As historians of South Asian America, we know that having your citizenship stripped because of the color of your skin is not unusual in our history. The United States has a long history of racism being encoded into law, and manifesting in law, on a regular basis. The story of internment of Americans of Japanese descent is perhaps the one that is most recent in our collective memory, partly because of George Takei’s tireless work to keep those stories alive.
Entries from March 2017
With recent political decisions to attempt to ban Muslims and refugees from entering this nation for a better life or even for safety, what is our role in responding as people of faith? As a nation founded upon principles of religious freedom and enshrined in our Constitution, what are the duties of a Christian majority in defending the freedom of religious minorities? Fear is a highly controlling force that plays a major role in the narrative around Muslims – and a lack of common understanding about Islam as a religion often fuels the fire of fear.
I'll be hosting a #GlobalEdChat with Asia Society on Teaching Islam.
Thursday, Mar. 23, 2017
“Would I love to get more people to this exhibit and get them to understand that Muslims are human beings with desires and passions and artistic creativity in ways that maybe they haven’t thought about before? Absolutely,” Mr. Rashid said.
Questioning whether Islam is a religion is not, in and of itself, a new idea. Dr. Hussein Rashid, a professor of religion at Barnard College, told me that it was a dynamic that began in Europe and has a “centuries-long pedigree.” “We are seeing a particularly American manifestation of it now,” he added. He continued, “This administration is playing into all of these themes very clearly: They are trying to say that Muslims are not human and that they are not American.”