Nihad_Awad

CAIR’s Nihad Awad encouraged Muslims to use their vote to end Islamophobia at the DNC in Philadelphia.

While much of the focus at the Democratic National Convention is naturally on nominee Hillary Clinton, another issue is being pressed at the event by Muslim leaders: Islamophobia and the threat it poses to American Muslims.

Addressing concerns over the recent rise in Islamophobia in the U.S., Nihad Awad of the Council on American-Islamic Relations spoke to Muslims attending the DNC, telling them, “You don’t have to go to Canada, just register and vote.”

Awad, along with other prominent members of the Muslim community, believe their faith is underrepresented in the political field, and are looking to change that state of affairs. They see the Republican Party, and in particular it’s now formal nominee Donald Trump, as posing a greater threat to the well-being of Muslims in America.

Keith Ellison, a Minnesotan Congressman, also spoke at the event, pointing out: “We never had a leader of a major party openly calling for religious hate against a particular community.” In addition to Mr. Trump’s remarks early in his election campaign calling for a “complete and total shutdown of Muslims entering the United States”, he gave an interview last week on 60 Minutes in which he suggested visitors to the U.S. from countries with a “history of terror” should be vetted.

Other prominent Republicans have followed suit, with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich proposing Muslims in America should be deported if they are found to support Sharia law. Barrack Obama spoke out against these comments, calling them “repugnant”, but it seems many people share Mr. Gingrich’s views — a study recently found over 70 different groups in the U.S. were contributing to the rise in Islamophobia in the country, making this an important issue that needs to be confronted.

However, it was only Muslims making any show of their faith at the DNC. While a large interfaith prayer area has been set up, only the Muslim area was seeing any considerable use.

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