I’m an American Muslim. My mom’s family has been in the U.S. since the 1800s and my father since the 1950s. When people tell me to go back to my country, I smile and continue on my way. In my heart, I tell them that it’s a short trip from here to here.
We all came from somewhere, and I hope that as this country matures, it will see that its ethnic, racial and religious pluralism is its strength.
I walk tall for who I am: an American, a Muslim…a Scott-Irish Arab. Only in this great country can we have such a colorful tapestry of people.
I hope that my contribution to change comes every time I walk outside wearing my hijab, headscarf, bringing to life the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious practice. I hope that people will see me, in years to come, just as they see others like Barak Obama: as a contributor to society worthy of respect.