The Burden of the Black American Muslim Man. By Shaykh Abu Laith Luqman Ahmad


It is very difficult for an outsider to understand the dynamics of Black American Muslim marriages in inner-city America unless you come from the places that we come from. The breakdown and failure of the Black American Muslim family in these inner-city plantations that we live on is usually attributed to the inadequacy or failure of the Black Muslim man. That is the go to position and we are used to that. But that characterization does not tell the true story nor the whole story.

;Out of thousands upon thousands of black American Muslim men that I know personally, it has never been the stated intention of any of them to abandon our women or our children or our people. We don’t even talk like that.

As husbands and fathers and stepfathers we’ve take on the full dose of generational trauma, a history of abuse, abandonment, addiction, the psychological issues, the emotional baggage and everything else that comes with our women and children who are products, like ourselves of the lifestyle of jaahiliyya that exists in the controlled plantations that we live in.

We know who we are, and we know who our women are, better than any outside Shaykh, scholar, imam, or layperson would ever know. We take our women on, despite their history, and despite our history, and make a go of it as husbands, as Fathers, as stepfathers, as uncle’s, as mentors, as providers, and as teachers. Why do we do it? We do it out of faith, and the belief that through Islam things can work. And because no one else is going to do it. And It’s not all about chasing ass like people say. Y’all got us twisted.

I married a sister who had four children when I was barely 22 years old. Although I loved her, and she was a good wife, and I think I was a good husband, it did not work out. However, it was not before I was able to teach my wife, and her children some of the Islam that I knew, and those children are grown today with their own Muslim children by the grace of Allah. My last wife had six children when I married her. I’ve helped raise 19 children who were not my biological children. For some of them, I am the only father that they have ever known. And this is not rare at all.

Black American Muslim men have taken on much more than we will ever be given credit for and quite frankly we aren’t looking for credit. We don’t talk about everything that we do because if you are not of our world, it’s really none of your damn business. But we do take on marriages with hurt, traumatized, broken and sometimes halfway crazy women and everything that they come with. I mean everything. And they take us on too, knowing that many times it’s going to be an uphill battle because of our circumstances, and because of our history. Why? Because we have faith in Allah, and we have faith in our women who demonstrate faith.

When we see our women struggling, or abandoned, we take on the task even though we ourselves are struggling. We take on other men’s children who themselves many times have been abused, traumatized, neglected, abandoned, and even taken away from their mother in her previous life. Sometimes we know the details, and sometimes we don’t. Sometimes we don’t ask the questions because we already know the answers to those questions.

We’ve taken on these responsibilities because we believe in Allah, we believe in Islam, and we believed for a long time that Islam will solve our problems automatically. We’ve learned by our own experiences that it is a little bit more complicated than that. it’s not like we had a civilizational handbook on how to survive as Black American Muslim men in this corrupt,rigged, racist system that we live in.

We are an entirely new and different civilization of Muslims, in a situational reality unlike an faced by a previous Muslim people. The last thing we need is somebody from the outside trying to play Monday morning quarterback, sometimes not even knowing the game, the language of the plantation, or who we are in reality. so unless you have something concrete and beneficial to offer us at this juncture, stay off our backs. And that goes for you women too, who are still under the spell.

Imam Abu Laith Luqman Ahmad

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