This Fourth of July, why I love America, like most Muslim Americans
Americans may not be able to name all the articles of the Constitution, but they’ve been taught its ethic for most of their lives. Equality and tolerance are instilled in them. After religious persecution drove me from my native Pakistan, that is why I gratefully call America "home."
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Americans may not be able to name all the articles and clauses of the Constitution, but they’ve been taught its ethic for most of their lives. It is instilled in them. It allows passionate debates over sensitive issues like whether a woman has a right to abortion or not, whether children born to illegal immigrants are automatically eligible for US citizenship, whether same-sex couples should be allowed to marry, or whether a mosque should be built near ground zero – instead of applying duct tape over the lips of a minority position.Skip to next paragraph
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No wonder millions flock to the American shores. The United States accepts more legal immigrants every year than all other countries combined. In 2008, over a million people were naturalized as US citizens, mainly emigrating from Mexico, India and China.
US gives Muslims for freedom than their home countries
Talk to Muslim Americans and you will hear just how valued, how precious, this tolerance is to them. Some would strongly disagree with the American foreign policy, and some would lament about a personal experience of discrimination. But in my experience, all would agree on one thing: that the United States provides them with more freedom, more security, more opportunity, and more peace than the country from which they emigrated.
Since that day on the Jersey shore, I have made it a habit to make room for my fellow citizens wherever I can. It’s only my way to reciprocate to you, America, for you have made room for millions of immigrants like me and provided us the opportunity to live with equality, justice, and freedom.
I still get teary eyed thinking about my homeland; particularly with all the mayhem in the name of religion. But, whenever my plane takes off from the Baltimore-Washington Airport, I look down at the rooftops and my heart says, “That’s my home, that’s my home.”
Faheem Younus is an adjunct faculty member for religion and history at the Community Colleges of Baltimore County and a clinical associate professor at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He blogs at The Huffington Post.