We Must Project The True Image Of Al-Islam: Part 6
Imam W. Deen Muhammad
(Editor's Note: The following is excerpted from the Muslim convention address Imam Muhammad delivered July 20, 1936 at Cobo Hall in Detroit: In'sha Allah, Muslim Journal will print the entire address. This is the sixth installment.)
When I was a young boy, Christians feared Al-Islam. They not only feared it, they expressed it. I had a young Christian girlfriend whom I invited to go to the temple with me; she told me, "I have to first ask my pastor." So I told her, okay, do that. When I saw her again, I asked her: "Did you ask your pastor if you could go to the temple with me?" She said, 'yes, and he said that the Muslims are not a real religion;' that 'Muslims were heathens.' I said, no, that's wrong. We believe in God. I also told her what we believed in. I said, go back and tell him that.
So she went back and told him. When she came back, I asked her if her pastor said she could go to the temple. She said, `If you come first to my church, I can go to your temple.' So I went with her to her church. And later she came with me to the temple. It didn't happen all at once; it took her a long time to come, but she finally came.
I remember also walking on the church grounds, as a boy, and someone called out to me, "Hey Mohammed!" They used to call me Mohammed, especially those who didn't know me very well. One of my brothers was very popular as a youngster; they called him Mohammed, and when they learned that he had a brother under him, they called him "Big Mo," and they called me "Little Mo."
So, this child hollered out, 'Hey Mohammed!' The Holy Mother said, 'who is Mohammed?' I said, 'that's me.' She said, 'get off these grounds! No Mohammeds are allowed on here.'
I don't think that would happen today, but it happened when I was a boy. They tried to make the public think that the mission of Prophet Muhammed, peace be upon him, was the mission of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, or the mission of tent dwellers who are weak in their morals and have harems of ten or twenty women. That was the image they projected when I was a boy.
Hollywood did it; you could find it in magazines, comic strips, and in newspapers. That was the image that was given to our religion when I was a boy. You must understand that today the American public is a much more informed and educated public than it was in the days when I was a boy. Now they can't come out like that.
The war they make against Muslims is the same war they make against everybody else who is a threat to their plan. The war against the spirit that God intended man to have. It's war to dominate his soul, spirit and mind. The very human potential in man is a target of their weapons.
Nature may have left our faith to the survival of the fittest. There is no sad thing about that. But the West claiming to compliment, assist or lead nature for the greater life of man, pretends to be leading the situation to the survival of the fittest, while trying its best to make as many unfit as possible.
How can a nation claim to be civilized and moral while at the same time doing all it possibly can to make as many of its poor weak citizens the victims of immorality, dope and hooligan life? The people in the cities don't have to tolerate the level of crime that they tolerate. If you've been halfway awake as a human being you'd know that the same media is the culprit. They sell the public a fad and then when it runs its course and another fad is needed the same media condemns that fad as an evil because they have another fad they want to promote.