The New Jersey Spotlight story on Zahid Quraishi used the term “Muslim American” to describe the New Jersey magistrate judge named to the Federal bench. Born in New York of Pakistani parents, he is the first ethnic South Asian to be named to a federal court. But to call him “Muslim American?”
Are Jews called “Jewish Americans” or Christians “Christian Americans?” Religious prejudice unfortunately runs deep, especially when it is combined with political prejudice. This was reflected in the first question asked by Sen. Dick Durbin: “What do you know about Sharia law?” This reflects the same kind of ignorance displayed against John F. Kennedy in 1960 when he was asked would he be loyal to the Constitution or the pope.
We all have the blood and perhaps the consciousness of some ethnic group coursing through us, but the word “American” is one not of ethnicity but of allegiance to an ideal of a just society that believes in and supports equality for all
Prayer for the Day
O God, Source of life, Creator of Peace,
Help us, your children, in this confusing time
And grant us the ability to stretch across boundaries
Whether political, religious, or national.
Give us the courage to confront fear and hatred
And to continue to search for justice, peace, and truth
In the name of him who offers us your promise of peace,
Even Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.
Thoughts for the Day
Laws alone cannot secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.
Albert Einstein, scientist (1879-1955)
We need to stop thinking that some Americans are the real Americans, the deserving, the talented, the most patriotic and hardworking, while other can be dismissed as less deserving of the American dream.
Nancy Isenberg, writer
Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity, passing over the transgressions of people?
God does not retain anger forever, because God delights in showing clemency.
God will again have compassion upon us treading our inequities underfoot.
You will cast all our sins ito the depths of the sea.
Micah 7: 18-19