Amara S. Chaudhry, Esquire – Civil Rights Director & Staff Attorney
People keep asking me to respond to this event in my capacity as an ‘American Muslim,’ but, in truth, I’m not responding to this event as either an American, or as a Muslim. I’m simply responding to these events as a human being who is mourning a tragic and unnecessary loss of life. I’m sad, and I’m perplexed. I don’t understand how, and why, anyone would take the lives of people who seek to establish peace and diplomacy. But, again, the feelings of any ordinary human being. My feelings aren’t any different because I’m an American Muslim.
I don’t feel the need to prove how American I am, or how patriotic and peace-loving American Muslims are. This is not the moment, or context, for us to talk about ourselves and who we are. Now is the time to honor the lives of those we have lost. I mourn those losses of human life, and I send my condolences to the families of those we have lost.
Any human being which values human life would condemn these killings and condemn all acts of terrorism – so, of course I condemn these attacks. But now is an inappropriate time for others, who seek political gain, to question my humanity and the humanity of my fellow Muslims. For this reason, I will not use these deaths as a political tool through which I seek to prove my humanity and that of my fellow Muslims.