Muslim chaplain claims discrimination on United flight

Muslim chaplain claims discrimination on United flight
By Ray Sanchez, CNN
Updated 1258 GMT (1958 HKT) May 31, 2015
Tahera Ahmad

Source: CNN
Muslim woman claims discrimination on United flight 02:05
Story highlights
Tahera Ahmad says she was left in tears after being discriminated against
Ahmad says fight attendant denied her an unopened can, saying the can possibly could be used it as weapon
(CNN)A simple request for an unopened can of Diet Coke on a United Airlines flight left Tahera Ahmad in tears.

A Muslim chaplain and director of interfaith engagement at Northwestern University, Ahmad, 31, was traveling Friday from Chicago to Washington for a conference promoting dialogue between Israeli and Palestinian youth. She was wearing a headscarf, or hijab.

For hygienic reasons, she asked for an unopened can of soda, she said. The flight attendant told her that she could not give her one but then handed an unopened can of beer to a man seated nearby. Ahmad questioned the flight attendant.

“We are unauthorized to give unopened cans to people because they may use it as a weapon on the plane,” she recalled the flight attendant telling her.
When Ahmad told the flight attendant she was being discriminated against, the attendant abruptly opened the beer can.

“It’s so you don’t use it as a weapon,” Ahmad said she was told.

Shocked, Ahmad asked other passengers if they had seen what happened.

A man sitting across the aisle turned to her and yelled, “You Muslim, you need to shut the f— up,” she said.


The man leaned over, looked her in the eyes and said: “Yes, you know you would use it as a weapon. So shut the f— up,” according to Ahmad.

“I felt the hate in his voice and his raging eyes,” Ahmad wrote on Facebook while the plane was still in flight. “I can’t help but cry … because I thought people would defend me and say something. Some people just shook their heads in dismay.”

After her Facebook post, people took to social media in support of Ahmad using the #unitedfortahera hashtag. Some pledged to boycott United.

Suhaib Webb, a prominent Muslim American imam, tweeted, “I’m asking all of you to let @united know that you are disgusted with this bigotry.” He also tweeted a photo of a can of Diet Coke over #unitedfortahera.
In a statement, United spokesman Charles Hobart said the airline “strongly supports diversity and inclusion.”

“We and our partners do not discriminate against our employees or customers,” the statement said. “We are reaching out directly to Ms. Ahmad to get a better understanding of what occurred during the flight.”

“We are also discussing the matter that Ms. Ahmad describes with Shuttle America, our regional partner that operated the flight. We look forward to speaking with Ms. Ahmad and hope to have the opportunity to welcome her back.”

Ahmad, who has Premier frequent-flier status with United, said Saturday that she had not heard from the airline.

“I’m not doing this to go after United Airlines. This is about bigotry and racism and our country is going through a very difficult time right now. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and so many others worked so hard …” Ahmad said, breaking into tears.

“They strove so hard so that Americans would not mistreat each other on the basis of the color of their skin or religious or ethnic background but I guess we’re still on that journey.”

The flight attendant as well as the pilot later apologized, she said.

“She said she’s working on her rude behavior and that the man (sitting across the aisle) should not have said anything,” Ahmad recalled.

Ahmad was recognized at the White House last year “as a leading Muslim female in the United States” during Women’s History Month, according to Northwestern University. She had previously attended a Ramadan dinner hosted by President Barack Obama.

In 2013, Ahmad sparked outrage among Islamic conservatives when she became the first woman to recite the Quran at the Islamic Society of North America convention in Washington, the nation’s largest Muslim gathering, according to Northwestern.

Ahmad was born in India and grew up in Morton Grove, Illinois. She said she has been spat on and had her hijab ripped off in Islamophobic encounters after the September 11, 2001 terror attacks.

“This time I was being treated as a threat to everyone around me 30,000 feet above the ground and being told that I could use a can of Diet Coke as a weapon,” she said. “And no one said anything.”

The incident comes amid growing hostility toward Muslims living in the United States.

On Friday, protesters at a “Freedom of Speech” rally outside a Arizona mosque were met by counterprotesters. The two groups lined opposite sides of the street in front of the Islamic Community Center of Phoenix. They yelled at each other as a line of police officers kept them apart, CNN affiliate KNXV reported.

The Islamic center is the mosque once attended by Elton Simpson and Nadir Soofi, who drove from Arizona to a Dallas suburb to shoot up a Prophet Mohammed cartoon contest there. Both were killed by police early this month. Many Muslims consider demeaning depictions of Mohammed to be blasphemous and banned by Islamic law.

In Washington, activist and conservative blogger Pamela Geller of New York wanted to place ads showing cartoons of Mohammed in the capital’s transit system. She hoped to display the winning cartoon from her group’s contest in Texas — the one where Simpson and Soofi were killed by police. The Washington Metro board voted to stop showing issue-oriented ads throughout its system.

Events such as this have some Muslims scared, said Imraan Siddiqi with the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

“Recently, the mosques here in Phoenix actually received threatening letters — very specific threats, saying that we are going to massacre your congregations,” he said.

In a national survey by the Pew Research Center in 2013, 42% of respondents said Islam was more likely than other religions to encourage violence among its believers. In addition, Muslim Americans are seen as facing more discrimination than other groups, including gays and lesbians, Hispanics, African Americans and women.

According to the survey, 45% of the respondents said Muslim Americans face “a lot” of discrimination, and 28% said Muslims are subject to some discrimination.

CNN’s Carma Hassan, Sara Sidner, Ed Payne contributed to this story.


Racism played a role in Elliot Rodger’s Santa Barbara murder spree: experts

Misogyny and entitlement were factors, but Rodger’s manifesto reveals his rage was also directed at people of color, Michael Kimmel and Cliff Leek write.


Read more:

The horrific mass murder in Santa Barbara has pundits and armchair diagnosticians scrambling for an explanation.

This time, we’ve seen misogyny and men’s sense of entitlement added to the usual suspects of guns and mental illness. We’d suggest another variable be added to the lethal equation: race.

We are not saying that the fact that Elliot Rodger identified himself as white is the single cause of his gruesome rampage. Not at all.

But if we want to understand how this happened, and how to prevent it in the future, we are going to have to confront race. Let’s look at the facts. In the last 20 years, all but one of the school shootings were committed by a white man.

Rodger’s enemies were not only the beautiful white girls who he felt constantly turned him down for dates and rejected him sexually. His rage was also toward all the men of color he felt those white girls chose over him.

In his manifesto he writes: “How could an inferior, ugly black boy be able to get a white girl and not me? I am beautiful, and I am half white myself. I am descended from British aristocracy. He is descended from slaves. I deserve it more.”

Here’s another way Rodger’s race was involved. His parents were so worried that they called the police. The police went to his house and questioned him. They thought that he was basically fine, posed no threat, and they left him alone.

Now imagine if he’d been black and expressed the threatening rage that is present in his many YouTube videos. The police would have knocked and he’d have been in handcuffs instantly.

But Elliot Rodger, the son of a British father and Asian mother, identified himself as white. He “looked normal.”

The commonality among these shooters is, overwhelmingly, race and gender. This is a voice of white male aggrieved entitlement. Our willingness to assign blame to individuals, at the expense of any attention to the underlying trends in these repeated cases of white male violence, allows this violence to continue.

Michael Kimmel and Cliff Leek are in the sociology department at Stony Brook University.

Read more:

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The Anti Islam French.. Islamophobia!!!!

City Lights, France-Italy Border (NASA, Intern...

City Lights, France-Italy Border (NASA, International Space Station Science, 04/28/10) (Photo credit: NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center)


A French woman sent her son, 3, to school with a T-shirt which said: “Jihad, Born September 11, I am a bomb”.


Bouchra Bagour and her brother Zeyad were found guilty of ignoring a criminal act on Friday. The T-shirt was a supposed recall of the 9/11 attack on New York in 2001. The attack killed about 3,000 people. Zeyad was responsible for buying the T-shirt.

The young boy, Jihad, went to nursery school in September 2012 wearing that T-shirt. The act prompted legal action from a local official as the act was responsible for upsetting the school staff. Ms Bagour was fined $2,700 (2,000 euro) along with a suspended jail sentence for one year, whereas the sentence was double for Mr Zeyad.


The incident is remarkable for establishing France’s stance against Islamic terrorism. An earlier survey finds that 74 per cent French people do not believe that Islam is compatible with the social structure of France, according to reports of The Inquisitr.

There has been a steady rise in the number of anti-Muslim insults and attacks in France, reports Reuters. The country has seen a part of media and politicians who present Islam as a problematic aspect in the French society. French groups that are fighting for Muslim rights in the country feel the same.

It has been reported that there is a rise in hostility when there is some news related to Islam. Last year, an Islamist was responsible for murdering 7 people, while a politician who blamed Muslim children for stealing snacks of other children in the class, according to Committee against Islamophobia in France.

In August, a couple of skinheads allegedly attacked and assaulted a Muslim teenager in Trappes because she was wearing a veil. Later, the girl attempted to commit suicide by jumping from the fourth floor of her apartment. She was attacked with a sharp object that ripped her off the veil. The skinheads hit her and shouted anti-Islamic insults before running away in a car.

Some time back, Marine Le Pen, the far-right leader, compared Muslims devotees praying on the streets with the Nazis who occupied France during the war.

All these incidents show a growing anti-Islamic attitude among the French. Even though the government has not been lenient to illegal acts, the anti-Islamic propensity in the country may be perturbing for the secular image of the French society.


Arrest over mosque blast tattoo seen at Birmingham EDL rally

Picture of a tattoo at the EDL rally on 20 July The man was pictured at an EDL rally in Birmingham

A man photographed at an English Defence League rally with a tattoo on his ribs of a mosque being blown up has been arrested on suspicion of stirring up racial hatred.

The 39-year-old man from South Shields, South Tyneside, was arrested following the protest in Birmingham on 20 July.

A man was pictured at the rally with a tattoo of a mosque with the word “boom!” on it.

Officers said the arrested man had since been released on bail.

He was arrested by Northumbria Police on Friday on behalf of West Midlands Police.

The force made a total of 20 arrests following the rally – and counter-protest – off Birmingham’s Broad Street earlier this month.

Police said up to 2,000 people gathered at two locations in the city centre.


Thats not Islam

English: A green version of http://commons.wik...

English: A green version of (Photo credit: Wikipedia)



What Islam is Not!



This is one of my very old write-ups.


I was curious, so I did a google search, to find if this is listed.


To my sadness, I found lots of links that present Islam in an abusive language. Allah Kareem!


Today, amid a growingly aggressive and Islamophobic media, there is need to present Islam as it is. 


Thought of re-posting this with some modifications for the benefit of my readers.


* Not an invention of Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم but the Glorious Revelation of Almighty Allah.

* Not a ‘religion’ among other religions but a Unique Way of Life, the Clear Code of Conduct from the Maker to the made.

* Not an emotional belief cut off from the realities of life but the Divine Guidance that is life in itself.

* Not a tradition of a bygone era to be labeled as out-dated but the Natural Way that continues to be post-modern in every age.

* Not a chilly creed to be locked in lifeless souls but a Revolutionary Creed that breathes life into souls making them brave & courageous, dignified & respectful.

* Not designed to make people extremists or terrorists but perfectly fine-tuned to establish peace, justice and brotherhood among mankind.

* Not a call to become ascetic, to shun the world but a call to use the world, to explore the universe, to live in the thunder and rhythm of life.

* Not a bunch of beliefs that deny women of their rights but the World’s Pioneer that honored women by liberating them and giving them their human rights.

* Not addressed to a sect, a nation or a race but addressed to all sects, all nations, to entire humanity.

* Not meant for giving temporary solutions but meant for providing lasting solutions.

* Not just designed to provide regional and national solutions but designed and destined to provide solutions at the global level as well.

* Not directed to solve only a part of the problem but directed to solve the totality of the problem.

* Not against any community or religion but Against All Kinds of Oppressors and violations.

* Not interested in changing man’s outer look but interested in transforming man’s inner self.

* Not a ‘private affair’ between God & man, nor an isolation from the society but a system that is powered to prevail in the society over all kinds of falsehood.

* Not leading its followers to the narrowness of mosques but an Inspiration to spread, far & wide, into the vastness of the globe extending the wings of its healing message to a spiritually-challenged humanity.

* Not in its nature to show mirages but the Divine Light that brings forth man from the depths of darkness to the glowing Light of Truth.

* Not just an alternative to ‘consider’ but the Only Way Out, the Only Hope of mankind.

Jazakallaahu Khayra for reading this post.


Note”” the respev\ctive brother is correct. The kuffar have so much hate tpoward Islam in theirs hearts that they bite of the tips of their fingers.

The hate thei have in theri hearts toward the Haqq is worse than the act they portay against Islam openly.

That’s exactly how my family , and modernijst muslims,  feels and thinks about me after my conversion , practising my religion in accordance and struggle for Him Ta’ala, leaving my country of birth.