In a little-noticed story over the summer, six Canadian-Muslim organizations have taken out a newspaper advertisement declaring their opposition to Islamist extremists such as the Muslim Brotherhood and rejecting the Islamists’ tactic of using false accusations of "Islamophobia" to stifle dissent.
The full page advertisement appeared in the print version of Canada's National Post and can be seen below:
One of the endorsers, the Council of Muslims Facing Tomorrow, explains that its version of Islam differs from the Islamists — and the sharia law — that they base their beliefs on.
"MFT [Muslims Facing Tomorrow] distinguishes between Islam, as a monotheistic faith tradition, and Shari'a as a time-bound, humanly constructed, legal-political system in the name of Islam from the 9th to 10th century that is mostly at odds with the modern world," its website states.
The President of the Council of Muslims Facing Tomorrow, Raheel Raza, talked about her strong advocacy of separating mosque and state in an interview with the Clarion Project.
Raza is one of the stars of Clarion’s award-winning film Honor Diaries, which documents the struggle of women in Muslim-majority countries. The film's reach in the Arab world — with screenings in Tunisia, Pakistan, Egypt and Iraq — shows the untapped power of the women's rights movement in Muslim countries. The film’s Arabic-language Facebook page has over a half-million "likes."
The truly sad part of this story is that not a single media outlet covered the newspaper advertisement. The Muslims' decision to pay for the advertisement is more than stating a position—it's a way of telling the media, "We're here and we want to be heard."
The media should embrace the diversity of the Muslim communities in North America. They shouldn't continuously rely on quotes from the self-appointed Islamist spokespersons, especially when polls show they only represent a tiny minority of North American Muslims.
Ryan Mauro is ClarionProject.org’s national security analyst, a fellow with Clarion Project and an adjunct professor of homeland security. Mauro is frequently interviewed on top-tier television and radio. Read more, contact or arrange a speaking engagement.