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Thank you, Colin Powell

Tuesday October 21, 2008


During a recent campaign stop, a woman in the audience told Senator McCain that she didn't trust Senator Obama because "he's an Arab." McCain attempted to correct her with the response, "No, ma'am, he is a decent family man, a citizen..." While probably unintentional, he offensively implied that being an Arab is incompatible with, the opposite of, being a respectable person.

This week, former Secretary of State Colin Powell came out in support of Senator Obama's bid for the presidency. In his comments with "Meet the Press" (reported by CNN), Powell corrected the rumors that Obama is a Muslim, and criticized the ignorant comments and responses from within his own political party and the media.


Powell offered his own direct response to these charges. Acknowledging that Obama is in fact a Christian, Powell asked further, "What if he is [a Muslim]? Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country? No, that's not America."


Powell went on to relate the story of a mother whom he had seen mourning her son at Arlington Cemetery. Powell saw a photo of her in a magazine, and was moved by the scene: the mother resting her head on her son's headstone, the display of the fallen soldier's awards, including a Purple Heart award for service in Iraq. The fallen soldier's name: Kareem Khan, a 20-year-old New Jersey-born Muslim.


Powell's comments are a welcome public reminder that Muslims are part of the United States cultural mosaic, a faith community that faces the same challenges and joys, and the same care for their homeland, as any other. Flippant comments and ignorant stereotypes have no place in the public discourse.


Comments (4)See All Posts

October 23, 2008 at 2:47 am


(1) Khadijah U. Bilal says:

In the Name of Allah(God)!


As salaam alaikum Huda!


Praise be to God for your work, MashaAllah , and praise be to God for presenting Gen. Colin Powell as the instrument to tell the masses to awaken from their prejudicial behavior towards Muslims. My heart was filled with joy and my eyes with tears, that Allah (swt) sent an honorable man to say what needed to be said. I watched with great humility as Gen. Powell unhesitatingly presented his views and with great clarity said,”so what if he was a Muslim?”


The comments that Senator Obama was a Muslim were said with such vehemence as though something was sinfully wrong with being a Muslim. The negativity through which those terrible comments flared, sent hatred throughout the airways.The implications that if Senator Obama was a Muslilm, then something was definitely wrong for him to be President of the United States.


Senator McClain, said that Senator Obama was not a Muslim, that Senator Obama is a decent upstanding man. Senator McClain presented his comments as though being a Muslim was synonymous with being evil, a terrible thing to be.


I pray that the world comes to know that the Arabic word Muslim means “one who submits to the will of God”. And the pronounciation of the word Muslim is not with a long u or double oo, but with a soft u. In English it would be something close to the sound of “us” somewhat like the “u” in crust. It really is not difficult to say or to be.


Allah says in the Quran that He created us all differently and not for us to hate each other, but to know each other. As Muslims, we are to seek peace. We seek to regard our neighbor and to care for our neighbor regardless of our neighbor’s religious belief. According to the teachings of Allah’s(God)last Prophet, ( peace be upon him) We, Muslims are to look after our neighbor. Our neighbors are those who live near us, 40 houses in any direction. Now do people who live by these teachings sound like someone a candidate for president should not be? Muslims help make America a better place. We would not plot to destroy the country where we can freely practice our religon, be educated, and live freely. We are God-fearing and peaceful. We are never aggressors.


I appreciate that Gen. Powell made clarified his views on Senator Mccains negative comments about Senator Obama not being a Muslim. America was founded by people who fought wars to practice religion as they saw best for themselves. Being a Muslim is in keeping with the peacemakers that realize their purpose is to worship Allah(God)and none other. Therefore,referencing Muslims as some terrible thing to be is not in keeping with the founding principles of America.


A neighbor that is a Muslim will maintain peace in the neighborhood, feed the hungry, visit the sick, protect the children and the animals. In addition to the Ten Commndments, Muslims adhere to all directives from Allah(God). Because Allah has commanded us to seek knowledge,we strive to become the best that we can be for the pleasure of Allah. We provide services to our communities. As Americans, and emmigrants in America.


We are Ph.Ds, medical doctors, spiritual leaders,architects, nurses, plumbers, therapists, kindergarten teachers, cooks, lawyers, police officers, counselors,judges,landscapers, students, in the U.S. Armed Forces,psychiatrists, cleaners, Mothers, Fathers and fulfill thousands of positive roles. We live to worship Allah.


The society will not find a better behaving person than the Muslim believer. We are not perfect,but the our reglion of Islam is. We pray and strive everyday to become, more dutiful servants of Allah. We all struggle to improve our weaker selves.


Do not let the ugliness of the terrible attacks on our America cause you to think that Allah(God)would let millions of people the world over that worship him,become swayed by the evil workings of the devil. Being a Muslim is no more being a terrorists than every Christian or Jew is another Timothy McVeigh or Son of Sam. Those evil people foreign and American will have to answer to Allah(God)for their horrendous terrorists actions. All of terrorist,including those yet to be identified will have to answer to Allah(God).


We all should conduct ourselves honorably; not just the Muslims. We all should examine our words and deeds. The Prophet Muhammed(peace be upon him) of 1400 years ago was sent to the world as a messenger for all mankind. He taught this simple lesson(paraphrased); He said that a Muslim is not a Muslim until he/she desires for her sister or brother, that which he/she desires for herself. We are commanded to be righteous all the time and with everyone. We follow the words of Allah in the Quran and the example and guidance of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) The character of the Muslim is to be honorable, truthful and kind. Just as the character of those who follow the teachings of Jesus Christ(peace be upon him)


Thank you for your gracious comments about Gen. Powell. He is a wise and fair leader. America is moves forward because of people like General Powell and you.


October 26, 2008 at 4:22 am

(2) Tony says:

I applaud Colin Powell for his opinion on Obama ’s religion. He should have gone further though. What if Obama does not believe in any deity ? Why is believing in a deity so important to running for president ? General Powell had taken a step in the right direction. A lot more should be done to dispel the nonsensical myth that one need to be a christian ( esp the evangelical type) to be a good person and good leader. You need only to look at the current one in the White House to see the fallacy of this thought.


October 28, 2008 at 9:06 am

(3) alhaji abass says:



October 28, 2008 at 9:12 am


(4) Sana says:

I am an American citizen but I have converted to Islam. It saddens me to see that too many catorgorize Muslims. If those who do not understand the real meaning of Islam, would read up a little more then they would see that those who are suicide bombers are extremeists. When you are Muslim it is all about Allah, charity, family, and love. Allah does not condone killings in His Name. Please those that do not understand Muslims,especially women that cover their heads, out of respect for Allah and themselves, ask questions instead of judging. Allah bless you.

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