Terror attack on Museum of Islamic Arts in Cairo

The assault on museums and libraries sadly has far too frequent echoes: from the destruction of the Iraqi national museum, from the Serbian assault on Sarajevo’s library, and from the Islamist attack on manuscript collections in Mali. This is a hatred of arts, of beauty, of knowledge, of our collective human wisdom.

2013: The top 14 Muslim news stories of the past year

2013 was a bloody, difficult, unraveling year for many Muslims around the world. May 2014 be a year that sees the discomforted comforted, the orphans cared for, the hungry fed, the naked clothed, the homeless provided with shelter. May there be a widening of the circle of compassion, may there be a real peace rooted in justice, and above all else, may all of us be participants in making it so.

The “Egyptian Jon Stewart” on the Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt, and Censorship

Bassem Youssef, “The Egyptian Jon Stewart”, has a column in which he takes to task the unfolding Egyptian Revolution/Coup for engaging in some of the same modalities of oppression and censorship that they have critiqued in the Muslim Brotherhood. Youssef’s note still marks the type of political maturity grounded in humanitarian outlook and self-critique that will eventually be part of what will deliver Egypt—and America—to the promised land of political equality.

The Racism of New York Times’ “Muslims are not ready for Democracy”

What is perhaps most frustrating about the NY Times’ “mental deficiency” language vis-a-vis Muslims and democracy is that this language is simply a continuation of a colonial apologia where Western countries colonizing and occupying, Muslim (and other) countries justified their lingering oppression by stating that these countries “were not ready to rule themselves”, “lacked the mental qualifications needed for self-governance”, etc. This colonial—which is to say, unjust and oppressive—worldview must be exposed and dismantled before we can embrace a more holistic and humanistic paradigm.