Wednesday, January 20, 2021   

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When the Quran spoke English
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The first Muslim member of Congress assumed office in January 2007. For his swearing-in ceremony, Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., chose to pledge on the Quran. The copy he used, specially loaned by the Library of Congress for the occasion, had once belonged to Thomas Jefferson.




Jefferson Was the First President Defamed for Mentioning Islam
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Love your neighbor as yourself, and your country more than yourself,” wrote Thomas Jefferson the year before his death. Who did he include among his neighbors in the blueprint for the nation he loved so much?




Salon.com: Our Founding Fathers included Islam
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[He] sais “neither Pagan nor Mahamedan [Muslim] nor Jew ought to be excluded from the civil rights of the Commonwealth because of his religion.”
 — Thomas Jefferson, quoting John Locke, 1776





Thomas Jefferson’s Iftar
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“Ramadan,” said President Obama at a White House iftar dinner in 2010, “is a reminder that Islam has always been a part of America. The first Muslim ambassador to the United States, from Tunisia, was hosted by President Jefferson, who arranged a sunset dinner for his guest because it was Ramadan — making it the first known iftar at the White House, more than 200 years ago.”




This Year In Islamophobia
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Experts wagered it came from the aimless fear and the anger people feel in times of economic crisis, exploited by certain politicians looking to give their party an advantage in the midterms and turned toward American Muslims.




Ted Widmer: The True History of the Koran in America
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Nine years later, we are still haunted by Sept. 11, and in some ways it’s getting worse. All summer, a shrill debate over whether to build a mosque near the Ground Zero site was fueled by pundits on the right, who drummed up a chorus of invective that made it impossible to focus on the modest facts of the case.




Obama Says Mosque Upholds Principle of Equal Treatment
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President Obama said on Saturday that in defending the right of Muslims to build a community center and mosque near Ground Zero he “was not commenting” on “the wisdom” of that particular project, but rather trying to uphold the broader principle that government should “treat everybody equally” regardless of religion.




Obama Strongly Backs Islam Center Near 9/11 Site
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After weeks of avoiding the high-profile battle over the center — his press secretary, Robert Gibbs, said last week that the president did not want to “get involved in local decision-making” — Mr. Obama stepped squarely into the thorny debate.