5 Things to do Post Inauguration
Executive Orders Got You Down?
Yes, we’re concerned too. However, we at MuslimARC feel emboldened by the massive actions happening across the country. People are giving testimony, and making visible the suffering that is often silenced in mass media.
Over the past three years, our team took part in countless conversations with people threatened by policies that this administration advocates. We have shared stories with Black, Latino, and Indigenous, hard working people who are being displaced through gentrification in cities like Oakland, Los Angeles, Brooklyn. We talk to families who can’t find affordable housing, quality education, health care, who are often harassed and profiled by police, and who fear for the safety of their families. Our members include children of families separated by mass incarceration and deportation. We build community with many who suffer from the daily stress of a society that doesn’t see them as equal.
We encourage our followers to transform that fear into righteous indignation and frustration into resolve towards personal and institutional transformation. This is an important moment in history. Muslim Americans have the opportunity and obligation to engage the struggle for the civil rights and live the prophetic tradition of liberation. In the 1960s, Black Muslims committed to the liberation movements that opened the doors for the migration of Muslims from Africa, Asia, and Europe. Today, our multiracial American ummah cannot be passive and now is the time for Muslims from all backgrounds to come together in holy resistance. We are the embodiment of an interconnected world where our actions have an impact beyond these borders. We know it may feel daunting and many may not know where to start. And in order to move us forward, our team has developed a five step plan that can help guide our path to the transformative. With these steps, we can be witnesses, active participants, in the struggle for liberation.
Sacred Resistance Check List
Now is the time for self reflection and purifying our intentions. We must search deep within ourselves and our institutions must also reflect on their mission and goals so that we may align ourselves with principled engagement.
O you who have believed, fear Allah. And let every soul look to what it has put forth for tomorrow – and fear Allah . Indeed, Allah is Acquainted with what you do (Qur’an 59:18).
- Consider how you you may have benefited from or have been oppressed by systemic racism, xenophobia, or Islamophobia. How may this new administration affect you, your family, and communities by which you belong.
- Decide what role you want to play in addressing inequality and how active you want to be.
- Assess your expertise or strengths that will benefit your community, organizations you might want to work with, and the movement as a whole.
- Take the MuslimARC Self-Assessment of Anti-Racism Behavior survey or another self inventory to consider areas where you might improve on.
- Use your imagination and envision what a just society would look like. Think about a world you want for yourself, children, family, community, and humanity.
Now is a time for us to lift the veils and understand the social, political, and economic realities that we are facing. One doesn’t need to have a Ph.D. to have deep understanding, but we must be willing to commit to learning and unlearning. Our Prophet (s.a.w) said, “The seeking of knowledge is obligatory for every Muslim.” (Al-Tirmidhi, Hadith 74) And this is true now more than ever as we need people who are equipped with the ability to understand and articulate to their network why we must oppose harmful policies.
Get your Political Education and understand who will benefit and who will be harmed.
- Familiarize yourself with Trump’s platform.
- Understand how people may be affected by it.
- Ascertain ways to affect social change.
- Learn the names of your federal, state, and local representatives
- Watch Documentaries such as The 13th and The Power of Nightmares
Read these suggested books (order them or ask for them through your library)
Attain a library card or order books online such as the following:
- Playbook for Progressives: 16 Qualities of the Successful Organizer by Eric Mann
- This Is an Uprising: How Nonviolent Revolt Is Shaping the Twenty-First Century by Mark Engler and Paul Engler
- Freedom Is a Constant Struggle: Ferguson, Palestine, and the Foundations of a Movement by Angela Y Davis, Frank Barat, Cornel West
- Check out the MuslimARC Essential Reads list
- Attain a library card or order books online such as the following:
We must support grassroots efforts that have been working hard to affect change, raise awareness, and create safe spaces for affected communities.
The believing men and believing women are allies of one another. They enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and establish prayer and give zakah and obey Allah and His Messenger. Those – Allah will have mercy upon them. Indeed, Allah is Exalted in Might and Wise (Qur’an 9:71).
There are many people who support our community with tireless effort and we must find ways to bolster their efforts as they face the greatest attacks.
- Join an organization as a volunteer and help them build capacity or develop best practices.
- Follow and amplify on social media (Facebook, Twitter)
- Sign up for mailing lists to stay abreast about local activities.
- Donate to organizations that do good work.
Support organizations that are within the spectrum of social change from self-help, education, advocacy, direct services, or organizing for change to mitigate the most adverse effects of this administration. Some social change organizations to consider include:
- Direct Services – Direct services often provide immediate relief and humanitarian aid to communities (i.e. ICNA Relief or UMMAH Clinic).
- Self-Help – Self help organization support the self sufficiency and sustainability by building economic and social infrastructure (i.e.Muslim Alliance of North America -MANA)
- Education- Education organizations seek to reduce bias and prejudice through cultural competence and diversity training. (i.e. Islamic Networks Group– ING or Muslim Speakers Bureau)
- Advocacy- Advocacy organizations aim to influence decisions within political, economic, and social systems and institutions (i.e. Council on American-Islamic Relations – CAIR or Muslim Advocates)
- Organizing – Community Organizing is the coordination of cooperative efforts and campaigning carried out by local residents to promote the interests of their community (i.e. Inner-city Muslim Action Network, MPower Change, MuslimARC or Muslims for Social Justice)
This list is not exhaustive, there are a lot of great organizations out there. Please email us for others we should include on our toolkit at firstname.lastname@example.org
As Muslim Americans, now is the time to show up for those who are disenfranchised. We need to be witnesses and be there to show others who are oppressed that we will defend them also. Now is the time to be out and present and not hide away in our little enclaves. We need to find our allies and be able to show the beauty of our principles, our cultures, and communities:
“If anyone calls others to follow right guidance, his reward will be equivalent to those who follow him (in righteousness) without their reward being diminished in any respect, and if anyone invites others to follow error, the sin will be equivalent to that of the people who follow him (in sinfulness) without their sins being diminished in any respect”.
- Discuss with your family, peers, and coworkers the impact of harmful policies.
- Attend lectures, forums, viewings
- Answer calls to Action, from signing petitions, emailing and calling your representatives.
- Show up at Town Hall and City Meetings
- Get Involved
- Get Your Black Muslim Psychology Conference ticket
Our resolve will see us through these challenging times. We must draw inspiration from the numerous Companions who remained by the Prophet’s (s.a.w.) side even through the greatest hardship. We must draw inspiration from our ancestors who survived incredible difficulties. We must be remain steadfast even when we are riddled with self doubt, when we are frustrated with our team mates, and even when we may not see immediate results. We must learn from our mistakes and shortcomings and keep trying until there are no more tries left.
Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Take up good deeds only as much as you are able, for the best deeds are those done regularly even if they are few.” Source: Sunan Ibn Mājah 4240
- Manage your time wisely and be realistic with your capacity. This may mean shifting your priorities and assessing the efficacy of your work styles.
- Dedicate a few hours each month for volunteering to one of the types of social change organizations
- Plan when and to what organizations you want to donate
- Build community with people who are doing this work, learn from them. Movements do not happen in isolation.
- Join local organization(s) and follow through with your commitments.
- Be Consistent in learning and involvement.
With the massive Women’s March in DC and sister protests in cities across the country, it is clear that there is a growing movement to resist the Trump administration. Clergy & Laity United for Economic Justice state, “ We will embody faithful resistance in the public square and open our congregations and communities to provide sanctuary for anyone targeted by state-sanctioned scapegoating, working as a matter of faith to ensure the dignity and human rights of all people.” PICO National Network, United We Dream and Church World Service called upon faith communities in America to take “a prophetic stance against President Trump’s promised persecution of immigrants, Muslims and people of color by providing Sanctuary in more than 800 congregations.” Environmental degradation and climate change affects indigenous people, the criminal justice system disproportionately affects Blacks, Latinos, and Native Americans, undocumented people are exploited and their families torn apart, Muslims are religiously profiled and threatened with policies that violate their civil liberties. Although the women’s March initially started with White women, and soon women of color, including Linda Sarsour, Tamika Mallory, and Carmen Perez were asked to take the lead in developing an inclusive platform. The Muslim Women Alliance reflected the diversity of Muslim Americans, while giving homage to the significant role of Black Muslim leaders, Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X, by featuring their daughters who are powerful figures within their own right.
This list is by no means exhaustive. But it aims to get you on a steady path of joining a movement that is greater than ourselves. For some people who are just trying to survive, your survival is necessary and is part of the movement. We aim to build communities of compassion where we can take care of each other. Transformative organizing is deeply spiritual work in this world. It involves improving our relationship with our Creator, to transform ourselves, our relationships with each other, and institutions.
You can download the full pamphlet here (http://bit.ly/ARC5things)