By Imam Abdullah El-Amin
Barak Obama is the first Black person to make a serious run for the presidency
We all have obstacles placed before us from time to time. Sometimes they are small and can easily be knocked aside with minimal effort. Sometimes they are more challenging and require much more effort. But nevertheless, they can be knocked out.
Now back to Obama. We should do some serious reflecting on the presidential race this year. I’m not speaking of deciding who the best candidate is, or who looks best on TV or in front of a mirror. I’m speaking of the picture of our country. For the first time in United States history a person of African heritage has the possibility, and maybe the probability of becoming the President of the Nation and thus, the leader of the free world – this, in light of the fact that this is arguably the most racist country in the world, now that South Africa is “liberated.”
So you wonder, “what kind of Black man is this?’ What makes him different than Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton? These two guys knew, and everybody else knew, they were at best running for President of Black America. Sharpton and Jackson never thought they had a chance of winning the presidency. They were just posturing.
But now you have men and women of the majority power race willing to vote into national office a person who only 35 or 40 years ago couldn’t drink out of the same public water fountain or use the same bathrooms. Amazing… but what’s different now? Sure, we know there are some white people who would never vote for a Black person no matter what. Now we don’t know whether or not he will actually win in November. That remains to be seen. But for Barak Obama to have actually gotten the democratic nomination is an amazing feat in itself. But how did it happen?
I contend that Barak Obama focuses more on his, and our, humanity more that his ethnic heritage or the suppression thereof. If you have noticed, you would have witnessed that Barak Obama doesn’t talk about what’s been done to him; he talks about what he can do for us, to paraphrase the late John F. Kennedy.
Although Obama emphatically states he is not a member of the Islamic faith, the ideals expressed in this race are in line with the dictates of worshiping The One God and the universality of mankind. You can espouse the tenants of the Qur’an even though you are Buddhist, Christian, Jew, or some other. In fact sometimes some of these people look more like the religion than some who call themselves Muslim. Now if he can rise that high and not be a Muslim, imagine what Muslims (who are the best people on earth, pound for pound) living sura 49:13 can do. In it ALLAH says that although He has made us humans different, He has only done so that we may know each other. That is the only reason.
So it’s not about what you call yourself that counts – it’s how you live. The number one pillar of our faith states that no one is above the son of Adam except his Creator. And when the Son of Adam believes this, and acts on it, nothing or nobody can suppress him or belittle him.
So how can a country inhabited by racist Caucasians nominate an African-American man to seek the highest office? The simple answer is they are human beings too and when the son of Adam exerts him/herself, they recognize it and respect it.
The Muslim is the highest person in his surroundings simply because he makes wudu, prays five times a day, fasts in Ramadan, etc. If Obama did that, he would be better still.
Obama is just the start. The Muslim and Islam is the end.