Muslim Children of Immigrant Parents Find Their Way

September 15, 2005

Source: The San Diego Union-Tribune

On September 15, 2005 The San Diego Union-Tribune reported, "The dome of California's capitol rises above the trees, another kind of Mecca for a group of teenagers making a pilgrimage to Sacramento last month for a historic Muslim youth leadership workshop. In Carlsbad, on a cool August night, about three dozen college-age Muslim men and women are making a bit of history on their own as they carry banners protesting a congressman's remarks about bombing Islamic holy sites. And in the living room of a Rancho Peñasquitos home a few weeks ago, a young girl faces her own turning point about whether to wear an emblem of her faith. A generation of homegrown Muslims is coming of age. These sons and daughters of immigrants, many with families still living in the Muslim world, are learning to speak out both as Americans and followers of Islam. 'Their parents were the first generation of American Muslims,' says Affad Shaikh, as he watched people paint banners for last month's demonstration. 'They are afraid to take a stand and afraid for their children, because they don't want to risk their futures, their careers. But these young people ... are different,' says Shaikh, himself a 22-year-old UCSD graduate who now works for an advocacy group called the Council on American-Islamic Relations. 'They want to be a part of the solution.'"

See also: Islam, Youth