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  • Zack Shaheen

Go Somewhere Else? ? What?

By Faddy Shaheen

A repetitive, hurtful statement that must be stopped is one I continue to hear from time to time: "If you're not happy with the decision of the administration, just go somewhere else!" This is an irresponsible suggestion and fails to take into account the sudden decisions that are often made without proper explanation or address to the public. It disrespects those who have been impacted by the decisions, and we must work to stop this kind of thinking. We should instead strive to create an environment in which all voices are heard and respected so that everyone can take part in decision-making.

This hurtful and irresponsible comment and attitude is not coming from administrators of retail shops or sports arenas - it is coming from Imams and some Mosque administrators. In fact, most in the retail industry do whatever it takes to satisfy an unsatisfied customer. Many times, responsible managers/administrators will give in to the customer's needs even if they are at fault, to maintain their company's reputation and keep the customer coming back to the store. Unfortunately, this is not happening in the houses of Allah by not accommodating the needs of those who have grievances.

It is understood that many professionals such as doctors, lawyers, and other experts are volunteering to administer these holy places with their supposably utmost best efforts. However, this does not mean they should treat the mosque and its community with a brush-off attitude or show any form of disregard towards them. I urge these professionals to show their Muslim values in the house of Allah and with the community as much as they display loyalty/obedience towards their pockets and employer.

In conclusion, we all make mistakes and should be forgiving of one another; however, it is very important to address harmful attitudes and comments as they can be destructive and toxic. As Muslims, it is our duty to serve Allah by serving humanity, especially those who wish to carry a title in the Mosque and community of leadership. Additionally, it is important to remember that everyone is entitled to their own opinions and beliefs, but they should be respected and not judged in an unjust manner. Through tolerance, understanding, transparency, and acceptance of one another, we can move forward together as a strong Muslim/American community.

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