I have talked about 9-11 many times before. It changed all of our lives. I have friends that would be free right now if it was not for 9-11. There are many in Iraq, Afghanistan and other places who would be alive if not for 9-11. I had left Brooklyn, went to VA, and was then in Delray Beach, FL the day of 9-11 with a Moroccan sister. I called Mukhtar in St. Louis and he told me. I watched on the news then called Ismail Royer at the CAIR office in DC. Since that day Muslims have been monitored, harassed and targeted in America (myself included) and Muslims have joined the ranks of those hated by rednecks and bigots ( who may not have even known about Islam pre-911) and the “grand coalition of the oppressed” by liberals. Many militant-jihadis turned moderate ( or faked it) and basically the whole community has changed for the worse. It’s not that I am an Islamist or jihadi or nothing like that. It’s that I dont know what anyone stands for anymore. Everything seems to be about PR, image and trying to go mainstream. No one is standing on convictions. And I really believe these organizations don’t care about poor and working-class Muslims. Anyway, I’m pessimistic and I won’t go on. I will just say this about 9-11. If it was meant to help Muslims it didnt…..Terrorism. I read this blog Patheos. Some people writing about me. I had never heard of it before. Anyway I talked to one of the guys named Ahmed Younis and we seemed to clear it up and he seemed cool but all he knows is Cali. Ahmed and some goofy Egyptian comedian wrote an article about me getting many basic facts wrong. Others wrote much worse. That same crowd, upper-crust immigrant Muslims in the Western suburbs of St. Louis told the FBI I am a terrorist. Let’s look at the facts. Working for ACORN I registered and organized working-class voters in the 1990’s. I also volunteered in the Freeman Bosley mayoral campaign in 1997. Muslims were opposing me then for involvment in “kufar politics”. I supported Islamic liberation struggles: but never supported terrorism and was always taught that was wrong. When I travelled to the Caucuses it was only about helping people. When the brothers in Virginia were playing paintball I told them ” don’t do it…it just don’t look right….gonna get yourselves in trouble”. When Ismail was going to Kashmir I pleaded with him not to go. When a “sheikh” named Muneer Arafat came to St. Louis talking all that jihad talk I told people to study with Sheikh Muhammad Nur Abdullah. After 9-11 I gave an interfaith talk to the Ethical Society in St. Louis and later at the elite MICDS High School. When I started blogging I always spoke against terrorism and extremism. Moving to NYC I tried to get a Muslim-Jewish group going. Worked for the SEIU. Registered voters in Philly for the Kerry campaign. Was featured on Voice of America and many other media outlets. Debated and refuted al-Qadea blogger Sameer Khan and it was written about in the New York Times. Worked for Imam Mahdi Bray at MAS Freedom all we did was interfaith and community outreach along with Muslim advocacy. Along with Tariq Nelson was the first to blog about racism, classism and a lot of other issues in our community. Was the first to write an inside account of the damage of the Salafi Dawah. Had a contract put on my life by East Coast Salafis. Even this Ramadan was physically attacked at a masjid. This year on election day I worked for Mayor Slay. Today I am going to a Polish Catholic funeral and an interfaith event. Sunday I watched football with my redneck dad in Linclon County, MO. Any of these bougie-liberal Muslims talking about me being an isolationist ever been to a place like Linclon County? I played football ( and baseball, and wrestled and boxed) and am a huge fan. Half these guys wouldnt know a touchdown from an interception or a root beer from a cream soda. So no I am not really down with the agenda of Muslim elites ( the old Ikhwaan Mafia and Desi Uncles that run the older orgs or the upper-crust younger liberals advocating ideas that have been failing America for 45 years). That does not make me a terrorist though….I mach to my own drummer. In 2008 I voted for Obama, in 2012 I wrote in the name of a drone victim, in 2016 I may not vote for POTUS. Although Rand Paul does temp me I can never get dowm with their economics that harm the poor. I am against the coup in Egypt and kinda liked Morsi while I am also against any American involvement in Syria and believe the Asad government falling would be bad news. My own drummer you see. 9-11 changed a lot. People say one thing in public and another in private. Not me. I say what I believe. People moderate with age. You also see most people about game. Few in America really practice this deen. Definitely not me. I’m struggling like everyone else. Always have been. The idigenous and jamaats are straight shot out ( 70’s-90’s the golden era). I’m just honest and most indigenous caught up on the “sunnah” look, saying the right things and false-piety. While most immigrants trying to get position. I don’t care about either…both will and have lied on me. I’m more concerned with my daughters, boxing, driving my cab and shit going on in St. Louis at this point. The Earth is a masjid. I don’t need some manmade building and politics….Terrorist Aint Shit.. I spent a lot of time in Israel-Palestine. Loved it. Loved both sides. I did jummah at Masjid al-Aqsa and Shabaat with Orthodox Jews. Kicked it with Hamas and Settlers. Dated an Israeli girl. Kicked a bouncers ass at an Israeli night club and got hired to work for them. I rode the Egged Israeli buses and sheruts. When they were blown up Muslims would cheer. I said then and will say now that is some coward punk shit. You can’t look a man in the eye and kill him? Blowing up kids and students and all that. I remember pre-911 at places like Dar al Hijrah when the announcment of bombings got loud cheers. Not from me though. Not never. I want a free Palestine but not like that. Point is I was never what they said I was and when people say that it can cause stress and real problems so think before you speak or write…..anyway this from my phone, didnt pay my internet bill, so probably some typos and mispellings but I really don’t give a fuck. Peace. ( Put money on Mayweather and Garcia).
Last night I attended a meeting of about 20 local Muslim leaders with two special agents from the local FBI field office at Masjid Bilal (the old Islamic Center on the campus of St. Louis University).
I did not really want to attend the event but was encouraged to do so by a friend of mine. The meeting seemed like a bad idea to me from the beginning. The agents have been canvassing the local Muslim community informing us about some Somali kids in Minnesota who went to fight in the conflict in Somalia. At least one of them was apparently a suicide bomber.
When I was first told about this my response was “what the hell does this have to do with us in St. Louis?” These kids were from Minneapolis so talk to the people there. There is also the fact that the agents went to mosques that have almost no Somali attendees. So, are these kids in Minneapolis really the issue, or is this just another excuse to harass some Muslims?
I was under the impression this would be a big town hall event; but it ended up being just some local Muslim leaders meeting in a room with two agents. Those in attendance included Imam Muhammad Hasic ( a local Bosnian imam and power-broker), the imam of the new Nigerian mosque in North County, the Amir of the Northwest Islamic Center, Sheikh Minhaj from the Dar al Islam Masjid, Adil Imdad ( a local mover and shaker), brother Tim Kaminski, Sheikh Nur the Amir of the local Bantu Somalis, and others.
Before attending the event I thought out three basic questions/comments to hurl at the agents. The discussion was more informal and while I had a brother tape it the quality is not good. So, I will just list here my three basic points to the agents and there responses.
- Group Indictment.
There is no need to harass the entire community over the actions of a few. Bernard Madoff is Jewish, the majority of his victims are Jewish, and his crimes are intimately intertwined with the Jewish community. Yet, it is highly doubtful that synagogues with no connection to Madoff across the country are being canvassed.
Similarly, for every one Muslim in America remotely connected to terrorism or some facet of the Islamic movement the government deems to be illegal, there are dozens of Catholic priests who have a thing for raping little boys. Yet when the feds investigate the widespread pedophilia amongst American Catholics, they move very lightly.
Why is it that when it comes to the Muslim community they do not use the same good judgment?