This past year has been one of the most politically and socially turbulent in decades.
From unabashed racial animus to wealth inequality increased further by inequitable federal tax legislation, the challenges we face as a nation cannot be overstated. But neither can the positive responses from the best of our country be overlooked. Muslims are running for local and federal office in record numbers, and winning, especially women. Jewish, Christian, and other faith communities are partnering with Muslims in record numbers on gun violence prevention, climate change, and other issues beyond civil rights and hate crimes. Youth are quickly realizing that rallies are important, but not enough to shift the tide in favor of equity and justice for all people. The number of challenges is large, but so too are the opportunities, and the Muslim-American community seems to have woken up. We are confident that our Office for Interfaith and Community Alliances (IOICA) will continue to serve as a platform for our community to grow (through our Policy Fellowship Program), contribute to anti-poverty advocacy (like our #MuslimsAgainstHunger Lobby Day), and stand with faith partners to live out the Prophetic principles of compassion, mercy, and justice that our beloved Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) showed us over 1400 years ago. Our time and place may be different, but the struggles remain the same.
Director, Office for Interfaith and Community Alliances Islamic Society of North America