Sharia Week - Action Plan against Anti-Sharia Rallies
On Saturday, June 10 2017 – Brigitte Gabriele’s ACT for America is organizing 23 Anti-Sharia rallies across America[i] (Link) . What are we going to do about it? I am pleased to offer what we have done in the past events like this, and our action plan.
We have a choice to exhaust our vocabulary by throwing epithets like “right wingers, Islamophobes, Neocons, enemies of Islam…..” or follow the non-violent path laid out by Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
Mother Teresa once reflected, “If you want to make peace with your enemies go talk with them.” It is as simple as that and it has greater chances of working out than cursing them. Non-Violence works!
Pastor Jones wanted to burn 2998 copies of Quran – we stepped in and pulled the entire county to work with us – We levied no condemnation against Pastor Jones but acknowledged his right to free speech. It is one of the successful stories of Muslims engagements with fellow Americans to bring a positive change. Funds permitting, and encouraged by the Department of State, we are considering making a documentary in resolving conflicts, respecting freedom of speech and honoring what is sacred to people. It will be another feather in Muslims cap. Full story at: http://quranburningpastorterryjones.blogspot.com/
Pastor Robert Jeffress desecrated Islam, Prophet and Quran and called, “Quran is a false book written by a false prophet “creating a mess in Dallas, Texas. My approach was, “Pastor Jeffress, I am not blaming you for what you said, but I am asking you to check the veracity of the source of information you have about Quran and Islam. You probably have read the deliberately mistranslated Quran, I am pleased to offer a good translation and we can discuss it right here in your church. We owe the truth to our congregations. We responded kindly and it ended up in a Quran Conference that successfully changed the minds of fellow Americans towards Islam. This special site has full of videos, stories and events – www.Quraanconference.com
We also dealt with 9/11 Ground Zero Mosque controversy; I was the sole defender in its first week against Pamela Geller and Sean Hannity. If Imam Feisal had entered the scene earlier the situation would have been different. Much of which is chronicled in this special purpose blog – http://groundzeromosque.blogspot.com/
Peter King Hearings and other issues are chronicled in full blogs dedicated to the topics.
In October 2015 armed protests were planned in front of 15 mosques. Muslim organizations did not want to deal with it, I challenged them and they accepted to keep the mosques open and offer water and snacks to the protestors. This was an opportunity for Muslims to present themselves as to who they were – a hospitable people and not what Fox News portrays them to be. Thanks to Dahlia Mogahed for seconding the proposal. We wrote a press release and published in 80 newspapers – the protestors backed off.
Now, I want to make a similar effort and it will take employing a lot of time, resources and funding in the next few days.
Countering Anti-Sharia demonstrations.
Let’s handle this situation in the most civil manner while acknowledging and honoring free speech by ACT for America group.
A series of Op-eds will appear in the next few days informing fellow Americans about the non-existent public Sharia in America, and the unproductive nature of Anti-Sharia demonstrations.
It will be a full blown education week about Sharia. I urge Muslims to spend their time on writing positive articles rather than pulling other Muslims down.
We will hold symposiums on Sharia in the coming months to address the concerns of fellow Americans.
I will personally urge Ms. Gabriele to consider withdrawing this gratuitous act and join us in a civilized conversation in a symposium on Sharia.
I hope to appeal to common sense of the people on National TV – Urging Muslims to show their hospitality, supply water bottles to the protestors and let them know that we respect their right to protest. We have to win hearts and minds and let them see we are good Americans, and not what they have heard about us on Fox News.
We owe it to fellow Americans to allay their fears about Sharia. Our goal at the Center for Pluralism is to create an environment where no American feels apprehensive or fearful of a fellow American.
Let’s stay focused on peace and prosperity and not on conflicts and confusion.