Seizing the moment, the US Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO), a coalition of leading national and local Muslim organizations, announced on December 21, 2015, major educational, outreach and civic empowerment initiatives to address growing Islamophobia in America and to enhance national harmony through the promotion of freedom and justice.
The USCMO initiatives include: a One America Campaign to enhance understanding of American Muslims and Islam; a Million Voters Registration Drive prior to the 2016 presidential election; and a National Open Mosque Day designed to help increase interactions between American Muslims and citizens of other faiths and backgrounds. Another initiative planned by the national Muslim coalition includes the formation of new and strengthened alliances with interfaith partners, social justice groups and other minority communities that have faced or continue to face similar challenges.
One America Campaign is an effort designed to “push back” against what has become a consistent effort to balkanize US citizens into mutually antagonistic subgroups. A common feature of such efforts is the notion that one or more of these subgroups should have restricted rights (temporarily or permanently) due to a pressing need to protect this country’s national security. Consequently, One America Campaign is one way to assertively say that we can, in fact, have it both ways. That is, we can respect our pluralistic democracy while vigilantly protecting this nation from those who wish to harm us. It is our strong belief that scapegoating particular American citizens simply because of their faith will leave us with a country that is actually less safe and more prejudiced.
The initiatives announced at the news conference were discussed Sunday, December 20, 2015 at a day-long national summit of more than 130 national and regional American Muslim leaders held in Virginia and representing all areas of the country and all segments of that faith community. Sunday’s summit was convened in response to the unprecedented rise in bias incidents targeting American Muslims in the wake of the Paris terror attacks, the San Bernardino killings and recent inflammatory anti-Muslim political rhetoric.
We would like to encourage the leadership of US mosques, shura councils, local and national Muslim organizations to join hands for the various initiatives of One America Campaign. it is a sincere effort on behalf of USCMO to reach out to like-minded US ethno-religious groups and organizations, regardless of race, color or creed, for a common cause. In a nutshell we invite all those who want a safer, more culturally respectful, country to work together for One America.