MPAC Releases ‘Muslims and the Making of America’

Washington, DC : On February 6 th the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) announced the release of “Muslims and the Making of America,” a special report that brings to light the impact Muslims have had on America since the earliest days of slavery through today.
Released in conjunction with Black History Month, the paper demonstrates that Islam was on the minds of our nation’s founding fathers as they considered a variety of moral issues, and that Muslims contributed to the development of America at every stage.
DOWNLOAD: “Muslims and the Making of America: 1600s to Present” ( www.mpac.org )
“This paper is a welcome breakthrough in the conversation about America’s rich history with Islam and Muslims,” said Haris Tarin , Director of MPAC’s Washington, DC, office. “It provides a much-needed window into the American Muslim experience, starting before America existed as a nation.”
Among the historical highlights covered in “Muslims and the Making of America” are:

  • Early considerations for religious tolerance for Muslims dated back to colonial America, including, in one example, a plantation owner who provided a place of prayer for an enslaved African imam;
  • Key framers and advocates of the US Constitution and Bill of Rights specifically considered the rights of future Muslim citizens to worship freely according to their own conscience;
  • A legendary abolitionist senator — who also served as the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and directly influenced President Abraham Lincoln’s efforts to end slavery — was influenced by Islam’s “benignity” toward slaves, citing the Qur’anic injunctions against slavery as “words worthy of adoption in the legislation of Christian countries.”
MPAC is proud to present this report, which has been in the making for more than a year by author Precious Rasheeda Muhammad, and provides critical insights into the diverse populations that came together to build and shape our nation. 
Founded in 1988, MPAC is an American institution which informs and shapes public opinion and policy by serving as a trusted resource to decision makers in government, media and policy institutions. MPAC is also committed to developing leaders with the purpose of enhancing the political and civic participation of American Muslims.

 

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