I don't know which is worse in Oklahoma: Islamophobia or ignorance of Islam altogether. Islamophobia is using crazy scare tactics to convince people that they should fear Islamic culture, race or people. The ignorance comes in when a person uses these same tactics without the knowledge of the thing they're scaring people with, but proceed to move forward with their tactics. Both are moved by foolishness " again ignorance, racism and bigotry " and both do not really want to know the truth.
Before the coming of Prophet Muhammad, the people of Arabia were barbaric, foolish and savage. They buried their daughters alive. They walked the streets naked. They robbed, killed and raped as an everyday activity. Then Prophet Muhammad offered the people a way of living that was more beneficial to them and more in the lines of Allah's (God's) will. The Holy Quran was revealed from Allah as the last of revelations. The Torah and the Gospel being the first and second respectively. This new revelation taught the people to worship and love Allah and to submit to him in peace.
The Quran is a guide for behavior, worship and ethics. After the revelation and the teachings from the Holy Prophet, the Arabian Peninsula became a people of worship, peace and very God conscious. The revelation of Islam guided people to the right way. Islam means to submit in peace to Allah. When Muslims meet, they say "As-Salamu alaykum," or "May the peace be with you, may Allah be with you." This is what Islam offers.
People also had the Hadiths " the sayings of the Prophet. He said things like "none of you truly believes until he wants for his brother what he wants for himself," "respect and love your parents" and "be merciful to others," as well as other sayings.
Shariah is 95 percent man-made and 5 percent revelation, according to the interpretation of scholars. Shariah teaches us to follow the law of the land in which we live. If a crime is committed, we follow the law of the land, not Shariah. America has its own laws. There is no threat of Shariah taking over America.
People think Shariah law means punishment. I debated state Rep. Rex Duncan, R-Sand Springs, in Tulsa last month and told him that's wrong. Out of the 2,000 pages of Shariah, only 25 pages are on punishment. Only due to extreme situations is Shariah implemented. Allah says in the Quran his mercy outweighs his wrath. He teaches us the same.
If opponents investigate Islam, they will see we have more in common than differences. They will see we are of the same nation. Education and communication are key; not racism, foolishness and blissful ignorance.
State Question 755 was a big joke put together by clowns with nothing else to do but put Oklahoma in a panic. This measure is an embarrassment to the Oklahoma people as well as the American way of life. It was a direct insult to citizens who live under a certain code of their religion. The authors of this foolishness, as well as those who voted for the bill, should be ashamed and embarrassed.
Mohammed is director of information for the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City and board member of the Islamic Council of Oklahoma.