Racism in The Muslim Community: Are We Really One?

The Muslim community is a global community of diversity, variety and color. We are taught to accept every Muslim (and non-Muslim) with complete disregard to their color, nationality or ethnicity. Yet somehow black Muslims (and Muslims of color in general) experience racism from our brothers and sisters in Islam. Every attempt to tackle these issues has been swept underneath the rug with the phrase “One Ummah brother, we accept no racism in Islam”. How can you explain the feeling of superiority towards black and brown people? Why are we still finding excuses on anti-blackness in the Muslim community? When we are not willing to accept the problematics beforehand and try and solve these blatant issues proactively.

When non-Muslims are racist towards black Muslims, it’s quite predictable and somehow easier to deal with. We are taught to ignore these racist and forgive them for their ignorance. But when your own “brothers and sisters” reject you and your blackness, it’s quite sad and problematic. Where do you go to? Where do you belong? Are the days of Arab supremacy towards black people still not passed? Has there ever been a unified Muslim community?

Black Muslims

The most well-known black Muslim (and one of the Companions of the Prophet, peace be upon him) has to be Bilal Ibn Rabaah. He was an Abyssinian slave who lived in Mecca and embraced Islam in its very beginning. Almost every Muslim knows about this black slave who was freed by the help of the other companions and became the first caller to the congressional prayers. There is no racism in Islam. An Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab and a non-Arab has no superiority over an Arab. Those were the exact words of the prophet Mohammed.

So where did it go wrong? Why do so many Muslims speak highly of Bilal yet dehumanize black Muslims of this time? Why are intercultural marriages looked down upon and are mixed babies praised? Muslims are not perfect but aren’t we taught that brother- and sisterhood is the key to a strong and unified Muslim community?

Female black Muslims

These women face multiple bigots from different groups of people. They face racism from Muslims, non-Muslims, they get mistreated and raped in the Middle-East by their Arab bosses. No woman should have to go through these situations, but the fact they’re being violated by their Muslim “brothers” is sickening. Where has our Muslim pride gone? Have we stopped caring for our women?

What is the solution?

This is the tip of the iceberg, I’ve barely exposed the problems black Muslims have to deal with on a daily basis. I certainly hope I’ve brought awareness to the readers and shed light to these shameful issues.

How can you help you ask? Here are a few guidelines to stop anti-blackness in the Muslim community:

  1. There is no racism in Islam, please act that way
  2. Accept our blackness and individuality, don’t try to deny us
  3. Reply to our Salam’s, free hassanaat yo

This has been a PSA. Please share this on your Facebook wall so your friends (who might be racist towards black people) will learn to deal with their bigotry and accept the many shades of this community.

Written by Mansour Jamal Ibrahim

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Mansour Jamal Ibrahim is a 22 years old and studies to become a business engineer. His main interests are history, languages, economics and modern technologies.