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Your take: Is American Muslim alienation valid?
Mohammad Ali Elahi, the imam at the Islamic House of Wisdom in Dearborn Heights, Michigan.
March 28th, 2011
05:07 PM ET

Your take: Is American Muslim alienation valid?

Lots of provocative comments on our story about Muslims in one of the country's biggest and oldest Muslim enclaves feeling alienated in their own country. Many commenters are critical of American Muslims; many others sympathetic and supportive.

But the responses are all over the map and largely defy such easy categorization.

Here's a sampling:

Joe from Kalispell
The fact there is even a "Muslim Enclave" is scary. They already wanted to be separate to not be "polluted by American values." They are really pushing their First Amendment right because I am sure the Founding Fathers didn't mean to afford protection to a religion so opposed to our existence as is Islam.

JustAHuman
It is sad to see so much hate in this country and little education about other cultures and religions. In many instances we "Americans" bring destructions upon ourselves and we are blind to see why.

joe
These Muslims are safer in this country than anywhere else in the world. if they think they are unsafe here let them leave.

freeddoom
If you are really sick of them, then don't buy their oil, don't invade their countries, dont kill them, don't steal their land, don't prop up dictators to take their freedom away. I bet they have more reason to be sick of you buddy.

Maya
Islam literally means "submission" to God. Therefore, any human being that submits himself to God is considered to be following "Islam." what that means is, if you are a christian, who submits yourself to God, then you are in fact upholding Islam. You really do have to put the verse into context and understand the exact meanings. Here are a few verse for you to ponder upon:

"Surely those who believe, and those who are Jews, and the Christians, and the Sabians – whoever believes in God and the Last Day and does good, they shall have their reward from their Lord. And there will be no fear for them, nor shall they grieve" (2:62, 5:69, and many other verses).

Kat
Reality, funny because the terrorists never say they do in the name of Islam or to convert people to Islam or force Islam on America. They only complain about the hostile US policies and wars, and its support to Israeli atrocities, many supporters belong to religious  believers who want to see Armageddon and end of the world.

I know the media and politicians tell you that it's all about religion to mute any serious discussion of the root cause of terror.

Wirius
I am not a Muslim. I am APPALLED at the people who profess to faith in God, their ignorant accusations against the Muslim population in America. There are millions of Muslims in America. Some are poor, some are wealthy. Some are devout, some aren't so devout. Some are saints, some are sinners. Muslims are people, just like you and I. The good Muslim, which is the majority, seeks to better theirs, and others lives around them. Don't let the extremists paint your view of many good people. Don't let the fact that third world dictatorships use the Muslim religions blind you to how terrible Christianity was when it was tied to the king. In short, religious people should be showing support and care for the Muslims in our community.

Irritated
I am a Muslim WHITE AMERICAN who can trace family roots back to the 13 original colonies you idiot. This is my country. Accept it.

sassypants
Sick and evil! I will never trust them. I will forever remember Nic, Daniel Pearl, and the victims of 09.11 and countless others who have died at the hands of these monsters. I am angry at whoever created this mess by allowing this cult in the door. Immigration control – Yesterday!!

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Islam • Michigan

soundoff (822 Responses)
  1. david

    That's right. Anytime you have a religion that puts its religious leader above goverment...

    April 3, 2011 at 7:35 pm |
  2. WhatAWorld

    White Americans overwhelmingly have always feared anyone and anything different than what they are accustomed to. This issue is no different. Sure, it is convenient to generalize and lump ALL Muslims into one pot, those extremists who want nothing more than the worse for America and its people. But you have to remember that we also have American-born, corn-fed and raised citizens who have also performed terrorist acts against this country and others who have yet to do so but most certainly will. When I watched the CNN special and saw that a black man was heading up this hate fest against the Muslim center in Murfreesboro, I was both shocked and saddened. How quickly we forget that blacks probably were just as unwelcome in that town not so long ago (and there are probably still locals who don't want them there). How many black bodies lie lynched, undiscovered, in that very area right now? You better believe that we are in the last days and times. Everything we are experiencing right now, to include the rampant hate and intolerance, was foretold long ago. It is only a sign of our impending end.

    April 3, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
  3. Barry

    The real deal is this....deep down inside "fear of the unknown" is every individuals greatest fear. So when someone says, yeah I grew up with and have lived next door to Amid and his family all my life.....I know he could never be a terrorist. A true statement on that persons part, but their fear is....what if Amid does have some one in his family who knows and or is a terrorist. That is how the terrorist reigns terror.....they secretly hide behind other peoples innocents while at the same time throwing mud in the face of a religion that, for anyone who has done any studying pretty much runs the same line and is intertwined with Christianity. So with that being said...as long as terrorist exist so will alienation....right up until the end and....if terrorism were to end tomorrow.....there would be alienation against something else.....if nothing else racism, it's going anywhere either and will be here right up to the end.....you see Satan rules this world and he will always have something for us to use against one another......until the human race wakes up to see what is really going on.....the world will continue on its path to destruction....but before we totally self destruct I can guarantee you this, God already has a plan in place to keep us from doing so.

    April 3, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
  4. MIKE JONES

    IF I SEE IT THE WORLD SEES IT SO HYPOCRACY WILL NOT WORK, CONDEM ONE YOU HAVE TO CONDEM ALL. ALLOW ONE GROUP, THE OTHERS WILL CONTINUE ALSO.

    April 3, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
  5. MIKE JONES

    ONE MUSLIM KILL IN THE NAME OF ALLAH THEY CONDEM THE WHOLE GROUP. ONE KLAN OR SKINHEAD KILL IN THE THE RAGE OF HATE. THEY ONLY GET THE INDIVIDUAL ONLY IF HE'S CAUGHT. NEVER THE WHOUL GROUP. WHY IS IT THAT THE WHITE RACIST GROUPS CAN PRACTICE WAR AND HAVE WAR COMBAT. AND IF ANY OTHER GROUP DO IT ITS NOT ACCEPTED.

    April 3, 2011 at 1:56 pm |
  6. MIKE JONES

    IF YOU WANT THE MUSLIM EXTREMIST OUT, TAKE OUT THE KKK AND ALL OTHER EXTREMIST ALSO. IF YOU LET ONE GROUP PRACTICE THERE HATE LIKE THE KLAN ,SKINHEADS AND WHO EVER ELSE. LET THE MUSLIMS DO THE SAME. YOU CAN'T STOP ONE GROUP TO DO EVIL AND PREACH EVIL IF YOU GOING TO ALLOW THE OTHER TO CONTINUE ONLY BECAUSE THERE THE SAME COLOR AS YOU. I GUESS IF YOUR WHITE AND AKKK OR SKINHEAD ITS OK TO KILL AND NOT CONDEM THE WHOLE GROUP.

    April 3, 2011 at 1:49 pm |
  7. MIKE JONES

    THE EXTREMIST MUSLIMS OR LESS DANGEROUS THAN THE HATE THAT THE WHITE EXTREMIST GROUPS OR HERE IN AMERICA ALREADY. DON'T HATE ON THE MUSLIMS , WERE WAS ALL THESE PEOPLE AND MEDIA WHEN THEY ADVERTISED THE KKK MALISHIA GROUPS AND HATE CLUBS. THE KKK AND WHITE SUPREMIST GROUPS TEACH THERE KIDS TO HATE ALSO. THE ONLY DIFFERENCE IS ONE GROUP IS ARAB AND THE OTHER IS WHITE.
    SO LET THEME BE LIKE THEY OR JUST LIKE YOU LET THE KKK AND SKINHEADS BE LIKE THEY OR. THEY ALL HATE ONE FOR RELIGION THE OTHER FOR RACE. HATE IS HATE

    April 3, 2011 at 1:43 pm |
  8. MIKE JONES

    These muslims that or extremist to me or no worst than White Racist Kkk they hate and or evil extremist also. They killed murderd blacks and jews in the name of christians. In Alabama a white devil of the kkk blew up a black church on sunday morning 4 little girls got killed while in sunday school learning about Jesus. No different than them to me

    April 3, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
  9. Phil

    I'm an atheist, but I believe that when you start condemning and killing others because of their belief, you've gone too far.

    April 3, 2011 at 8:01 am |
  10. mo bennett

    the naysayers in o"brien's piece certainly appear to be infringing on the rights that they are supposedly trying to protect. their actions to date are drawing very close to the actions of the terrorists they claim are the cause for their lawsuits. no wonder america is in a state of decline.

    April 3, 2011 at 6:58 am |
  11. A

    people are forgetting what christians are and it depresses me God forgiving he gave his only son's life to save people God is about forgive right who are us to tell other people who or who not to worship. jesue didn't chase people that did not believe in him why not let then build if God forgive us why can't we for a group of people that don't do 911 . are you people that call your self christans forgetting about God and Jesue believes . sounds to like you are

    April 3, 2011 at 12:08 am |
  12. Dave Long

    Hats off to Soldad O'Brian for another brilliant study of American culture. Not all if it is very pretty. We can thank our forefathers for the First Amendment. I believe (and hope) that the majority of Americans still believe in and support the freedom of speech and the freedom of religion.

    April 2, 2011 at 11:28 pm |
  13. Love Souls Thrive

    If Allah created ONLY Heaven and Earth. Also, Allah created liquid (aqua), solid, gas, and particles of light (all these are matters) out of anti-matters and non-soul life energy (animals & plants) ONLY. Satanial archangel of Allah created fires, powers, perceptions of time in humans, freewill – Of course, Allah ONLY want to promote goodness and peace... Islam sprung up in 5th century after the book known as "fields of blood" to Christians appeared in 2nd and 3rd century... Even by reading and studying the book of fields of blood, humans can become of satanic – power hungry nature... Then, who started invade and fought early Muslims? Who started Crusades? Islam never favor to have permanent armies and fighting... we just defend... of course, we humans need to know the nature of satan and Hell and fires... There are 2 kinds of motivations for humans... the better one is motivated for good cause, acceptable one is still motivated not to get bad things happened. But, love strings by love souls is so tiny to see that it has the strongest attractions. Thank you,

    April 2, 2011 at 11:04 pm |
  14. Zach

    If you think Islam is just another faith, check out Sura 9:5, Sura 8:12, Sura 9:29 among many that abrogated all the peaceful verses. Then think about Moses' 10 commandments, Christ's teachings, Hinduism, Budism etc.

    April 2, 2011 at 10:49 pm |
  15. Gaylene Newton - Winnipeg, Canada

    Ahem, thet's remiss, pillars of the community preying on the young. ?? With the highest of their ordinance "dealing with" their actions, our minds are to be set at ease?? Of course not! We protect the innocent and must keep them out of our neighborhoods!! Who would not protect a child vilotated by one of these monsters. Oh wait, they want to build a Catholic church in my neighborhood...but wiat..they prey on children, don't you remember! Stop them!!

    Hmm, not all priests do as few are accused of. Then why do you think all Muslims/Islams are painted with the same brush? Wake up people, for he who casts the first stone.... think about it.

    April 2, 2011 at 10:49 pm |
  16. Love Souls Thrive

    I grew up as a Muslim boy in a nation in S. E. Asia. Upon arriving to U.S.A., what I had learned as a Muslim boy were discussed by Christian clergy and all Muslims were portrayed as terrorists by English News Media. Then, Sept 11 happened that had caused 10,000 people to die (maximum). Then, I lost faith in Islam and I joined Christianity. But, I believed that Islam was better for me than Christian. What I had learned as a Muslim boy was what I had actually practiced. When Christian clergy talked about these, I thought that Christians practiced these too. But, NOOO! In my opinion, I may have met with only those Christians who do talk ONLY, but, I felt that Christians can go no further than talk. No Action Talk Only. Now, I am re-practicing Islam. Of course, Islamic practice I had exposed in my native country did not involve much about power structures, hierarchical powers and such. Christianity (even for humans' souls) involves a lot of power structures. Allah is not power. Allah is of true love acts. We, Muslims, would not talk in public and news media about what we did for good cause because we just want to get recognized by Allah ONLY. Osama bin Laden was like another Hitler; both of them had turned their love for their people under oppression into negative results and negative responses. Of course, they both were wrong. But, no body seem to bother that White Caucasians were imposing themselves (white caucasians) self-destructive natures and such. 1 + 0 = 1 no matter how many zeros! If Allah is ONE, we, Muslims, regard ourselves as zeroes. Thereby, we have to go from thinking ourselves 1 to 0 (right to left). Thank you, If you want to know me, google or bing Love Souls Thrive wordpress blog. Thanks again.

    April 2, 2011 at 10:37 pm |
    • Selah

      Let's get down to basics and define who Allah is. A Hebrew word study of the Old Testament will show you that Allah is another name for Baal, the false god the Israelites worshipped. He was the god who commanded them to sacrifice their children in the fire. What about the Muslim " honor killings" currently being litigated in several states where fathers have murdered their daughters for dating or even being interested in non-Muslims? Where's the love?

      April 3, 2011 at 3:35 am |
    • Mairo

      Selah, what you have said is a complete lie. Stop spreading inccorrect information. Allah is simply the word for God in the Arabic language. In no way does the word signify a false idol!

      April 3, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  17. Yank

    One poster wrote that Islam is submission to God. That's fine, but there are many more wonderful good decent people in the world whose religion is based on belief in multiple Gods, Goddesses, no Gods or even Aliens. While I can't blame the poster for their unintentional slight against these other Religions of the word, that sort of ignorance is ironically why Muslims feel fear in this so-called enclave. We should think about making Religious studies a core part of American education whereby ALL Americans learn to respect the worlds diverse beliefs and place NO one belief higher than another. Shinto Polytheism is no better or worse then Christianity. Islam is no better or worse than Native American Faith. Hinduism is equal with Judaism.

    Until humans are able to get to the stage where we can respect ALL religious beliefs (not just those that submit to One God) we will continue to kill one another OVER differences in religious beliefs.

    April 2, 2011 at 9:59 pm |
    • Mairo

      Why is it a slight to say that Islam is submission to God? That is simply a description of the religion of Islam. It is not a slight to any other religion. Islam actually has a lot in common with Native American beliefs, the Straight Path in Islam is the same path that Jesus urged believers to follow. God is One. Islam in practice actually protects the right for anyone to practice the religion of their choice without fear of persecution. Exactly like what is protected in the US con-sti-tution.

      April 3, 2011 at 6:15 pm |
  18. john leddy

    as a gay american man and military veteran, i worry about the growing number of muslims in america. as believers in such a primitive ideology, they may use their votes to limit my freedoms.

    April 2, 2011 at 9:52 pm |
  19. Glenn

    Rights are not created by and cannot be denied by the whims of majorities. Those are not radicals, just normal, everyday Muslims. However, if they are to be radicalized by anything, it would be the open animosity of ignorant, Fox viewing, inbred hillibillies from the South, such as those in the show.

    April 2, 2011 at 8:54 pm |
    • Mairo

      Very good ponits, both Shane and Glenn

      April 3, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
  20. shane

    This is America and i only grow more ashamed as descendants of immigrants forget their history and turn on the newest generation of citizens from other countries and faiths. How can we expect peace as we foment hatred and paranoia. I am a member of no faith but fear extremists from christian and muslim groups equally. I don't think we have even begun to reap what we are currently sowing.

    April 2, 2011 at 8:47 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.