Guest Blog

The following was written by my dear wife Iman Gholizadeh. She is so right on with this response to recent comments by Hamza Yusuf.

Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim…

INJECTING CONTROVERSY WHEN AND WHERE THERE IS NONE: THE HAMZA YUSUF COMMENTS…

“Not only do we need social justice, but we need social mercy” Hamza Yusuf

Those who know me, know that I am NOT an apologist or someone who holds back punches on any controversial issue. In my personal opinion, which happens to align with most of the laws of this land, people really do have a legal right to say what they want, as long as it is not taken, or interpreted as a threat, or an act that conflicts with other laws or rights conveyed in the Constitution. Therefore, on this particular issue, I won’t either. I have no problem with what Hamza Yusuf said. However, I do have a ‘problem’ with how his words – in some cases – have been maliciously misconstrued. Somehow, there is an unfounded expectation that, politicians, leaders, and others alike, are automatically expected to, in the words of my husband, ‘blow warm air and roses up people’s asses’ and when people come along who don’t agree publicly, when in private their words are sometimes worse, then phooey on them. Double standards are no protection at all from the truth. The truth is that:
1. The Black Lives Matter Movement has a right to exist, especially in the capacity of warriors against injustice against people of color; specifically unarmed Black men.
2. It has a right to advocate as vigorously, and strongly as possible for the rights of people of color, no matter what position in life held, for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, without being killed unjustly in the process.
3. Not all police who shoot unarmed Black men and other people of color are racists. As Hamza Yusuf pointed out: Unarmed, and armed White people are shot unjustly as well. It is just not reported as much, and some of the police officers who shoot to kill, and shoot first, before asking questions, are also people of color.
4. Many officers are simply in the wrong profession. The bottom line is that they are too afraid of death and dying to perform their duties as loyal servants, protectors, and law enforcers of the community. Shooting blindly in the dark at the sound of Boo!!! Is not someone willing and/or able to stay the course with justice in mind, or keeping their guns in their holsters.
5. Not all Trump supporters are racists either, and anyone who holds stubbornly to this untruth, is trying to absolve some unsavory truth in their own closet, by blaming others for their own failures, and/or inability to face the truth.
6. The Sheikhs comment about Trump being a Servant of God or something like that… we are all servants of God, but it is what and how we serve in God’s name, or God’s actions, is where we should be striving. Sometimes Allah uses creation in whatever ways necessary, to promote good, even if the ‘catalyst’ is ‘bad’. After hardship comes ease is a common saying; what about after a test, comes failure or success? Trump may be our test, or a test for the world. We can either pass or fail it, but it is up to us to use our personal and/or collective knowledge, wisdom, and common sense to pass it. Dwelling on the reasons why we are given the test, rather than why the test even exists, will cause us to fail it. Get busy folks instead of injecting controversy where there is none.
7. Finally, WE ALL need to jump out of our ‘victim’ mode, and into our survival and rebuild mode, or else we won’t survive this transition. Whether Hamza Yusuf is right or wrong is not up to the other 1.7 billion of us who have 1.7 billion opinions. Khair, we got this, if only we choose to use basic common sense – Aql’ or THINK.

Sheikh Hamza Yusuf – who I do not follow anyway (I rarely follow all these self-made or self-named Scholars) also spoke about the racism prevalent throughout the Muslim community. The Muslim who talks ish about how ‘White, Christian and/or Jewish, etc are Islamophobes, are guilty of the same crime, in as many cases as the ones we accuse. It is the same as the Pot telling the Kettle that it’s Black, when it’s Black too. Just check your own heart/house before you start checking in on someone else’s. You will find that there is more dirt in your corners and other places not readily visible, than in your neighbor’s house. Hopefully EVERYONE will discover – yet again – that it’s time to clean house, and not wait until the next election cycle! I’m trying, and so should you…

Just tryin’ to keep it real.