Who is made unsafe so you can feel safe?

Like most people I suppose, I thought of Muslims as newcomers to the Americas. I thought of Muslims as people who came recently, the result of wars and conflict in the Middle East. Like most people, I suppose, I was wrong. And in Praying to the West Omar Mouallem writes about this history of Muslim presence in the so called Americas that goes all the way back to slavery. Islam was present in Africa, which means it was present within enslaved Africans and he notes that by some estimates about 1/3 of those who came across the Middle Passage were Muslim. Like everyone who isn’t Indigenous to this place, Muslim presence here is a mix of both deep roots and recent migration.

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