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Sunday, May 31, 2009

Engaging American Muslims Will Give a Far Better Message to the Muslim World than Speeches

Although these are excellent first steps, it is critical that the President engage Muslims at home first. He must remember that he represents us, too.

President Obama could begin by making his address to Muslims worldwide from a mosque on American soil. Why not Masjid Al-Fatir, the mosque in the President's Hyde Park neighborhood in Chicago? Muhammad Ali, the former world heavyweight boxing champion, built this house of worship. Ali is an American Muslim respected throughout the Muslim world. President Obama visited churches and synagogues in the U.S. during his election campaign, but not a mosque. This was most likely because of Islamophobia, which created a climate where he felt it necessary to keep a distance from American Muslims.

American Muslims are grateful for the steps President Obama has taken to lessen hostilities abroad. He banned torture, ordered the closing of Guantanamo Bay and the CIA's secret interrogation centers.


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