(faith based list)
- Remove politics from the practice of our faith, and give the religion back to Allah. Everything we do in the name of our religion should be for the sake of Allah and not for the sake of our public image, for the sake of popularity, or for the sake of defraying criticism.
- Have an open and honest discussion about the racial divide in Muslim America. We have to be true to our faith and candidly address the issue of racial division in Muslim America. This will be a sober conversation. However, we can get through it and we will be much better off at the other end. It will free us from denial.
- Separate politics from the religion. We cannot serve two masters. In the midst of decrying that ISIS has hijacked our religion, our politics seems to have hijacked our morality.
- Give American Muslim Imams the autonomy to shepherd their communities according to what their own knowledge and experience tell them and not based upon some national consensus. The ones in America who need to be representing Muslims are the imams, not our political leaders. We need to let our imams assume their rightful roles as stewards of our faith, and not silence them or control what they can and cannot say.
- Stop emphasizing ‘American’ in everything we do and say. It doesn’t have to be; American Muslims do this, or American Muslims did that, or look at us; we are American Muslims! We need to stop that. At this point it’s overkill, and It getting old.
- To national Islamic, political, advocacy, and policy organizations; Stop presenting a single narrative of Muslim America that excludes indigenous African American, White, and Latino Muslims. No one has to right to represent all American Muslims. We are too diverse of a group with a diverse history, sentiments, understanding of moral priority and different sense of politics.
- Stop sloganizing our religion and cease from using these stupid slogans and talking points; “somebody hijacked our religion”, “Islam is peace”, “ISIS has nothing to do with Islam”, “Islam is as American as apple pie”, “Islam is just like Chistianity”.
- Give up the idea of crafting a singular identity for American Muslims. Each Muslim American, if they don’t already have one, needs to simply get their own identity. It’s not that difficult you know. Making or crafting an identity summons images of Frankenstein, the Borg, or impersonating God, and I’m pretty sure its haram anyway.
- Stop denying that there are two Muslim Americas, one for immigrants and one for indigenous Muslims. The sooner we can accept our reality and deal with what needs to be dealt with, then the sooner we can move on as a people of faith.
- Stop thinking that you have to respond to every insult, and every criticism of Islam and Muslims.
- Find out the true identity of the person or persons who are in charge of the anti-Islamophobia campaign.
Top Priorities for American Muslims (Politically based list)
- Defeat islamophobia and crush the islamophobes once and for all.
- Do more networking with non-Muslim organizations so that we can defeat islamophobia.
- Do more charity work and get good press and pictures so that we can defeat islamophobia.
- Register one million voters so that we can create a Muslim voting block to target islamophobic politicians and defeat islamophobia.
- Make sure that America knows that Muslims are afraid of islamophobia so that people can take pity on us and we can defeat islamophobia.
- Hold more conferences with themes centered around islamophobia so that we can defeat islamophobia.
- Get more people to say good things about Muslims and perhaps target some celebrities and prominent Americans for this so that we can defeat islamophobia.
- Shut down any dissent from within the American Muslim community about the insanity in how we fight islamophobia so that we can defeat islamophobia.
- Keep talking about islamophobia so that Muslims will stay focused on islamophobia so that we can defeat islamophobia.
- Do more interfaith work, pray in more churches, consider celebrating Easter, and get better at denouncing terrorism, so that we can defeat islamophobia.
American born Luqman Ahmad, is a life long Sunni Muslim, the son of converts to Islam. He is a writer, consultant, and has been the Imam of a Northern California mosque for twenty years. He is a former executive committee member of the North America Imams Federation, a founding member of COSVIO, (the Council of Sacramento Valley Islamic Organizations), and the author of the book “The Devils Deception of the Modern day Salafiyyah Sect”, a detailed look at salafiyyism the ideology which forms the mindset of ISIS. He has written blog posts challenging ISIS, Anwar Awlaki, and BOKO Haram on his blog, imamluqman.wordpress.com. The sentiments shared in this article are his own and not representative of any of his professional affiliations. He can be reached at, email@example.com