[Ayloush is executive director of CAIR, the Council on American Islamic Relations, Southern California.]

Q: How should people of faith respond to the growth in the number of people without adequate health-care coverage?

A: Spiraling medical costs and a growing uninsured population require that religious leaders join the health-care debate and offer a solution.

Faced with ever-rising costs, more and more companies are dropping their health insurance plans, depriving many families, children and the elderly of much-needed medical care. Today, an astounding 46 million Americans lack health insurance.

Islam teaches that God intends for us, human beings, to strive for our societies to set rights and obligations for all people, protect the public interest and promote justice and compassion.

Many of our laws are being drafted by interest groups and are increasingly devoid of ethical and moral values. They tend to serve the interests of some people and victimize others, usually the economically and politically weak.

“Verily, God enjoins the doing of justice and compassion to others.” (Quran, 16:90)

Every person deserves medical care because God has decreed that every life is sacred and every person has dignity.


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