Wednesday, February 09, 2011
Social media sites helped organize the protests in Egypt, but mosques have served many functions—from becoming makeshift hospitals to turning out large crowds of protesters each Friday. Fawaz Gerges, Professor of Middle Eastern Politics and International Relations at the London School of Economics, describes the many roles that mosques have played during the protests across the region, from Egypt to Yemen to Jordan.
Tuesday, February 08, 2011
It’s been fifteen days since the protests in Egypt began and even longer since voices of dissent erupted in Tunisia. Across the Arab world, there have been unrelenting calls for democratic reform. However, some claim that Islam and democracy are too incompatible to function together. Can an Islamic state embrace democracy?
Friday, February 04, 2011
Copts are native Egyptian Christians who make up about 10 percent of the Egyptian population. Their history in the country is deep, and as a religious minority, Copts have experienced discrimination and sometimes persecution under Mubarak. However, amidst the current unrest, Copts fear that an unstable government might give way for to powers even more unkind to Christians.
Monday, January 31, 2011
As popular uprisings spread through the Middle East, challenging autocratic regimes and upending old social orders, The Takeaway speaks with three Arab Americans about the upheaval and its meaning for their friends and family.
Monday, January 17, 2011
Tunisia's army clashed with armed gangs in Tunisia's capital on Sunday, two days after a popular uprising forced long-time dictator, President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, to flee the country. Popular support for Tunisians’ freedom is echoing across the Arab world. Anthony Shadid, a foreign correspondent for The New York Times, has reported from most countries in the Middle East over his fifteen year career. He says that the Arab world is facing its most dangerous and yawning divide between ruler and ruled.
Thursday, December 30, 2010
By Annmarie Fertoli : Associate Producer at WNYC
Thousands of people will be descending on Times Square for New Year's Eve, and one group hopes it will be an opportunity to spread a message of peace. The Muslims for Peace Campaign, sponsored by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, is a nationwide campaign. It was launched following the failed Times Square bomb plot in May.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
By Annmarie Fertoli : Associate Producer at WNYC
There's a new message in Times Square. It's a scrolling, 15-second graphic that reads: 'Muslims for Love, Loyalty and Peace.' It also features pictures of a dove, an American flag and a peace sign. And it's in rotation on an electronic billboard on 42nd Street, between 7th and 8th avenues, from six o'clock in the morning to midnight now through January 17.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Earlier this month, seventy percent of voters in Oklahoma said yes to a controversial amendment to the state's constitution, which bans the use of Sharia law in Oklahoma's courts. On Monday, a U.S. District Judge extended a ban on the Sharia amendment. In a state that has only very few Muslims – between 15,000 and 30,000 – why did so many Oklahomans feel that Sharia law was a threat?
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Today marks the third and most important day of the Hajj, an annual Islamic pilgrimage that has drawn as many as three million Muslims to Mecca, Saudi Arabia. The four-day trip is arduous, packed with rituals and prayers. Most pilgrims begin planning for the trip up to six months in advance and set aside around $2,000 to make the journey. Some are encouraged to get in good physical shape, build their immune system, prepare a will, and go through counseling so they are mentally prepared.
Monday, November 15, 2010
Islam is in many ways an essentially green religion, with foremost ethical principles stressing the importance of protecting the Earth and living in harmony with nature. But the Hajj, which officially began yesterday, has in recent years been attracting negative attention for its environmentally unfriendly effects. What does it mean when one of Islam's holiest events leads to environmental damage?
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Former president George W. Bush was on the Today Show with Matt Lauer, promoting his new book, Decision Points, and he was pushed to take a stand on Park 51, the Islamic cultural center and mosque near Ground Zero. As you may recall, at the peak of the controversy this summer, a number of supporters of Park 51 called on him to speak up, in hopes that he would voice support for the project and perhaps chide the most virulently anti-Islamic speakers.
He didn't then, and he refused to today, saying he didn't want to have his words on the issue -- or any other issue -- constantly compared to those of President Obama. Lauer tried to elicit some response, any response on the issue, but didn't get very far.
LAUER: Well, without saying whether they should build the community center or not, are you disappointed by the increase in anti-Muslim rhetoric in this country that we’ve seen recently?
BUSH: I think most Americans welcome freedom of religion and honor religions. I truly do. And the problem with the arena today is a few loud voices can dominate the discussion and I don’t intend to be one of the voices in the discussion.
See this video clip of the interview, from Think Progress.
The full interview is also worth watching, if only to see Kanye West apologize for calling Bush a racist, once upon a time. I think we need to impose an immediate moratorium on Kanye West apologies.
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
As a part of his 10-day tour in Asia, President Barack Obama delivered a very personal speech at the University of Indonesia Wednesday morning. Echoing some of themes he raised in his famous speech in Cairo in 2009, Obama spoke about the need for mutual respect among Muslims and the importance of a joint effort to combat extremism. Indonesia is home to the largest population of Muslims in the world, and Muslims in Southeast Asia tend to practice a more moderate form of Islam than those farther west. Did President Obama navigate those differences in his speech?
Tuesday, November 09, 2010
President Obama is poised to give his highest profile address to the Islamic world since his speech in Cairo a year ago. On Tuesday night, the president will speak in Jakarta, Indonesia, home to the world's most populist Muslim nation.
The president will speak before an estimated six thousand people at the University of Indonesia, where he is expected to hold up the country as a model for the values of democracy and diversity.
We're asking: if you're Muslim, what do you want to hear from President Obama tonight?
Thursday, October 28, 2010
As a kid, my parents didn't have an issue with my going out on Halloween and trick-or-treating. They didn't even hassle us much about bringing home too much candy. Their main concern was probably the same one my sisters and I had: what if we bit into an apple with a razor blade into it?? That was the fear much of America seemed to have in my day -- as if kids of our generation actually had an iota of interest in healthy apples when presented with so many other, more decadent options.
Friday, October 22, 2010
By Femi Oke : News host and Reporter for The Takeaway
"Three Faiths: Judaism, Christianity, Islam" opens on Friday at the New York Public Library with some of the library’s most rare and beautiful spiritual texts.
Friday, September 24, 2010
In 2009, workplace discrimination against Muslims rose 20 percent to a record 803 claims, according to federal data cited in the New York Times.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
By Julia Furlan : WNYC Culture Producer
Saturday marks the ninth anniversary of 9/11/01. In New York, the day is always loaded, especially in the face of the continuing controversy around the Islamic cultural center proposed for near Ground Zero, and the fact that this year, the Islamic holiday Eid al-Fitr falls on 9/11.
Friday, September 10, 2010
Pastor Terry Jones announced last night that he cancelled his plans to hold a Quran-burning in Gainesville, Fla. Instead, he will fly to New York to meet with Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, who is proposing to build an Islamic Cultural Center and mosque near ground zero.
Yesterday we spoke with another evangelical Christian minister from Gainesville — Dan Johnson, minister at Trinity United Methodist Church in Lower Manhattan — who was opposed to the burning. He said, "I think this country is more eager now than ever to hear moderate voices, and they're tired of... being taken hostage by people on the fringes so much.”