Tags: Immigration | Religion | Trump Refugee Ban | us. iman shortage | travel ban | violence against muslims

America's Growing Muslim Community Faces Imam Shortage

Image: America's Growing Muslim Community Faces Imam Shortage
Protests such as these armed protesters from the so-called Bureau of American-Islamic Relations (BAIR),  in front of a mosque on December 12, 2015 in Richardson, Texas may be causing an iman shortage.

By    |   Sunday, 26 November 2017 08:57 AM

America's growing population of Muslims has been met with a shortage of those willing to lead them in the role of imam, a prospect that might lead young people to become radicalized, Politico reported Sunday.

"If people don't have knowledge about Islam from the right source, they wind up going to an extreme, whether it is to the right or the left," North American Imam's Federation's Omar Shahin told Politco. "That is a dangerous thing for everybody."

The U.S. has about 2,500 mosques and it is estimated more than half do not have a full-time imam, according to the report, and threats of violence against mosques and President Donald Trump's travel ban point to the reasons for that.

"A strong leader who provides a sense of structure and what is right and wrong offers certainty," Stanford University's Sarah Lyons-Padilla, who studies terrorism, told Politico. "So when you remove leaders, like an imam, then you're basically introducing more uncertainty into an already troubled domain."

Because of a fear of being detained, President Trump's travel ban cut an estimated 200 temporary imams coming to the United States around this past June's Ramadan to a mere 15, Shahin reported to Politico.

"[Young Muslims] have no good place to go without an imam," Abu Marwan, a Masjid Al-Rahma president outside San Diego, told Politico. "They go to the Internet or Google, and they can end up somewhere very bad. A good imam is the best answer to any evil thing.

Islamophobia and violence from it are deterrents, too, according to the report.

"All of this scares people from working as an imam," Shahin told Politico. "Who wants to be in the middle of all of these problems, or if your coming from overseas, turned back home at the airport?"

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America's growing population of Muslims has been met with a shortage of those willing to lead them in the role of imam, a prospect that might lead young people to become radicalized, Politico reported Sunday."If people don't have knowledge about Islam from the right source,...
us. iman shortage, travel ban, violence against muslims
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2017-57-26
Sunday, 26 November 2017 08:57 AM
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