Center for Multicultural Affairs to host "fighting Islamophobia"

The Center for Multicultural Affairs will hold “Fighting Islamophobia,” from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday in room 310B in the Student Center.

Jim Tran, organizer of the event, said students can learn about the basics of Islam and its “involvement in the world today.”

“This event is important because there are people that do not know enough about the Islamic faith, so in turn they make assumptions [about] it,” he said.

CMA reached out to Eastern Michigan University’s Muslim Student Association to help pick a lecturer.

Senior Immad Ahasari, MSA president, said they picked Mustapha El-Turk, a religious leader at the Iona Masjid in Iona, Mich., because of his credibility.

“The main point of what we really want is a productive discussion,” he said. “But in order for that to happen, [we need] to clarify some misconceptions. You need to [give] a background.”

El-Turk serves on the board of nine religious and humanitarian groups, including the Interfaith Center for Racial Justice and the Imams Council of the Muslim Community Council. He gives lectures around the country about Islam and gives sermons on Fridays at the Iona Masjid.

Following a 30-minute lecture, audience members can ask El-Turk questions about Islam.

MSA secretary, Dilann Yasin, said Islamophobia is a problem in “America in general because it’s really starting to grow.”

“We have a very diverse community here at Eastern,” she said. “I think it’s important for everyone to learn about everyone.”

MSA Vice President and EMU alumnus Ahmed Abuzoor said the event will be a good way to “erase any biases people have.”

“I think this would be a really great way to open up a lot of minds that have been closed this past decade about Islam because Islam is a religion of peace,”he said.

Yasin said the event will help to put a face to the religion.

“Yes, it’s important to come to the events,” she said. “But it’s also important to meet Muslims at those events and see who these people are and what they’re really like.”

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