Lena Felton is a multiplatform editor at The Lily.
Previously, she was a politics editorial fellow at the Atlantic.
Islam has been a religion that has been around for centuries, yet it seems that in modern times people act like it’s something that has just been born. Oftentimes non-Muslims ask questions, questions that are ignorant. However, it is not exactly humanity’s fault. Society has painted these negative images of the Muslim community, that’s on them. Yet it is up to you to stop choosing to be ignorant. I bet, and hope, you’re tired of asking these questions. Trust me Muslims are tired of hearing it. To get to know your Muslim neighbors better don’t say these things, and you just might be invited to the next Jummah
1. Do you speak Muslim?
I cannot stress enough how much this question hurts our little hurts. The definition of a Muslim is someone who follows and believes in the religion of Islam. You cannot speak Christian, Jewish, or Catholic, so it doesn’t make much sense for people to believe you can speak Muslim. There are Muslims everywhere, some speak Spanish, Turkish, Arabic, some just even English. So if you want to know what language us Muslims speak, please take into account that that are 7 continents, over 100 countries, and over 6,000 languages, every single Muslim does not speak the same language.
2. “Do you wear that when you sleep?”
This goes out to all the Hijabis. So many times Muslims women who wear the Hijab get asked questions like, “are you bald”, “do you shower with it on?” “Why do you wear that on your head?”. It gets tiring trust me. First things first, learn what the headpiece on our heads are called, the word has five letters and two syllables it is not that hard to learn, don’t be scared to say the word Hijab. Second please do some research on what the Hijab is, why, when, and how we wear it. Also, no one is forced to wear the hijab, everyone has their own-self will. Essentially the Hijab is an important part of Islam, instead of gutting your neighbor’s poor hijabi heart maybe just ask google.
3. Assuming every Arab is Muslim
Here are the basics, not every Muslim is Arab, and not all Arabs are Muslim. Islan did originate in what is now the Middle East, however it spread to many parts of the world. People like Mans Musa brought Islam to Africa. Today there are Latino Muslims, Asian Muslims, white-European Muslims. Muslims are everywhere. Islam is not attached to one race, it is attached to those who believe in it.
4. “You’re Muslim?”
Although Islam has been around for centuries people still have trouble identifying Muslims. This question, I’ve noticed, gets asked towards the girls who wear Hijab more. From my understanding, people seem to confuse Muslims with Nuns. Although both cover their heads, nuns have very distinct clothing, the traditional black dress, with the white-collar. Muslim women can just wear anything that is modest.
5. “You Can’t even drink water?”
During the holy month of Ramadan, Muslims around the world don’t eat or drink fromSunrise to Sundown. The part that confuses people the most is that Muslims can’t drink water. If I had a dollar for every time I was asked this I could pay my college funds in cash. In all seriousness, I understand that it is hard to understand not eating for 10+ hours straight. However yes the water is included, water is a drink, drinks are liquid. Which passes the test of being something to not drink during Ramadan
6. “Pork is sooooo good”
For anyone who doesn’t no Muslims are prohibited from eating pork as pigs are considered dirty. When people find this out their first reaction is usually “but ham is soo good”, yes Susan I’m sure it is. Telling Muslims pork is good is not very important information, what do you expect them to do with it? I am happy that you like pork so much but we won’t be eating it.