by Dan Kersey
I recently attended an event at a local mosque on the topic of Islamophobia. Bear in mind the recent negative images of Islam in the news; the Paris and San Bernardino terror attacks, the crisis in Europe as that continent, already struggling to integrate large Muslim minorities, absorbs 1,000,000 mostly Muslim refugees, and all this to the backdrop of the ongoing atrocities of ISIS. Additionally, being that 2015 is headed into a presidential election year, you have presidential candidates vying to outdo each other in their denunciations of Islam. So when I learned of this event, I figured I would have to go; both in that I feel it is important reach out and bridge the gulf between myself and the “other” in my midst, but also just for the thrill; maybe produced by the vulnerability of hearing “their” side of the story and on “their” turf. What I heard, saw, and learned I feel is worth passing along, so here is my report.