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Executive Editor: Abdus Sattar Ghazali

Chronology of Islam in America (2019)
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali

April  2019

Resolution Recognizing American Muslims’ history and contributions submitted in Congress
April 1: Ms. Judy Chu of California (
for herself, Ms. Norton, Ms. Mc
Cllum, Mr. Swalwell of California, Mrs. Watson Coleman, Mrs. Lawrence, Mr. Khanna, Mr. Correa, Mr. Beyer, Mr. Ryan, Mr. Krishnamoorthi, Ms. Jayapal, Ms. Sánchez, Mr. Pallone, Mr. Carson of Indiana, and Ms. Omar) submitted the following resolution today in the House of Representatives. The resolution was referred to the Committee on Oversight and Reform:

Whereas the millions of American Muslims, immigrant and native born, comprise two percent of the total population of the United States, and have built a vibrant community of diverse races, ethnicities, viewpoints, and backgrounds; Whereas many African slaves brought to the Americas, including the American colonies, later known as the United States of America, were Muslim, and made innumerable contributions to the founding of our Nation; Whereas American Muslims have long served in the Nation’s Armed Forces and fought in all major United States conflicts, from the Revolutionary War to present day, with more than 5,000 Muslims currently serving in the Armed Forces and many Muslims having made the ultimate sacrifice for the United States, including Army Corporal Kareem Rashad Sultan Khan (1987–2007), and Army Captain Humayun Saqib Muazzam Khan (1976–2004);

Whereas countless American Muslims contribute to our Nation’s economy and well-being as physicians, business owners, laborers, service workers, teachers engaging the next generation of Americans, and police officers, firefighters, and first responders saving lives every day; and Whereas American Muslims have and continue to make important contributions to the advancement of our Nation that are fundamental to our shared American values, society, and culture, including— (1) military veterans like Revolutionary War Virginian Corporal Bampett Muhamed, Yusuf Ben Ali (also known as Joseph Benhaley), who served in George Washington’s Army and fought with General Thomas Sumter in South Carolina, Civil War Union Captain Moses Osman, who was the highest ranking Muslim in that war, World War II Army Corporal Sheikh Nazim Abdul-Kariem, who served in the Battle of Normandy and the Battle of the Bulge, Army Sergeant First Class and Korean war prisoner-of-war Mujahid Mohammed, retired Chief Master Sergeant of the United States Air Force Talib M. Shareef, who now serves as Imam at the Nation’s Mosque in Washington, DC, and the countless other American Muslims who served valiantly in the First and Second World Wars, the Korean and Vietnam wars, and most recent conflicts; (2) Yarrow Mamout, the freed African-American Muslim slave who later became one of the first shareholders of the second chartered bank in America, the Columbia Bank; (3) famed architect and designer Fazlur Rahman Khan, who designed the Sears Tower and the John Hancock Center; (4) Mohammad Salman Hamdani, the New York City Police Department cadet and Emergency Medical Technician who heroically died helping others in the aftermath of the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Center; (5) Dr. Farouk El-Baz, geologist and remote sensing scientist who, as Secretary of the Landing Site Selection Committee for the Apollo missions, Principal Investigator of Visual Observations and Photography, and Chairman of the Astronaut Training Group of the Apollo Photo Team (1967–1972), was instrumental in helping NASA identify the landing sites on the Moon for the Apollo program;

(6) noted academics and researchers like Dr. Sulayman S. Nyang, professor and former chairman of the African Studies Department at Howard University, Dr. Intisar A. Rabb, Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and a director of its Islamic Legal Studies Program, Asifa Quraishi-Landes, comparative law expert at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Zareena Grewal, American studies and religious studies scholar at Yale University; (7) health professionals like Dr. Elias A. Zerhouni, director of the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Heather Laird-Johnson, Founder, President, and Director of the Center for Muslim Mental Health and Islamic Psychology at the University of Southern California, and Dr. Zehra Siddiqui, who focuses on providing health care for underserved populations including homeless individuals, immigrants, and those without health insurance; (8) Olympic medalists like boxer Muhammad Ali, track and field athlete Dalilah Muhammad, and fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad; (9) professional athletes like basketball players Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Hakeem Olajuwon, and Shaquille O’Neal, football players like Muhammad Wilkerson, Ameer Abdullah, brothers Husain and Hamza Abdullah, and two-time world heavyweight champion Hasim Shariff Rahman; (10) religious leaders like African-American Muslim imam, civil rights activist and reformer Hajj Malik El Shabazz, also known as Malcolm X; (11) Imam Warith Deen Mohammed (born Wallace D. Muhammad), referred to by many as America’s Imam, an African-American Muslim leader and theologian who worked tirelessly to unite the diverse Muslim community and Nation, and, in 1992, was the first American Muslim to deliver the invocation for the Senate;

(12) public servants like Dr. Ahmed Hassan Zewail, who won a Nobel Prize in Chemistry and was a Presidential Council of Advisors on Science and Technology member, former Deputy Director of the United States National Security Council and Nixon administration advisor Dr. Robert (Farooq) D. Crane, and Zalmay Kha¬lil¬zad, who served as the United States Ambassador to Afghanistan from 2003–2005, Iraq from 2005–2007, and the United Nations from 2007–2009, and Adam Sha¬koor, the first Muslim judge in the country; (13) elected officials like Indiana Congressman André Carson, Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, Michigan Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, Virginia State representative Sam Rasoul, Pennsylvania State representative Movita Johnson-Harrell, and local council members, including Aisha Wahab from Hayward, California, Susan Dabaja of Dearborn, Michigan, Shahid Shafi of Southlake, Texas, and Basheer Jones from Cleveland, Ohio; (14) entrepreneurs and business leaders like chairman, CEO, and president of Ethan Allen Interiors Inc., Farooq Kathwari, National Football League Jacksonville Jaguars owner and business tycoon Shahid Khan, Islamic fashion designer and Verona Collection company founder Lisa Vogl, founder of Iman Cosmetics and philanthropist Zara (Iman) Mohamed Abdulmajid, hair and spa care business magnate Farouk Shami, Chobani Greek Yogurt founder, chairman, and CEO, Hamdi Ulukaya, and Dr. Mark Humayun, who co-invented Argus series retina implants; and (15) entertainers like actor and comedian Hasan Minaj, rapper Lupe Fiasco, the first Muslim actor to win an Oscar, Mahershala Ali, the creator of Mr. Robot, Sam Esmail, and comedian and actor Maysoon Zayid: Now, therefore, be it Resolved, That the House of Representatives recognizes the historic and valuable contributions of the American Muslim community to the United States. [Congress]

Whither Pluralism in the USA?
April 1: Pluralism still remains a far cry in the USA where Christian evangelism and conservatism got rejuvenated by the presidency of Donald Trump. More than a quarter of Americans identify themselves as  evangelists who see themselves as Jesus Christ’s soldiers for making the USA a Christian nation. Eighty percent of white evangelicals voted for and, by and large, continue to support President Trump. While such a support from the conservative wing of Christianity may seem like a fundamental contradiction, but to Trump’s faithful supporters, it is Providence at work in human history. They believe in Trump,and like any blind believers, they will not change their allegiance to him no matter what the ‘liberal’ media say about their beloved president.  [By Dr. Habib Siddiqui]

Record number of Muslims attend congressional meetings on national Muslim advocacy day
April 2:
The U.S. Council on Muslim Organizations (USCMO) held its 5th Annual National Muslim Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill on Monday April 1 and Tuesday April 2, 2019. More than 500 delegates from 28 states met with more than 250 elected officials and congressional staffers during the record-breaking fifth annual “National Muslim Advocacy Day” on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.
“This year’s National Muslim Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill was remarkably outstanding and energetic with high participation of youth, said USCMO Secretary General Oussama Jammal. Jammal added, “We thank the many members of Congress who opened their doors to their Muslim constituents and engaged them in a fruitful discussion.” “American Muslims are turning out in greater numbers every year to participate in National Muslim Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill to ensure that their voices and stories are being heard by their elected representatives in Congress,” said USCMO National Muslim Advocacy Day Steering Committee Chair Robert McCaw. The Muslim delegates participating in this year’s advocacy day event met with a third of the House of Representatives and almost half of the Senate. In the U.S. House of Representatives, Muslim delegates urged their members of Congress to co-sponsor and support Rep. Judy Chu’s House Resolution 276, a Resolution Recognizing the History of American Muslims and Their Contributions to our Nation. USCMO members applauded Congresswoman Chu for introducing the resolution a month before the month-long fast of Ramadan that begins on or about Wednesday, May 6. Muslim delegates also supported a number of legislative measures that would:Repeal the Muslim Ban: A round-up endorsement of all legislation pushing back against the Trump Administration’s Muslim travel ban. That includes supporting legislation that would either defund the ban, repeal the ban, or amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to address the legal framework under which the ban was implemented.Support Immigration Reform: Supporting DREAMers, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders by endorsing the Dream and Promise Act. Seeking to end family separation and detention at the Southern Border by supporting the Alternatives to Detention Act of 2019.Support Human Rights for Muslims Worldwide: Urging the United States to continue standing up for the human rights of Muslims internationally, by supporting legislation that addresses the arbitrary detention of Uighur Muslims in China and condemning violence against Rohingya Muslims in Burma.Support Reforming Bank De-Risking Practices: Supporting Bank Secrecy Act Reform: Establishes a Civil Liberties and Privacy Officer who must be consulted each time regulations are developed or reviewed. [USCMO]

Anti-Boycott legislation around the country
April 10: In response to the growing movement for Palestinian freedom, over 100 measures targeting boycotts and other advocacy for Palestinian rights have been introduced in state and local legislatures and the U.S. Congress since 2014. As of April 10, 2019, 27 states have adopted anti-boycott laws, including 5 executive orders issued by governors. Palestine Legal and other civil rights groups are fighting back! Flagging potential constitutional violations, federal courts have already stopped two states from enforcing these laws. Lawmakers in
Kansas and Arizona have opted to change the laws to avoid the litigation. [Palestine Legal]

Sharp Rise in the Share of Americans Saying Muslims Face Discrimination

April 15: The public sees widespread discrimination against several racial, ethnic and religious groups in the U.S., according to he Pew Research Center survey released today. Muslims, in particular, are seen as facing more discrimination than other groups in society; 82% say Muslims face some discrimination, with 56% saying they encounter a lot of discrimination – highest among nine groups included in the PEW survey. Majorities in both Democrats and Republican groups say there is at least some discrimination against many groups, including Muslims, blacks, gays and lesbians, and Hispanics. But the share of Democrats who say each of these groups face discrimination is significantly higher than the share of Republicans who say the same. For instance, 92% of Democrats, compared with 69% of Republicans, say Muslims face at least some discrimination. [PEW]

Hate Rally at Maryland University condemned
April 18: The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned a hate rally targeting Muslims and other minorities held earlier today at Towson University in Maryland, and urged action to address an increasingly intolerant climate on campus. According to witnesses, protestors carrying large signs with obscenities and slurs targeting Muslims and other minority groups were met with hundreds of students who gathered to denounce their bigotry. Last year, CAIR condemned an anti-Semitic attack against Jewish students. 

127 civil advocacy groups urge nation's political parties to repeal Trump’s Muslim Ban
April 22:
A coalition of 127 national and state civil advocacy groups Monday (April 22) issued an open letter addressed to the heads of national political parties, calling on them to include repealing the Muslim Ban and reversing the historic-low cap on admitted refugees as signature issues in their 2020 party platforms. The joint letter came in advance of the 2020 national party conventions held by the Democratic, Republican, Green, and Libertarian Parties. During these conventions each political party updates their party platform, embodying the principles and strategic goals of the party for the next four years.  It may be recalled that on June 26, 2018, the Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, ruled in favor of the third iteration of President Donald Trump’s travel ban (known as Muslim Ban 3.0) on five Muslim countries. The current ban, announced in September 2017, prohibits entry into the US by most people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen. It also affects two non-Muslim majority countries, blocking travelers from North Korea and some Venezuelan government officials and their families. In his decision, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that Trump had used his executive authority to “suspend entry of aliens into the United States.”  “The [order] is expressly premised on legitimate purposes: preventing entry of nationals who cannot be adequately vetted and inducing other nations to improve their practices,” Roberts wrote. “The text says nothing about religion.” [AMP Report]

District Judge strikes down Texas Anti-Israeli Boycott Law
April 25: Judge Pitman of the Western District of Texas today issued a 56-page opinion striking down H.B. 89, the Texas Anti-BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) Act, as facially unconstitutional. The Court held that the Texas Anti-BDS Act “threatens to suppress unpopular ideas” and “manipulate the public debate” on Israel and Palestine “through coercion rather than persuasion.”  The Court concluded: “This the First Amendment does not allow.” Every single “No Boycott of Israel” clause in every single state contact in Texas has today been stricken as unconstitutional.  The Attorney General of Texas is no longer permitted to include or enforce “No Boycott of Israel” clauses in any state contract. Judge Pitman’s order came in response to a lawsuit filed by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), on behalf of Bahia Amawi, a Texas speech language pathologist who lost her job because she refused to sign a “No Boycott of Israel” clause. In September 2018, a federal court blocked Arizona from enforcing its anti-boycott law, finding that the law likely violates the First Amendment. A federal court also issued a preliminary injunction against Kansas' enforcement of its anti-boycott law. In January 2018, issuing the first decision of its kind, a federal judge blocked enforcement of a Kansas law targeting boycotts of Israel, ruling in an ACLU lawsuit that the First Amendment protects the right to engage in political boycotts. [AMP Report]

Trump working to designate the Muslim Brotherhood as a 'terror' group
April 30:
After declaring the Iranian Revolutionary Guards as a foreign terrorist organization, the Trump administration is working to designate the Muslim Brotherhood a foreign "terrorist" organization"The president has consulted with his national security team and leaders in the region who share his concern, and this designation is working its way through the internal process," White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said today Tellingly, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps was declared a terrorist organization at the request of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Donald Trump is likely to declare the Muslim Brotherhood a terror group at the suggestion of  Egyptian President Field Marshal Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. [AMP Report]

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