[Lack of] Pride

When do we demonstrate to the rest of the world that the solutions to the massacres we face in our own country are relative to the effort we make in fundamentally restructuring the law?

As June approached we started to celebrate Pride month and…Ramadan. How ironic that in these 30 days we are simultaneously glorifying both the Islamic faith and hope as we are celebrating the rights of LGBTQ individuals. How sad that on June 11th, 2016, we had to witness one of the worst massacres to date.

In the 30 days of Ramadan, sacrifice is demonstrated by the virtue of fasting and providing wealth or “zakat” to those who are less fortunate. In the 30 days of Ramadan, a world of peace and harmony are stressed as God’s name is pronounced loudly through the minarets at the hours of dawn to bring in the day and at the hours of dusk to call upon the breaking of the fast. Upon the meeting of prayer, the Mosque stresses the importance of focusing on oneself and providing for others what you are able to provide for yourself: peace, wealth, food, harmony, etc.

In my Muslim community, judgment is frowned upon as we try to earn the blessings of Allah, the forgiveness of Allah, and the opportunity to wake again tomorrow and begin anew. What isn’t stressed in many Islamist communities is just that.

Omar Mateen does not represent me. Or my mother. Or my father. Or any Muslim. Mateen represents the fundamental issues we see domestically. There is nothing that I, or you, or even the most intelligent of FBI agents could have foreseen regarding the attack. Instead, we could have stopped him from buying those guns where he both shot 50 individuals who had nothing to do with his atrocity and held others captive as they begged for their life.

This man targeted this community for a reason and that conversation must be had. Though that conversation encompasses three very important things: gun laws, acceptance, and self-radicalization. And as a Muslim, I want to have have this conversation. Right now.

That man was capable of obtaining an assault rifle of which no questions were asked during the purchase because of the gun rights that exist today. For years we have been trying to have a discussion of sensible gun laws.

When will be time to talk about these exchanges? When will the time come for us to form new relationships between communities that may have never exchanged words once before? When can we finally show respect and save the innocent lives that are continuously and repeatedly gone too soon.

Tonight, and for many nights, this event will be politicized. This is the point that all conservatives point to ISIL and Islamic radicalism, and all liberals turn to sensible gun laws. The matter of the fact is that both issues are necessary to have but if we choose to undermine the fundamnetal value in gun reform legislation once more until the next massacre occurs we should be ashamed of ourselves.

From one Muslim heart to all the lives lost last night, I stand with you. Love does and will always conquer hate. Call your local official, develop community relationships and strengthen your neighbors to stand hand in hand in the times when we find ourselves in the most vulnerable of situations.

I am sorry to the LGBTQ community that you have been attacked once more but I assure you that we will stand strongly and proudly. This is the beginning of a new relationship I hope you want to have with those of us in the Muslim community who want to overturn the damages and fight our way through a better tomorrow.