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Fri. Apr 19th, 2024
November 26, 2016
Dear President-Elect Trump,
As American Muslims committed to the values of our faith and the principles that underpin our country’s democracy, we write to express serious concerns about policies proposed during your campaign as well as announcements regarding appointments to your upcoming administration.
Muslims have been an integral part of the United States since its founding when the first slave ships arrived on its shores.  Today, America’s 3.3 million Muslims are among the country’s most diverse faith groups, representing seventy-seven countries, with African-Americans, South Asians and Arab Americans making up three quarters of our community. Muslims have served and paid the ultimate sacrifice in every war since the American Revolution with more than 3,939 Muslims serving honorably in the U.S. Armed Forces, today and many more in law enforcement.
In fact, Americans who are Muslim contribute positively to every aspect of our society.  Representative examples include U.S. Congressmen Keith Ellison and Andre Carson; U.S. Olympian medalists Ibtihaj Muhammad and Dalila Muhammad; Fazlur Rahman Khan, an engineer who designed the world’s tallest skyscrapers in Chicago; Ahmed Zewail, Nobel Laureate in Chemistry; and Shahid Khan, owner of the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars. We serve our nation as teachers, business owners, factory workers, cab drivers, doctors, lawyers, law enforcement and firefighters.
The values we hold align with those of the overwhelming majority of Americans. According to a recent study by the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU), Muslims are as likely as Protestants to have a strong American identity.  American Muslims who view their faith as important are more likely to say being American is central to their identity. And, those who regularly attend mosques are more likely to be civically engaged.
Like other Americans, we love our country and are committed to preserving religious freedom, equal opportunity and equal protection under the law for all.   As our President-Elect, one of your duties is to ensure our collective safety and security. This includes protecting the First Amendment rights of all Americans to freely practice their faith, without fear, intimidation or reprisal.  This is a particularly critical duty now as the FBI recently reported a 67 percent increase in anti-Muslim hate crimes in 2015.
During and immediately following this year’s presidential election cycle, American Muslim organizations received more reports of anti-Muslim hate crimes than any other period of time since 9/11. Your recent denunciation of such behavior on 60 Minutes was a positive first step, and we urge you to clearly and strongly condemn bigotry, hate crimes and bias-based school bullying directed at any American, including American Muslims. We call on you to make mutual respect and acceptance a hallmark of your presidency.
Furthermore, along with many other Americans, we are deeply troubled by reports that your team is actively considering proposals that would target Muslims based on religion and violate their Constitutional rights. Advisors and members of your transition team have proposed a registry of Muslim immigrants and visitors to this country. Shockingly, an advisor cited the internment of more than 110,000 Japanese Americans during World War II – one of the most shameful moments in our nation’s history – as precedent for targeting Muslims.
We call on you to appoint individuals who have a demonstrated commitment to serving and defending the Constitutional rights of all Americans. It is deeply concerning that you have announced the appointment of individuals to your upcoming Administration with a well documented history of outright bigotry directed at Muslims or advocating that Muslims should not have the same rights as their fellow Americans.  We urge you to reconsider and reject such candidates.
Just as with previous administrations, we will continue to engage all levels of our government to make America great. As engaged citizens, we also pledge to holding you and all elected officials accountable for upholding our Constitution and the equal protections it guarantees. We will raise our voices together with all Americans who share our concerns to protect these values.
We wish you success in your difficult duties as President and hope for a future of progress for all Americans.
Sincerely,
  • Dr. Fadia M. Abaza – Co-Director, ILEARN
  • Engy Abdelkader – Senior Fellow, Georgetown University
  • Habon Abdulle – Executive Director, Women Organizing Women (WOW) Network
  • Sadaf Agha – Outreach Committee, Islamic Center of Irvine
  • Shamira Chothia Ahmed – Co-Founder, The Rahmah Foundation
  • Usman Akhtar – Imam, Danbury Masjid
  • Sara Alattar – Team Educate Lead, Muslim American Society – Chicago
  • Mowlid Ali – Imam, JIAR
  • Dr. Carrie York Al-Karam – Founding Member, Islamic Psychology Research Collaborative
  • Salam Al-Marayati-  President, Muslim Public Affairs Council
  • Abdullah bin Hamid Ali – Senior Faculty of Islamic Law, Zaytuna College
  • Dr. Debbie Almontaser – Founding and Former Principal, Khalil Gibran International Academy
  • Eman Hassaballa Aly – Co-Founder, Collaboryst
  • Shahed Amanullah – Co-Founder, Affinis Labs
  • Noor Anwer – Owner, Ameen Academy
  • Kaiser Aslam  – Chaplain, Center for Islamic Life at Rutgers University
  • Azhar Azeez – President, Islamic Society of North America
  • Saima Azfar – Director of Operations, Islamic Circle of North America
  • Sufia Azmat – Executive Director, Council of Islamic Schools in North America
  • Haleh Banani – Founder, 5 Pillars of Marriage, Pillars of Psychology
  • Hazem Bata – Executive Director, Islamic Society of North America
  • Ahmed Bedier – Founder, United Voices for America
  • Zahid Bukhari – Executive Director, Islamic Circle of North America-CSJ
  • Adem Carroll – Founder, Muslim Progressive Traditionalist Alliance
  • Ismaeel Chartier  – Imam, Islamic Association of Cincinnati
  • Abdalaziz Eddebbarh – Imam, Ibn Asheer Institute
  • Hesham El-Meligy – Co-Founder, Muslims for Liberty
  • Tarek El-Messidi – Co-Founder, Fast-a-thon
  • Dr.Ismail Elshikh  – Imam, Muslim Association of Hawaii
  • Mohamed-Umer Esmail – Imam, Nueces Mosque
  • Umar Farooq – President, DePaul UMMA
  • Nancy O’Barr Frantz – Business Manager, Iftin Charter School
  • Jehan Hakim – Community Advocate, Asian Law Caucus
  • Iltefat Hamzavi – Co-Founder, Institute for Social Policy and Understanding
  • Asra Hamzavi – President, Hamzavi Psychiatry & Wellness Center
  • Noor Raheemullah Hasan – Executive Director, Muslim Women’s Alliance
  • Khalil Houri – Board Member, Masjid Al-Kareem
  • Nausheena Hussain – Executive Director, Reviving the Islamic Sisterhood for Empowerment
  • Abdulla Jaber – Religious Director, Al Farooq Masjid of Atlanta
  • Kathy Jamil – Board Chairwoman, The Islamic School League of America
  • Ameera Khan – President, Muslim Student Association – University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
  • Edina Lekovic – Public Affairs Consultant, Muslim Public Affairs Council
  • Abrar Malik – Imam, Masjid Alfalah
  • Saba Maroof – Psychiatrist, Islamic Association of Greater Detroit
  • Dalia Mogahed – Author, “Who Speaks for Islam? What a Billion Muslims Really Think”
  • Albert W. Pless Jr  – President , American Muslim Health Professionals
  • Saquib Rahim – Chief Medical Officer, iTriage
  • Nimrah Riaz  – Chair, MSA Lone Star Council
  • Fatima Sadaf Saied – President, Muslim Women’s Organization
  • Mohammed Saleem – National Board Member, EMERGE
  • Muhammad Sattaur – Executive Director, Imam Ghazali Institute
  • Christina Tasca – Executive Director, Muslim Community Network
  • Ibrahim Tawil – Team Lead, MAS Chicago
  • Yousef Turshani – Chief Medical Officer , UMMA Community Clinic
  • Onder Uluyol – President, Islamic Resource Group
  • Khurrum Wahid – National Chairperson, Emerge USA
  • Mohammed Samir Wahid – Founder, Islamic Institute of Atlanta
  • Suhaib Webb – Imam, CenterDC
  • Tara Turk-Zaafran, Co-Founder, Islamic Society of North America
  • Adeel J. Zeb – Vice President, National Association of College & University Chaplains

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