The day started with sessions and panel discussions regarding the law surrounding things that affect Muslims today like what the First Amendment will look like in “Trump’s America,” what it’s like to be a Muslim student today, and how the media relates to the Muslim community. Getting to watch these discussions and see members of the Oklahoma Muslim community ask questions, learn, and engage, I realized that the day was all about exactly what I want for everyone in this country: a chance to learn the political system and to determine how to best make it work in the favor and interest of those we love and care about.
As the day moved on, I realized that working at CAIR has given me a perspective and a platform that I never would have had before. It has changed my thinking and my view on my responsibility as an advocate. I see now that fear, hate, and disagreement stem from not understanding each other. I found that any uncertainty I had of the Islamic community was because I had never associated with them myself and realized that they are me. The people I met during the learning sessions, the prayer at the capitol, and the time after prayer which was spent writing letters to legislators were people with aspirations, goals, and plans for themselves, their state, and their country. They were Americans who wanted to see a world where all of us get the chance to be who we are and share that in a glorious way.
My hope is that MDAC is a shining light to the changing culture, not only in this state, but in this country. I hope that, as we move into a very contentious time in our country, the spirit that I saw drive this event is shared and spread throughout the country. People, white, black, green, purple, male, female, LGBTQ+, young, old, tall, short, etc. should feel a responsibility and a desire to come together in love and in solidarity to further the values of our Constitution and allow our country to be about what I saw on March 2nd: love, solidarity, brother- and sisterhood, and, most important of all, positive change for the future.