In February, Black History Month is observed to acknowledge African Americans’ accomplishments and valuable contributions throughout history. To commemorate this occasion, the Muslim American Society (MAS) organized an event to showcase the significant role played by Black Muslims in shaping the United States history. The gathering aimed to educate people about the history of Black Muslims in America and pay tribute to the renowned Black Muslim personalities who have enriched this legacy. The history of Black Muslims in the country is multifaceted and prosperous, characterized by struggles and achievements, progress and setbacks. This legacy results from the hard work and dedication of numerous individuals, many of whom remain uncelebrated or unrecognized.
The event organized by the Muslim American Society (MAS) to showcase notable Black Muslim personalities in American history is a powerful reminder of the invaluable contributions made by Black Muslims to this nation. It emphasizes the significance of valuing and learning from this legacy. As we commemorate Black History Month, it is crucial to acknowledge that the history of Black Muslims in America is an integral part of this broader narrative. It is essential to continue honoring and celebrating the valuable contributions of Black Muslims to our society while recognizing their ongoing struggles in the pursuit of equality and justice.
Along with recognizing renowned Black Muslim personalities, the MAS gathering offered a chance to comprehend Black Muslims’ hardships in contemporary times. Black Muslims constitute a diverse and complex community comprising various ethnicities, nationalities, and cultural backgrounds. Nevertheless, they frequently confront unique challenges stemming from anti-Black racism and Islamophobia. For instance, Black Muslims may endure discrimination and bias from non-Muslim Americans and non-Black Muslims. They may also face preconceived notions and misunderstandings about their identity and beliefs and often feel marginalized or excluded from mainstream Muslim communities.
Despite these difficulties, Black Muslims have persistently played a significant part in American society. They have led the fight for civil rights and social justice, striving to tackle police brutality, mass incarceration, and systemic racism. Black Muslim groups and individuals have also been actively involved in rendering humanitarian assistance and support to communities in distress, both domestically and internationally.
Spotlight on American Muslim Scholar and Spoken Word Artists: Imam Mikail Stewart Saadiq and Tariq Touré
Imam Mikail Stewart Saadiq is a distinguished American Muslim scholar and community leader who has established himself as an eminent figure in his field. He is the founder and president of the Institute of Knowledge and a resident scholar at the Islamic Center of Irvine, California. In addition, he is a highly sought-after speaker, having delivered lectures and sermons at numerous mosques and events across the United States. Imam Saadiq’s educational background is diverse, encompassing Islamic and secular disciplines. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from California State University, Fullerton, and a Master’s in Islamic Studies from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California. Moreover, he has studied Arabic and Islamic sciences at various institutions in the United States and abroad.
Imam Saadiq’s reputation extends beyond his roles as a scholar and community leader, as he is also recognized for his activism in pursuing social justice. He has actively participated in campaigns and initiatives aimed at advancing civil rights, ending police brutality, and confronting other societal issues that impact marginalized communities. His unwavering commitment to social justice and community service has earned him respect from the American Muslim community and beyond. He is widely admired for his extensive knowledge, dedication, and passion for social justice causes.
Tariq Touré is a renowned American spoken word artist, poet, and activist whose performances are known for blending poetry, storytelling, and social commentary to address various issues affecting Black communities in the United States. From police brutality to systemic racism and poverty, Touré uses his work to shed light on the struggles of marginalized communities. He is a spoken word artist, community activist, and advocate for social justice. Touré has played an instrumental role in various campaigns and initiatives to promote racial equity and end oppression, including his active participation in the Black Lives Matter movement. Touré has become a significant voice in the spoken word and social justice communities through his influential and inspiring work, offering hope and inspiration to audiences nationwide.
Tariq Touré’s performances have been featured at various events and locations across the United States, such as universities, festivals, and community gatherings. He has also produced several spoken word albums, including “Blk Grl Pwr” and “Conscious Ratchet,” which showcase his impactful and reflective style. As a result of his influential and thought-provoking work, Touré has earned significant respect within the spoken word and social justice communities, serving as a source of inspiration and empowerment for audiences through his message of hope and activism.
How You Can Support and Empower Black Muslims in America
Reflecting on the legacy of Black Muslims in America and the obstacles they still face, it is essential to acknowledge how non-Black Muslims can support and amplify their voices. This involves actively listening to and learning from Black Muslims while working towards dismantling racism and Islamophobia within our communities. A meaningful way for non-Black Muslims can uplift and empower the Black Muslim community is by supporting organizations that address their challenges. For instance, the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN) is based in Chicago. It focuses on poverty, health disparities, and criminal justice reform in predominantly Black and Latino neighborhoods.
Similarly, the Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative (MuslimARC) is a national organization that provides education and advocacy on race and racism within Muslim communities.
Numerous Muslim relief and development organizations provide essential humanitarian aid and support to communities affected by poverty, conflict, and natural disasters. Islamic Relief USA, Helping Hand for Relief and Development (HHRD), and the Zakat Foundation of America are among these organizations. By supporting these groups and addressing the unique challenges Black Muslims face, we can pay tribute to the legacy of Black Muslim figures and strive for a more equitable and just society for all. Let us celebrate Black Muslims’ contributions to American history and continue to work towards a future where people are respected and valued regardless of their religion, race, or background.