o'stephanie

o'stephanie
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Oregon, USA
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December 01
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NOVEMBER 29, 2010 12:21PM

Oregon Muslims Gathered Last Night in Solidarity

Rate: 13 Flag

(AP Photo/Corvallis Gazette-Times, Jesse Skoubo) 

(AP Photo/Corvallis Gazette-Times, Jesse Skoubo)

Last night, I did what women have always done in time of sorrow and trouble. I brought a salad to the barbeque at the Salman al-Farsi Islamic Center in Corvallis. They ate every speck of it.

In the women's space, I was comforted by the women, greeting each other and me with kisses on each cheek. Children swirled around the women just like any Christian fellowship meeting.

They expressed to me their conviction that the arsonist could not be a neighbor but had to be someone from out-of-town because they had always felt so welcomed, having been here for some forty years. Only one woman expressed some fear but allowed that she had only recently moved here.

The one thing that I want everyone to know is that our own American Muslims are our firstline defense against terrorist acts. Apparently it was this angry young man's father who had tipped off the FBI that Mohamed Osman Mohamud had "radical ideas". What pain this man must be feeling today, and yet he acted as he did because he is an American Muslim and loves his country. 

"We left Somalia because of war, and we would like to live in peace as part of the American community," said Kayse Jama, executive director of a local organization founded after the 9/11 attacks to fight anti-Muslim sentiment. "We are Portlanders. We are Oregonians. We are Americans, and we would like to be treated that way. We are your co-workers, your neighbors."

When you know individuals personally as I do, it is impossible to hate an entire group for the acts of a few radicals. I urge everyone to make their aquaintence. When they have open houses, drop by and get to know them. When you hear someone express hatred for American Muslims, question what that hatred is based upon.

After all, we are all Americans. 

My picture Monday morning 

My posts related to this story:

No Fear in Corvallis Last Night

 

Someone Set Fire to The Islamic Center in my Town

 

Why Hate Speech is as Dangerous as Fire

 

Modified from my article on Newsvine

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Comments

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Thank you, skypixeo.

You are a gentle kittie.
Well written and the best message on earth.
You show what is important.
Excellent follow-up, thanks for this...
Thank you Steph, for your heart and compassion. You are a wonderful example of what is good in this country in the midst of all the craziness.
When an event in Corn Valley makes it to #2 on the hit parade of BBC world news, you should expect an outpouring of goodness coming in from all over the world. You've only just begun to see the outpouring of solidarity.
Amen! It's a shame how a couple of bigots who did this probably, taint all Amricans. It's just a damn shame!
So the FBI gets a call from this kids father 2 years ago - "My kid is listening to dangerous people" The FBI sets this kid up with a fake bomb - they dont shuttle him off to get help, they dont try to turn him into a double agent. They set him up with a fake bomb. But in order for it not to be considered entrapment, they must give him a non-illegal actionable choice. Which they say they did, except that conveniently, of all the tapes they have on this kid, that ones missing.
1) what would you do if it was your kid? Would you turn him in and ask for help?
2) Is this entrapment? Do they have evidence that will stand up in court?
3) When are we going to deal with those that teach and support world-wide wahabbism, Saudi Arabia? Oh, never mind this last question.....
Lefty,

I had no idea we were #2 on BBC. Did NOT want to make international news.
We are already seeing more and more. The churches and synagogues have come through.
I just came back from taking some flowers and added a picture of all of them at the end.

Tim4change,

What you write has a great deal to it. I have worked with at-risk youth and know what idiots these kids can be. Their brains are not fully developed until they are at least 24 or so. Unfortunately, it is the frontal lobes and faculties of longrange thinking and consequences.

I also think of this young man's father who it has been variously reported turned him in to the FBI. This is biblical in its implications-- Abraham and Isaac. As a parent, it seems unthinkable to have to do something like that. M Osman Mohamud recorded his farewell video chiding his parents from holding him back from jihad.

If we could understand how this young American man could be brought to this dark place, we would be in a better position to resolve these dangers. What might have brought him back from the edge? What took him so far on this path?

OSU students who knew him said he smoked and drank (as Arab students will do in the US) and "loved to laugh". What made him different?

Was it the FBI feeding him? Or would he have found an actual terrorist to feed him?

Tim, this requires some thought. Also, there are 8,000 Somalis in Portland, a land with no law or government for decades. How has that formed him as a naturalized native? The parents tend to be strict disciplinarians with their kids which puts them between a rock and a hard place. Finding your own place in the world is rough.
Amen. We are all Americans. There are too many people invested in making us forget that...
We should never forget that we are all Americans. Thanks for this post. Well said.
Blue in TX,
Thanks. The politics of division try to keep us from remembering who we are.

bikepsychobabble,
Thanks for your comment.