American Muslim Athletes Need Ambassador of Faith
Here at Athlebrities, we love to share with our readers all the contributions athletes and sports bring to society. We understand and agree that the main purpose of today is to remember and pay tribute to the innocent victims in the towers, the flight crews and passengers on all four planes that day, the workers at the Pentagon, every single First Responder on scene and our Soldiers like Arizona’s Pat Tillman, who chose to do something after the fact. One thing that has changed post 9/11 that rarely gets addressed is how reluctant Muslim-American athletes are to act as the bridge between Muslims and non – Muslims.
American-Muslim athletes are more prevalent in U.S. sports than ever. Very few of them are willing to work as a mediator between the Muslim and non-Muslim world. These athletes have the ability to reach and change people in a way that truly is an art. It’s a form of self- expression through competition and perseverance to do the best, and be the best, that can unite people from all cuts of the cloth. When athletes break down these walls, it allows knowledge to reach a segment of people who for unknown reasons choose to be deeply alienated from mainstream politics. NFL’s Hamza Abdullah, a safety for the Cleveland Browns, says his teammates always ask him about being Muslim but no schools, churches, or other institutions have invited him to speak.
Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson, Kareem Abdul- Jabbar and Hakeem Olajuwon were ambassadors of the faith during their time. The next generation of ambassadors to call for a better understanding between the Islamic and Western World are rarely heard from. In the past, politics and athletes have never been a good mix. Athletes today, who try to bridge this gap, end up spending most of their time in interviews being persecuted or desperately back peddling to avoid being divisive. In times of war, the government tends to grow in power and prestige as freedoms shrink. The most endangered rights end up being those of ethnic and religious minorities who are targeted, not due to individual suspicion, but due to stereotypes.
Since not all Muslims are terrorist, Athlebrities wanted to highlight a few Muslim-American’s who also happen to be athletes. Hamza Abdul’s younger brother Husain Abdullah, plays safety on the Minnesota Viking’s, also where Ahmad Rashād played. Retired Rasheed Wallace, and Shaquile O’Neal were both part of the NBA legacy known as the Boston Celtics. Comedy Central and staying up late have been made better by Dave Chapelle. Mos Def, Nas, Lupe Fiasco and Snoop Dogg, all of who played key roles in the rap and hip-hop industry. David Bowie’s stunning wife Iman, turned the modeling world upside down when she entered the scene in the 70’s. CNN anchor, Fareed Zakaria, is also head of Newsweek International and a contributing writer for The Wall Street Journal, Time and the New York Times. He was also named one of the 100 leading public intellectuals in the world by Foreign Policy and Prospect Magazines.
Without a doubt, this day is dedicated to every single person who lost their life on September 11, 2001 and to their families who have managed to live in this world and keep their faith.
“Faith is trust, confidence and reliance in what we have reason to believe is true” – J.P. Moreland
As always, thanks for reading~