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From the Editor's Desk – The 4th of July and What It Means To Be Muslim in America

Posted on Jul 03, 2020
Dilshad Ali


Dilshad Ali

As salaamu alaikum and hello everyone!

As this goes live, it occurs to me that the Fourth of July is here, and I don't really know how I feel about that. Before the ultra-patriotic folk of our country come at me, let me say I'm still grateful to live here. Part of being a proud American, I believe, is the ability to engage in criticism for the betterment of our societies.

The freedoms that are so baked into our American DNA and codified in our national documents are ones I greatly appreciate – but we can't talk about freedom and American values without addressing the elephant(s) in the room and talking about why rising up against injustice and fighting for the betterment of our country is part and parcel of being American. And, to be Muslim in America is something extraordinary.

To be Muslim in America is to learn our history in this part of the world and to understand how important and crucial the experiences of Black Muslims – who shaped Islam in America – are as well how our immigrant parents came to this country and thrust their stakes in this ground to shape and be part of the ongoing stories of this country.

We stand at a crucial time right now as a nation, ravaged by the COVID-19 global pandemic, reeling from ongoing violence against Black people, and reckoning with so many dark parts of our history and our failings as a nation. I don't mean to be all down and depressing here, but we have a lot of work to do in all our communities. And so while many of us have right now aren't necessarily in the mood for stars and fireworks, let's use our nation's "birthday" as a catalyst to do the work. Here are some suggestions to get us all started:

1. Get to know what's happening in your region better. Who are your elected officials, especially locally? What do they stand for? 

2. Black Lives Matter – how can we educate ourselves and how we can better support our Black sisters and brothers

3. Get involved with American Muslim communities by supporting local causes, charitable organizations and projects, and institutes of knowledge. 

Muslim woman in flag hijab cartoon

Image source: Pinterest

Here at Haute Hijab, we are committed to not only bring you "the world's best hijabs for the world's most powerful women" (punctuated by our "Live Boldly" campaign this month) but also to being a platform for news, issues and all stories pertaining to Muslim women.

This month, we're taking part in the #StopHateForProfit campaign and halting all Facebook ads to hold them accountable for the hate speech and censorship on their platform. We are also are launching our ChangeMakers summer series on the blog, featuring dynamic Muslim women from different professions and parts of the country who are catalysts of change in their communities. Our hope is that you will be able to see yourself in one of these women and be proud to be a part of the sisterhood of Muslim women contributing to the fabric of this nation. 

Before I sign off, my friends, I want to remind us that we are still in the midst of a global pandemic. We are all affected by this in some way, shape, or form, and we all have a part to play in keeping each other safe. As states open up, practice our values of looking out for each other and do your part to protect yourself, your families, and others by social distancing, wearing masks, and being careful. It's is exhausting. Believe me, I know. But we are in a marathon here, and we must keep going as safely as possible.

Let's commit to being change-makers in whatever areas of life we are passionate about, no matter how big or how small. May we good choices and always say Bismillah-hir-rahman-nir-raheem.

Editorially yours,