 from New Hampshire to New Mexico to California.In the world of entertainment there has also been never before seen success. In 2018, Mahershala Ali became the first Muslim American to win an Academy Award for acting, which he repeated in 2019 with an Oscar for his performance in The Green Book. For years, the Muslim American community longed for a TV series focused on a Muslim family. That finally happened in 2019 with the critically acclaimed Hulu Series Ramy, starring Ramy Youssef, about growing up Muslim in New Jersey. There’s also comedian Hassan Minhaj becoming the first Muslim American host of late-night show with his Netflix series, Patriot Act.Yet at the very same time there’s a growing a sense of unease and even fear that something horrible is waiting around the corner for us. And I mean that last part quite literally, given the spike in hate crimes directed against the Muslim community since Trump first called for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims” entering the United States back in December 2015 through 2018. We have seen our mosques firebombed and self-professed Trump supporters plotting terror attacks to kill American Muslims in places from New York to Kansas. (I was even the subject of death threats and an organized smear campaign by Trump-supporting Neo-Nazis, causing me to sue them in federal court.)And while it didn’t occur in the United States, the white supremacist terror attack on a New Zealand mosque that killed over 50 Muslims sent shockwaves through the U.S. Muslim community, as did the man espousing white supremacist views who killed 11 Jewish Americans while they were in the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. As one mental health professional explained to NPR recently about the rise in anti-Muslim hate crimes and rhetoric, “What is going to be the long-term impact of this persistent exposure to trauma that our kids are facing right now?” No one knows for sure, but there has been a documented spike in bullying of Muslim students in recent years. Consider for a moment what it would feel like to be part of a faith community that the man in the White House declares he wants to ban from our nation and that other GOP elected officials have demonized over the years amidst plots to murder people in your community. Add to that Trump’s recent attacks on the two female Muslim members of Congress, Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar, urging them to go back to their own country. How would that impact your sense of being an other? Your sense of being unwanted in your own country? Despite the dreams of Trump and people like him, we as a community aren’t going anywhere. Muslims were here before the United States and literally help build this country, given that 10 to 15 percent of African slaves were Muslims. And we are a growing community; as Pew notes, by 2040 Muslims are expected to be the second largest faith group in the country, behind Christians and moving ahead of Jews.The future for our community in the near term, however, will likely be more of what we’ve seen recently. The hope, though, is that in the long run the best of times will eclipse the worst. 
Related Stories
Latest News
Top news around the world
Coronavirus Disease

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.

Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.

Around the World

Celebrity News

> Latest News in Media

Watch It
See inside the $11M NYC apartment where Jennifer Aniston grew up | Page Six Celebrity News
January 22, 2021
Rolu0nEerZE
Mira Furlan, ‘Lost’ and ‘Babylon 5’ actress, dead at 65 | Page Six Celebrity News
January 22, 2021
oWn6ovHp8Kc
‘Too Hot to Handle’ star Francesca Farago and new girlfriend pack on PDA | Page Six Celebrity News
January 21, 2021
GhpFhAiVuD0
Jamie Dornan & Eddie Redmayne Remember Nightmare Auditions When They Were Roommates Actors on Actors
January 24, 2021
R7yV_QSFM5I
Andra Day & Leslie Odom Jr. On Playing Musical Icons Billie Holiday and Sam Cooke | Actors on Actors
January 23, 2021
WFD7JFy5G-s
‘WandaVision’ Star Teyonah Parris on Embodying Marvel Superhero Monica Rambeau
January 21, 2021
8Ul8IaG7ypQ
Frontier Airlines Passenger Complains About Sick Passenger and Told He Should Drive | TMZ
January 24, 2021
VC2XrqJX6_8
Mattel Honors Poet Maya Angelou With Barbie Doll | TMZ TV
January 21, 2021
nEnK5Q3VqeY
Chrissy Teigen and John Legend Go Horseback Riding With Kids | TMZ TV
January 21, 2021
5CpLrILyT1U
Selena Gomez: A Voice for Change
January 24, 2021
QnqEnITH9OM
Madison LeCroy Pulls Out Jay Cutler "Receipts" After Kristin Reunion
January 24, 2021
didPkNObNKA
Kate Middleton & Prince William Get a New Puppy
January 24, 2021
NGlorQqPvuo
TV Schedule
Late Night Show
Watch the latest shows of U.S. top comedians

Sports

Latest sport results, news, videos, interviews and comments
Latest Events
24
Jan
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Schalke - Bayern Munich
24
Jan
SPAIN: La Liga
Atletico Madrid - Valencia
24
Jan
SPAIN: La Liga
Elche - Barcelona
24
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
Verona - Napoli
24
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
Juventus - Bologna
24
Jan
ENGLAND: Championship
Middlesbrough - Blackburn
24
Jan
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Hoffenheim - Koln
24
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
Parma - Sampdoria
24
Jan
SPAIN: La Liga
Celta Vigo - Eibar
24
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
Lazio - Sassuolo
24
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
Genoa - Cagliari
24
Jan
SPAIN: La Liga
Osasuna - Granada CF
23
Jan
SPAIN: La Liga
Alaves - Real Madrid
23
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
Udinese - Inter Milan
23
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
AC Milan - Atalanta
23
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
Roma - Spezia
22
Jan
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Borussia Monchengladbach - Borussia Dortmund
21
Jan
SPAIN: La Liga
Eibar - Atletico Madrid
21
Jan
ENGLAND: Premier League
Liverpool - Burnley
20
Jan
ENGLAND: Premier League
Manchester City - Aston Villa
20
Jan
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Augsburg - Bayern Munich
20
Jan
ENGLAND: Premier League
Fulham - Manchester United
19
Jan
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Bayer Leverkusen - Borussia Dortmund
19
Jan
ENGLAND: Premier League
Leicester City - Chelsea
18
Jan
ENGLAND: Premier League
Arsenal - Newcastle United
18
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
Cagliari - AC Milan
17
Jan
ITALY: Serie A
Inter Milan - Juventus
Find us on Instagram
at @feedimo to stay up to date with the latest.
Featured Video You Might Like
zWJ3MxW_HWA L1eLanNeZKg i1XRgbyUtOo -g9Qziqbif8 0vmRhiLHE2U JFCZUoa6MYE UfN5PCF5EUo 2PV55f3-UAg W3y9zuI_F64 -7qCxIccihU pQ9gcOoH9R8 g5MRDEXRk4k
Copyright © 2020 Feedimo. All Rights Reserved.