Muslim-American To Speak At Stevens

I got this email just about half an hour ago stating that as part of Women’s Programs and Graduate activies, Zainab Al-Suwaij will be hosting “Women’s Equality in the Muslim Word” on Tuesday, March 23, 2010 at 9:00 PM in the De Baun Auditorium.

The e-mail states:

At the age of 20, Zainab was one of the few women to join the 1991 intifada uprising against Saddam Hussein. After it’s failing, she went into hiding and eventually fled to the US where she became and citizen and a respected professor at Yale.

Co-founder of the American-Islamic Congress, Zainab provides an eye-opening account of her experiences as a Muslim-American & serves as a bridge across cultures, religious divides, & political differences.

I don’t think I have ever heard of the American Islamic Congress where she holds the position of Executive Director but this is their mission statement:

The American Islamic Congress (AIC) is a civil rights organization promoting tolerance and the exchange of ideas among Muslims and between other peoples. AIC challenges increasingly negative perceptions of Muslims by advocating responsible leadership and ‘two-way’ interfaith understanding. As Muslim-Americans, thriving amidst America’s open multicultural society and civil liberties, we promote these same values for the global Muslim community.

So I think any civic organization that is working towards achieving moderation and promoting tolerance between people of different faiths is certainly something worth listening to.

I will be attending the event later this month and will hopefully be able to provide a follow up to the event. If you go to Stevens or are even in the area, I urge you to attend and take a look for yourself and make your own judgment and even take part in the discussion on culture, religion and gender.

For more information on Zainab Al-Suwaij, please visit American Islamic Congress.

Poll Finds U.S. Muslims Thriving, but Not Content


An excellent find by Chill yo Islam Yo from the New York Times on the state of contentment of American-Muslims as opposed to Muslims all around the world. THe general consensus seems to be that they doing pretty well but they are not very content. 


A Gallup poll of Muslims in the United States has found that they are far more likely than people in Muslim countries to see themselves as thriving.

In fact, the only countries where Muslims are more likely to see themselves as thriving are Saudi Arabia and Germany, according to the poll.

And yet, within the United States, Muslims are the least content religious group, when compared with Jews, Mormons, Protestants and Roman Catholics.

Gallup researchers say that is because the largest segment of American Muslims are African-Americans (35 percent, including first-generation immigrants), and they generally report lower levels of income, education, employment and well-being than other Americans.

But American Muslims are not one homogeneous group, the study makes clear. Asian-American Muslims (from countries like India and Pakistan) have more income and education and are more likely to be thriving than other American Muslims. In fact, their quality of life indicators are higher than for most other Americans, except for American Jews.

“We discovered how diverse Muslim Americans are,” said Dalia Mogahed, executive director and senior analyst of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies, which financed the poll. “Ethnically, politically and economically, they are in every way a cross-section of the nation. They are the only religious community without a majority race.”

The Gallup study is significant because it is the first to examine a randomly selected sample of American Muslims. Gallup interviewed more than 300,000 people by telephone in 2008 while conducting broader polls, and focused on 946 who identified themselves as Muslims. (The margin of sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.)

Previous studies of American Muslims located respondents based on surnames, mosque attendance or geographic clusters, which polling experts say can skew the results.

Gallup asked an extensive battery of questions, producing a picture of American Muslims through the prisms of race, gender, class, age and education. The international comparisons were possible because of earlier Gallup studies of Muslims overseas.

American Muslim women, contrary to stereotype, are more likely than American Muslim men to have college and post-graduate degrees. They are more highly educated than women in every other religious group except Jews. American Muslim women also report incomes more nearly equal to men, compared with women and men of other faiths.

Muslim women in the United States attend mosque as frequently as Muslim men — a contrast with many Muslim countries where the mosques are primarily for men. American Muslims are generally very religious, saying that religion is an important part of their daily lives (80 percent), more than any other group except Mormons (85 percent). The figure for Americans in general is 65 percent.

By political ideology, Muslims were spread across the spectrum from liberal to conservative, with about 4 in 10 saying they were moderates. By party identification, Muslims resembled Jews more than any other religious group, with small minorities registered as Republicans, roughly half Democrats and about a third independents.

There are clear signs of social alienation, however. Lower percentages of Muslims register to vote or volunteer their time than adherents of other faiths. They are less likely to be satisfied with the area where they live. These indicators are “worrying,” said Ahmed Younis, a senior analyst at the Muslim studies center.

“There is still a sense among American Muslims of being excluded from the mainstream,” Mr. Younis said, “and among young people that’s more acute.”

But the perception is far worse among Muslims in England and France, the study found.

Mr. Younis said the finding “reinforces the proposition that the integration process for American Muslims is, on the whole, a much more successful endeavor than it is for European Muslims.”

Chill Yo Islam Yo, May 2009


You should read the whole article.

Proud To Be An American Looks Like This…

This is what it means to be a Proud American in the 21st Century… from Berlin, Germany no less.

I haven’t read any early estimates on the number of people that showed up but it certainly looks like one of the better speeches any Presidential nominee or Senator has ever given abroad. (How many have actually given one abroad? I don’t have an answer for that.)

“He is one of those politicians who reaches parts other politicians don’t reach,” Oakley said. “After the unpopularity of George W. Bush, the world is waiting to love America again, and many see in Obama, with his youth and his optimism, somebody who can bring that about.” – Robin Oakley, CNN’s European political editor on Obama enjoying his popularity overseas.

The CNN quote in this post can be referred back to here: Obama uses Berlin symbolism to reunite ‘old allies’