The notion that before people became Muslim, their lives meant nothing, their relationships with family meant nothing, their memories and life experiences meant nothing and they were nothing more than American heathens, is a false notion. Even still, many fataawa (Islamic rulings by scholars) were built on this notion, and many of us believed as such. That’s why some of us doubt our own worth as Muslims or our ability to govern ourselves or knowledge of own culture and our own country, or countrymen and women. We make things haram with no evidence, simply because so and so shaykh said so. We’ll deny what is front of our own eyes because of what someone says ten thousand miles away with no means to question them, or hold them accountable when they are wrong. We’ll reject our leaders who are right in the hood with us (flawed as they may be) and accept religious leadership from people who have never set foot on these shores (just as flawed).
Black American Muslims and converts have sacrificed a whole generation of Muslim family’s, men women and children because of errant rulings based in part on biases against the West or biases against America. The results have been disastrous and not even a “oops, I’m sorry” note. Over the years, we’ve allowed people too prohibit virtually every occasion, relationship connection and point of contact with our families in one way or another through errant and predatory fataawa. That is a fact.
Much of the dysfunction, lack of governance, and fitnah within the Black American Muslim and convert community is a result of decades of foreign spheres of religious influence, imported sectarianism, racism, and civilizational neglect, padded on to our own self-hate and post-slave mentality. At this juncture, many of us (Black American Muslims and converts to Islam) have lost the will to build, to thrive as a Muslim people, the connections between generations have been severed. We are a severly splintered and dysfunctional community. At this point many of us seem satisfied to simply argue ourselves into oblivion.
Some people still believe that the American Muslim convert community constitute a third of the American Muslim community. That was a long time ago. Now it’s bout 13%. By 2030, it’ll be about 5%. That’s not that far away. The face of Muslim America has changed, perhaps forever. The Black American Muslim and convert community might want to prepare itself for near extinction. Don’t want to argue. Do your own research.
When people talk about the future of Islam in America, Black American Muslims are hardly mentioned anymore. There is no one really to blame for that except ourselves. Many Black American Muslims have made a conscious choice, not to establish Islam, not even in our homes, not even with our own children. Not to establish communities, not to have leadership, not to spend money in upholding the religion. or not passing down the religion to the next generation. Many of us have decided that we will do nothing in the upholding of our faith. These are conscious choices. Apathy, is a conscious choice.
Imam Abu Laith Luqman Ahmad, email@example.com