All Articles Tagged "muslim"
By now we all know that Madonna can be a bit out there. Especially when it comes to her stage performances. You know humping the stage in a tattered wedding dress, stripping, doing cartwheels with the likes of M.I.A. and Nicki Minaj. You never know quite what you’re going to get when you spend a night with Madge.
Last night, in Washington D.C. was no different.
In the middle of her concert, the pop icon endorsed President Obama, even writing “Obama” on her back. She told the crowd:
“Y’all better vote for f**king Obama, OK? For better or worse, all right? We have a black Muslim in the White House. Now that’s some amazing Shyte. It means there is hope in this country. And Obama is fighting for gay rights, so support the man, goddamnit.”
Maybe since Madonna had been overseas for so long she’s a bit out of touch with what’s going on stateside. While it would be great for this country to get to a point where we can elect a Muslim, President Obama is not that dude. In fact, the rumor that he ever was or is still a Muslim is one that many believe was another tactic his opponents (and the Tea Party) used in an attempt to discredit him.
Madge, have you been listening to the Tea Partiers?
If I were interested in developing some type of conspiracy theory, I could argue that Madonna was trying to underhandedly sabotage President Obama’s reelection campaign; but since I’m not (today), I just chalk it up to a huge, ignorant slip.
Are you surprised Madonna is lending her support to President Obama’s campaign? Do you think her slip will hurt him politically?
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Erykah Badu was scheduled to perform at a concert in Kuala Lumpur tomorrow night, but when Malaysian officials came across an image of the singer’s body art, which includes the Arabic word for Allah on her shoulder, they shut her event down, saying Erykah isn’t a suitable role model for young Malaysians who are mostly Muslim.
Information Minister Rais Yatim said in a statement that government officials forbid Erykah’s concert because her body art is “an insult to Islam and a very serious offense.” He added that the photo of the artwork, which appeared in Malaysia’s most widely read English-language daily, The Star, “triggered public criticism that could jeopardize national security and cause a negative impact to the government’s image.”
Because Erykah was already in Malaysia, government officials said that she can stay as a tourist but will not be allowed to perform. Razman Razali, managing director of the show’s Malaysian organizer, Pineapple Concerts, told Reuters Erykah is “worried and dismayed” and said his company hopes the decision will be reversed.
Do you think Erykah still has a chance of performing?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
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If you’re Muslim in America, chances are you’re happier with your life than the general American public. According to the Christian Science Monitor, a Pew Research Center survey reveals that 82 percent of Muslim Americans are happier with the way things are going in their lives.
The survey, which was created to study the demographics, experiences and opinions of Muslim Americans, also shows that 56 percent of Muslims are content with the US, compared to 23 percent of the general public. In 2007, a previous survey conducted on the Muslim American demographic, revealed that 38 percent of Muslim Americans were more content with the way things were going in this country, compared to 32 percent of the general public.
The survey, as well as its 2007 predecessor, was conducted by Pew researchers curious to find out if public fear of home-grown terrorism had led Muslim Americans to feel increasingly segregated in the US and in anger turn to support extremist views.
Scott Keeter, the Pew director of survey research, tells the Christian Science Monitor that “there’s been no increase in favorable views of Al Qaeda, of suicide bombing, or Islamic extremism.” In addition, although Muslim Americans admit that they do often face discrimination, they “do not regard the American people as particularly unfriendly to them.”
The recent results show Muslim Americans experienced a change of heart in their opinion of Obama. In 2007 only 15 percent were impressed with the president. The current survey results also reveal that they are more satisfied with President Obama’s leadership at 76 percent than the general public, which show at 46 percent.
Although 70 percent say they have “a very negative opinion” of Al Qaeda, the beliefs on Islamic extremism shift within the community. Native-born Muslims are more likely to support Islamic extremism that Muslims born elsewhere. And African-American Muslims are least likely to say they have a “very unfavorable view of Al Qaeda.”
As far as discrimination goes, 55 percent believe that being a Muslim has become more difficult after 9/11. Twenty-two percent say they have endured name-calling and 21 percent have underwent added scrutiny at airports.
According to the survey, 2.75 million Muslims currently reside in the US. About two thirds wire born abroad of those 18 and older, and 25 percent arrived in the US since 2000.
The nation of Nigeria, with its 150 million inhabitants — split almost evenly between Christians in the south and Muslims in the north — might be a half-century old. But it is still facing growing pains. A year before it’s 50th anniversary as a sovereign nation in 2010, Nigeria’s most famous writer Chinua Achebe published an essay making this statement about his homeland: “Nigeria is neither my mother nor my father. Nigeria is a child. Gifted, enormously talented, prodigiously endowed, and incredibly wayward.”
The “wayward” ways of the most populous nation in Africa has international policy experts concerned, not only for the future of the oil industry there that America depends on — but also for the social stability of a country with so much promise. Ironically, the material well-being of Nigeria depends greatly on whether its warring religious factions can get along. So far, the Mulsim-Christian divide has continually fueled bloody conflict, culminating in an attack last Friday on a United Nations building in the capital city of Abuja that killed 19 people.
The attack was orchestrated by the home-grown Muslim terrorist group Boko Haram, a faction seen as expressing the frustrations many Muslims feel as a disenfranchised group. Even though oil-rich Nigeria is the largest African exporter of the resource to the U.S., most of the oil comes from the south which is populated by Christians. In addition, the vast majority of the educated elite both within the country and abroad are Christians, including the current president. Muslims in the north have responded to their relative powerlessness by rejecting secular education, medicine and other practices that are associated with the Christian way of life.
Dear Very Smart Brotha,
I was dating a guy for awhile. We had some deep conversations of our past and he never judged me. When he confided in me of some addictions he had and how he was a practicing Muslim. I listened and didn’t judge him either. Knew the only one to judge was God. Things were great until one day he told me that I was neither a friend or a girlfriend and that hurt so much. I didn’t talk to him for a few days. That is when he asked what was wrong. I told him I was hurt by what he said on how he saw me as nothing to him. He laughed and explained it was just a joke. I was furious. I told him that it was a bad joke and we ended it right there. A few weeks after he contacted me and wanted to see me because he missed me. I told him after some deep thought that his addictions were hard to accept since I dealt with them from a previous relationship and I felt that with my religion being Christian it would be hard for us to be together. He laughed and said that all that was a joke and cant believe that I fell for it. We stopped talking and I moved on. Well he contacted me again apologized to me, saying he missed me and wants me back that he will never joke like that again. Part of me wants to move on some of me wants to see if he is willing to change. What do I do? Everyone says to forget him and how Id be crazy if I went back to him. Wondering?
The scope of religion has changed very much over the years, and if you’re going to switch up your beliefs and own it with pride, a good place to do that–for the most part–is in this country, where religious experimentation is tolerated (Muslims still get a lot of crap, though if you live under a rock). People that were once Christians are becoming Muslims, Catholics can become Buddhists, and many people simply describe themselves as spiritual beings these days. And black people are some of the most religious people out. But no matter what you claim to believe in, religion does seem to matter big time in the dating world.
Think about it. If you met someone at work and simply became friends, you probably wouldn’t trip if they told you they didn’t believe in God. But if you met that same person and were attracted to their physical attributes as well as their personality, then them telling you that when you die, that’s it, may have a huge effect on the length of your correspondence with one another. There are however, different levels of atheism, with the mildest form being a denouncement of religion, so keep an open mind to that. But I pose the question to you: Could you get over if a man you really like, or are already dating, told you they were an atheist? Could the couple that doesn’t pray together stay together?
Earlier this week, French police arrested two veiled-women who were protesting the country’s law banning face hiding, also known as the burqas ban. Just hours after the legislation too effect, dozens of burqa-clad women staged a protest in front of Notre Dame, claiming that the law violates their right to freedom of religion.
For those who are unaware, the ban pertains to the burqa, a loose, full-body garment that includes a mesh window over the face, and the niqab, a full-face veil that only leaves an opening for the eyes. Though the burqa is primarily worn in Middle Eastern and North African countries, you can find variations of it in many urban American cities where there is a large African American Islamic population. Even though the burqa has been around for centuries, it gained international attention during the Afghanistan invasion when Secretary of State Colin Powell, among others, used the garment to highlight the extremity of the Taliban.
But it wasn’t until 2003 when the veil became a problem in France. That year, former French President Jacques Chirac introduced legislation that banned Muslim girls from wearing headscarves to school. Chirac said that most French people saw “something aggressive” in the veil and that the secular state could not tolerate “ostentatious signs of religious proselytism.”
In 2010, current President Nicolas Sarkozy and France’s right-winged Parliament followed in the footsteps of Chirac by passing what would become the burqa ban. Though the ban did not specifically call out the burqa, it does state that it was illegal to hide the face in public spaces. According to Sarkozy, the ban was based on the idea that “the veils imprison women and contradict this secular nation’s values of dignity and equality.” Under the law, veiled women risk a fine of 150 euro ($215 US) or special citizenship classes.
Many women in France and abroad have questioned the legitimacy of the law. On many levels, the law seems to violate freedom of religion, which is guaranteed under the country’s 1789 Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen. But the real burqa-clad elephant in the room is this: how is banning the burqa or niqab any less authoritarian than forcing women to wear it?
The problem with the ban is that Sarkozy and the law’s supporters fail to see how the banning of clothing, which many women wear for religious reasons, will most likely further marginalize these devout-religious women by making it impossible for them to engage in work, school and other social activities. Ironically, Sarkozy claims that “equality” is the motive behind instituting the law.
In addition, the question of what differentiates secular society from what some folks deem as symbols of extremist Islam is being settled on the bodies of women. Women are being used as some sort of litmus test to determine what are ‘acceptable’ practices of a religion. Hence, France’s ban on burqas is nothing more than a brash throwback to colonialism when the subjugation of a group’s customs and traditions where justified as a way of ‘saving’ them from their barbaric and primitive ways. In essence, France’s racism, sexism and xenophobic is as thinly veiled as the burqa.
Charing Ball is the author of the blog People, Places & Things.
Another day, another report about the “mystery” behind President Obama.
A new Pew Research Center study released Thursday says one in five Americans believes—incorrectly—that Obama is Muslim. Headlines read “Obama’s Religion Still a Mystery For Some.”
Who are the “some” that still find Obama’s religion a mystery? Yes, I know that the sum of the “some” = one in five Americans, which equals 20 percent of the population, but seriously, I want to meet a real, live person who thinks that Obama refrains from pork and alcohol, and prays to Allah five times a day.
There’s so much hoopla these days about identity in America. Black president? Scream! White fashion editor at Essence magazine? Scream! We’ve decided to give you a snapshot of diversity that transcends “black” and “white”: a list of celebs who practice varied religions. Here’s to celebrating difference—and the joys of humankind. Check out our list and let us know in the comments section if there are any celebs or religions you’d love to add. Read the rest of this entry »
Read the rest of this entry »
By Wadzanai Mhute
Violence against women has been on the increase world wide. According to the Global Post “Not only do one in three women worldwide experience some form of physical violence, but one in three teenage girls has been sexually abused by a boyfriend. In 2008, 157 women were killed by their husbands or partners in France. That same year in Pakistan, out of 8,000 officially reported cases of violence against women, about 1,000 women ended up dead.”