Professor, Imam Present ‘A History of Islam in America’

On July 18, Dr. Ihsan Bagby and Imam Qasim Khan will present on “A History of Islam in America” at the Minnesota Dawah Institute. The presentation, set to begin at 7 p.m., will feature Bagby, a professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Kentucky. Bagby has been a key figure in documenting the lives of Muslims in America; in 2000, Bagby conducted the first national survey of mosques in the United States. “A History of Islam in America” is sponsored by the Muslim Alliance in North America, a national network of mosques, Muslim organizations, and individuals working together to Read More …

Taking Heart: What Would You Do?

By Gail Anderson From a Taking Heart dinner, May 2008. What would you do if you saw a store clerk refusing to serve a Muslim customer? That was the question explored in a recent ABC news story. We will be using that video as our discussion starter at the next Taking Heart, at 6 p.m. on Wednesday July 9 at Masjid Ummat Muhammad, 315 East Lake Street, second floor. A free meal will be served. There were more than 30 people at our last Taking Heart event at Lake Harriet United Methodist Church. We had discussions about sacred texts and Read More …

Bright Spot in Charter-school Report: Tarek Academy

By Marcia Lynx Qualey, Engage Minnesota On Monday, Minnesota education officials released a report on our state’s charter schools, and not all the news was good. In particular, the achievement gap between white and non-white students has widened considerably. This certainly should give us pause. But test-score troubles didn’t just hit schools with primarily non-white or low-income students. Math was one area where Minnesota kids seemed to have the hardest time. According to education reformer Joe Nathan, math-passing rates declined by half from third to 11th grades. But there were some bright spots. The Star Tribune reported that—among schools with Read More …

Students Deserve Equal Religious Rights Under the Law

By Fedwa Wazwaz and Marcia Lynx Qualey, Engage Minnesota On April 9, we read Katherine Kersten’s column in the Star Tribune, and the e-mail exchange between Kersten and Asad Zaman, executive director of Tariq ibn Ziyad Academy (TIZA), and were compelled to respond. I (Fedwa) have an eight-year-old daughter. I visited TIZA and decided not to enroll my daughter, choosing instead Al Amal School in Fridley. The primary reason is that I was convinced TIZA is not an Islamic School and does not teach Islamic Education to kids. I pay from my own pocket to put my daughter in Al Read More …