As a New Yorker who lived blocks away from the Twin Towers right after 9/11 I asked myself this question. Where is the Muslim Al Sharpton? When I moved to Manhattan after college I saw Al Sharpton all over TV protesting for African Americans and their rights. He was every where it seemed. On and off over the years I could count on seeing him on TV when there was any civil injustice; probably not unlike Jessie Jackson Sr. But I have always wondered, and still wonder, where is the Muslim version of this? Why dont we see any Muslim outrage over terror attacks? Where is someone like Rev. Al Sharpton calling on people to see the world how he sees it. It is very disheartening that there is no one in the Muslim world that can speak out on a Global platform condemning deadly attacks. I would like to see a Muslim leader come into the spot light and clarify for Americans and the rest of the world what their religion is all about and to disavow any killing or violence.
This shouldnt be a difficult thing to happen; with the billions of Muslims in the world and only a very small percentage being extremists there should be plenty of people to speak out, own the cause. Why arent the majority of Muslims coming out in full force to defend their beliefs and to condemn ‘terrorism’ or mass killings. After all, more Muslims are killed by Muslims than anyone else. I think right now America is confused. We have a dismal economy, very high unemployment and a lot of angry people. Many of these angry people are even angrier because our President is African American. That prejudice is completely unacceptable; but its happening. You have an entire political party whose sole purpose is to defeat the President, and not to forward the needs of the American people. This is deplorable. Now think about these same people and their views on Muslims and Mosques. Getting all their info from talk radio or Fox all they see is Muslims = terrorist. This needs to change.
I’d like to see a strong voice come forward on a National and Global stage that condemns violence and explains the views of Muslims. To me it seems they are all too afraid to do that. In not doing this it just perpetuates the “all Muslims are bad” scenario lots of people around the world think. Its a shame, such a shame. If 95% of Muslims are non violent why arent you out there, like Al Sharpton, making your case. Why arent you saying this is not the Muslim way. Clarity is needed .
Like I said, I personally wondered about this after 9/11 when I lived in Manhattan and couldnt go back to my apartment for 2 weeks after the attacks. No one spoke up. It was to President Bush’s credit that he immediately made clear we werent at war with the Muslim religion, just the extremists. I think its time Muslim leaders spoke out and told the world what they think. And, of course, you have to ask yourself, why arent they? Are they afraid of their peers?
The time has come for people to speak out; Muslim leaders and Imams should understand their silence only makes people more weary. Speak out, talk about how violence is wrong. Call out people who are doing harm to and making your religion into an army. I know you are out there, speak to us. Reassure us of what your actual goals and visions are. Al Sharpton was always there standing behind his community. Its time for Muslim leaders to come forward, condemn violence and tell us your vision for moving forward in todays world.
The questions remains for me, why does no one do this. It would accomplish so much.