CNN interviewed five American Muslims about this year’s electrifying (and some say terrifying) election for president. According to the cable news network, they “expressed anxiety, frustration, pain — but also hope.” Here are some snippets from the interview:
Talib Shareef (Imam, Masjid Muhammad Mosque in Washington, D.C.)
Imam Shareef is a retired Air Force officer who was recently appointed imam of the Masjid Muhammad Mosque (also called The Nation’s Mosque). He tells CNN that he sees no conflict between a Muslim identity and the role of serviceman. He spoke of Bernie Sanders visiting the mosque last February, and praised Sanders for his efforts to “speak out against religious bigotry.” On tackling extremism, the imam says the solution lies in community engagement, “That’s what Muslims can do: see themselves as a part. We can begin to stop this radicalization.”
Noor Wazwaz, Aspiring Producer, National Public Radio in Washington, D.C.
Ms. Wazwaz says that hearing the anti-Muslim rhetoric during the presidential campaign has impacted her greatly. “Does it make me feel like that I don’t belong here? Sometimes yes, because of controversial statements that are coming that say that Muslims don’t belong here,” she says. But she sees her high profile job as a radio producer as vital with challenging stereotypes. “We are your journalists, we are your police officers, we are your doctors. We have contributed to the society for a very long time.”
Dr. Tariq Shahab, Cardiologist in Falls Church, Virginia
For the first time, Dr. Shahab says, he is concerned about the outcome of a U.S. election. “This is the first time that it’s being felt that, yes, if a certain individual is elected then it would be difficult for the minorities to live in the US.”