It’s not the first time you’ve been a victim of a hate crime, nor is it the last. It’s 8:30 on a winter evening, and you’re closing up your store. The entrance door is locked, half the lights are off, and you’re mopping at the far end of the room when three men barge in the exit door as though they mean to rob you. Two of the men have their hooded backs to you. One of them you can see. He’s over six feet tall, with short reddish blonde hair and a goatee. You observe this in the moment before he stands and hurls a glass bottle directly at you. You duck. It slams into the wall and explodes into flames. All around you, you hear the sound of glass exploding. The store fills with smoke in seconds. You can’t tell if the men are still there and if they’re waiting for you, but you have to get out. You race through your burning store and out to the road. You wave your arms until a woman stops and calls 911 for you.
Minnesota Muslims are finding themselves voiceless, discussed, defined, categorized, psychoanalyzed, talked at and talked about without a serious attempt at inclusion. Muslims, and friends of Muslims, would like to change this climate. Engage Minnesota is a blog that begins that effort…
Knowing all this happens in Minnesota, and that it happened to Mohamed Ismail in Blaine on January 27, 2008, what are you, reading this now, going to do about it?
What You Can Do
Please come to a town hall meeting for Minnesotans to address this and other hate crimes on Thursday, March 27, at 7 p.m. Location: Anoka Technical College Auditorium, 1335 West Highway 10, Anoka, MN 55303.
The event is cosponsored by CAIR, Lake Harriet United Methodist Church, Anoka Technical College Student Senate, and the NAACP.


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