The Emerging American Muslim Civic Identity

By EBOO PATEL

The recent spate of high-profile news on Muslim-Americans can be summed up easily: horror and terror. The high-profile actions of the few are overshadowing a trend that is capturing the many: the emergence of an American Muslim civic identity, which is to say, how Islam inspires its followers to be better citizens in America.

Necla Kelek: “Immigrants Set up More Borders”

Necla Kelek, the Turkish-born sociologist and widely read author, argued in a debate that the German “multi-kulti” model is misapplied or has failed, insofar as it allows self-inflicted social isolation and discrimination – such as Muslim fathers keeping their daughters away from standard swimming lessons in school -, and that carving out new “religiously justified liberties” is not compatible with a democractic system. Her debating partner, Bishop Wolfgang Huber, pointed to the failure of the German education system as an additional cause of cultural intolerance. They agreed that successful integration presupposes some sort of shared social, cultural and civic identity.