Here's What The First Ramadan Of Trump's America Has Been Like
"I still sometimes get distracted during my night prayers by the thought of someone entering my mosque with the intent to harm. I wish this were an irrational fear."
For Muslims around the world, Ramadan is known as a time of peace, solidarity, and unity. However, with the rise of hate crimes and violent incidents toward those in the Islamic community, this year has been especially trying for those who practice the faith.
Over the past month, there have been multiple reports of disturbing and violent acts, including a man who was charged with driving into a crowd of worshippers as they were leaving a mosque in London on June 19.
And in Fairfax, Virginia, a 17-year-old girl named Nabra was killed as she was walking to her mosque after having pre-sunrise breakfast, also known as Suhoor, with her friends.
However, although the holy month this year has been marked with tragedy, it has also been marked with resilience.
Recently we asked Muslims to tell us how they felt practicing Ramadan in the current political climate. This is what they told us:
"Ramadan for me has always been an opportunity for deep, dedicated introspection. This lens is achieved through extreme focus, dedicating time to prayer and community. However, this year there is a palpable difference, the introduction of a president with such overwhelming power and such absolute disdain and ignorance of my faith has forced me to think beyond only my personal growth in Islam.
Gone are the days of just standing in prayer asking for protection from God from all things evil, as they are replaced with specific detailed prayers to protect my immigrant parents adorning the head scarf and long beard, living in the middle of Kentucky. But rather than succumb to fear and lack of hope, my faith is further fortified in this Trump era as I meet remarkably talented and pious people actively fighting for not only Islam in America but for any underserved and marginalized communities. In a sense, the fear and distraught that Trump has initially created only further motivation and has strengthed all my prayers and actions during this holy month of Ramadan."
(Submissions have been excerpted and lightly edited for clarity.)