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Opinion Editorials, September 2009


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Muslim American News & Views

September 14, 2009

Verse: That You May Know Each Other

CAIR Director to Discuss Status of American Muslims on Al Jazeera

CAIR Rep Discusses American Attitudes Toward Islam (NPR - Audio)

9/11 Stigma Stays with Southwest Florida Muslims

CAIR Co-Sponsors Interfaith 9/11 Vigil Outside White House

CAIR-NY Applauds Sentencing in Election Night Bias Attacks

CAIR-OH: Muslim Convert Shuns Food, Drink, Feels Near to God

CA: Ad Campaign in Bay Area Answers Questions About Islam

CA: Young Athletes Embrace Ramadan Fast (Sacramento Bee)



“O humankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes that you may know each other (not that you may despise each other). Verily, the most honored of you in the sight of god is the most righteous of you.”

The Holy Quran, 49:13



CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad will discuss the status of American Muslims today live on Al Jazeera Arabic at 2:30 p.m. EST and on Al Jazeera English at 9 p.m. EST. He will also appear on BBC radio tomorrow at noon EST to discuss the same issue.



Click here to listen to the interview.

Eight years after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Americans think Muslims face more discrimination than any other religious group. That's according to a new survey conducted by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. Pew Forum Senior Researcher Greg Smith and Ibrahim Hooper, National Communications Director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, discuss the new findings.


9/11 STIGMA STAYS WITH SOUTHWEST FLORIDA MUSLIMS - TOP Prejudice, hatred still encountered Chris Umpierre, News-Press, 9/11/09

Extended questioning at airports. Angry stares in the grocery store. Local conferences blasting their religion and calling it a threat to America's safety.

Life hasn't been easy for Southwest Florida Muslims since the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. (More)


MUSLIMS TO HOLD INTERFAITH 9/11 VIGIL OUTSIDE WHITE HOUSE - TOP 'Light the Night for Peace and Friendship' in memory of victims

On September 11, 2009, the American Muslim Voice Foundation, along with interfaith groups and community organizations, will host a "Light the Night for Peace and Friendship" candle-light vigil and Ramadan fast-breaking meal (iftar) outside the White House in memory of the victims of the 9/11 terror attacks.

What: Interfaith Candle-Light Vigil and Iftar Why: To spread the Miracle Movement of Peace and Friendship When: Friday, September 11, 2009 Where: Lafayette Park, SE Quadrant, Washington, D.C. Time: Gather at 6 p.m. Short program begins at 6:30 p.m. Breaking of the fast at sunset, then prayer followed by the candle-light vigil. Contact: Samina Sundas, 650-387-1994

A press conference announcing the vigil and iftar will be held 11 a.m. September 10 at the New York Avenue Presbyterian Church in Washington, D.C.

Speakers: Rev. Dr. David Ensign, pastor, Clarendon Presbyterian Church, Arlington, Va., and Christian Peace Witness, Medea Benjamin, Nihad Awad, National Executive Director of Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Co-Founder of Code Pink, Rabbi David Shneyer. Bill Galvin, National Committee of the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship. (His children lost their uncle on Sept. 11-He worked in the World Trade Center.) Samina Sundas, Founding Executive Director of the American Muslim Voice

When: On Thursday, September 10, 2009 Where: New York Avenue Presbyterian Church, Washington DC Time: 11 a.m.

We will honor the 9/11 victims and their families by sowing the seeds of peace and friendship. Together we can build a safe secure, peaceful and harmonious world.

Please join hands with us as we walk on the path Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. paved for us. Become full partners in "The Miracle Movement of Peace and friendship." We will foster friendships among all Americans and the world by bridging the cultural and religious gap.

To become a part of this movement please click "Light the Night for Peace and friendship" at

In a statement issued today, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said: “As we mark the eighth anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, CAIR and the American Muslim community mourn the deaths of our fellow citizens and pledge to continue doing whatever we can to ensure that our nation never again feels the pain and loss suffered on that tragic day.”


American Muslim Voice


Multifaith Voices for Peace and Justice Presbyterian Peace Fellowship The Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns

Our Peace Partners:

September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows Amnesty International, Western region Asian Americans for Peace & Justice Asian Law Alliance Buddhist Peace Fellowship, West Bay Chapter Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) Code Pink Council of Churches of Santa Clara County Dalai Lama Foundation Ecumenical Peace Institute Fellowship of Reconciliation Global Exchange Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) Los Altos Voices for Peace Micahs Call Multifaith Voices for Peace & Justice Muslim Peace Fellowship Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) National Japanese American Historical Society National Peace Academy The Nihonmachi Outreach Committee, San Jose Olive Branch Interfaith Peace Partnership Pax Christy of Stanford, CA Peninsula Peace & Justice Center, Palo Alto, CA Presbyterian Peace Fellowship Priority Africa Network Raging Grannies Action League Rahima Foundation Reach and Teach Shalom Center SIREN South Bay Department of Peace The Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns The South Alameda County Peace & Justice Coalition United Muslims of America (UMA) National V. President Sharon KufeIdt, Veterans for Peace



(NEW YORK, NY, 9/11/09) - The New York chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NY) is applauding the sentencing of four Staten Islanders convicted of a series of hate crimes on election night 2008 to prison terms, ranging from four to nine years.

The victims of the attacks included Liberian teen Alie Kamara who was beaten with a metal pipe and police baton and a white male Ronald Forte who was driven over by a car because he was thought to be black.

SEE: 4 Men Sentenced in Election Night Racial Attacks (NY Newsday)

“The sentencing sends an unequivocal message that interfering with the voting rights of minorities is unacceptable as a matter of law and in direct contradiction to the universal principles of a free and tolerant society,” said CAIR-NY Civil Rights Director Aliya Latif, who has been in contact with Kamara’s family.

“These criminal acts, based purely on racial animus, are an attack on our democracy and warrant the severest penalties to serve as a legal deterrent.”

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

CONTACT: CAIR-NY Civil Rights Director Aliya Latif, 212-870-2002, 732-429-4268, E-Mail:; CAIR-NY Community Affairs Director Faiza N. Ali, 212-870-2002, E-Mail:


FIRST FAST A REVELATION OF FAITH - TOP As Muslim convert shuns food, drink, she feels God near Meredith Heagney, Columbus Dispatch, 9/11/09

Mary Essanbati, a seventh-grade teacher at Eastmoor Middle School, said the monthlong Ramadan fast has been easier than she anticipated, though she is occasionally thirsty in class.

As a Muslim convert, Mary Essanbati was nervous about her first Ramadan.

Fasting from food, drink and even water from before sunrise to sunset for 30 days didn't sound easy to her.

But, surprisingly, it has been…

The process is supposed to increase the discipline of the faster, who is spiritually purified by the process, said Abukar Arman, president of the Columbus chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. (More)



It's certainly not unusual to spot billboards in Silicon Valley urging you to step into Fry's Electronics, shop at the Great Mall or buy a new Halloween costume.

But for the first time, billboards asking "Why Islam?" have sprouted up in San Jose, Santa Clara and Concord, along with a blitz of posters on buses and bus stops — a campaign to educate people about the religion and fight negative stereotypes. The ads offer free Korans and a toll-free number people can call to seek answers about the oft-misunderstood religion. (More)


YOUNG ATHLETES EMBRACE RAMADAN FAST - TOP Stephen Magagnini, Sacramento Bee, 9/11/09

After playing golf with her dad one recent triple-digit afternoon, Noor Ahmed needed a drink.

The 10-year-old prodigy who sinks 30-foot putts hadn't had a drop since 6 a.m. She finally got a cool drink of water 13 hours later after the tangerine sun went down over Folsom.

"It tastes like you haven't taken a shower in a long time," said a famished Noor, who's among the young Muslim American student athletes sweating out the holy month of Ramadan.





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