Categorized | USA, Human Rights

I stand with Rania Barakat against “no hijab” policy!

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By Mahmoud El-Yousseph

Bren Brown, who is the CEO of Frontier Justice at a Missouri gun range, made a national news when he denied service at his range to a young Muslim woman named Rania Barakat after she refused to remover her “hijab.” He believes they did nothing wrong and she claims it was racial discrimination.
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No Hijab policy at his firing range is practically declaring the business as a “Muslim Free Zone.”  That is reminiscent of a dark and sad chapter of America’s past where business in the South were posting signs that read, “No dogs, no Negros, no Mexicans” or, “Help Wanted – No Irish Need Apply.”  It’s amazing to think that this kind of bigotry and racism still exist and is tolerated at this day and age.

Mr. Brown brags about his business motto, “Faith Family Freedom”, but the way Mrs. Barakat was treated shows the range does not respect faith, honor family, or value freedom. Frontier Justice turned the special time Rania and her husband were trying to spend together at the range into a humiliating and degrading experience.  When Rania asked to see the company’s dress code policy, it did show that the dress code prohibits head covering but it does exempt hoodies and a forward-facing baseball cap on the range for safety reasons. As the church lady would say, “Ain’t that special!” In other words, what this policy really implies is if you are a Muslim, you are not welcome, trustworthy, a potential terrorist, and someone who does not love America.

The Muslim community in Missouri deserves to be treated with dignity, fairness, and respect. Instead of marginalizing and maligning Muslims, Frontier Justice staff and president should visit one of the 33 mosques across “the show me” state, meet with Missouri Muslim communities, learn about their faith, and about their prospective Muslim patrons. Perhaps they would learn that Islam is the fastest-growing religion and is considered as the world’s second religion with 7 million Muslims living the United States and more than 1.8 billion all over the globe. I am sure Muslims in Missouri will be more than happy to meet and greet them.

Take it from this retired veteran, Muslim-Americans are a part of the fabric that makes this country great. They have sacrificed to keep America free and safe and have served in every war and conflict since the Revolutionary War. The Association of Patriotic Arab Americans in the Military (www.@apaam.org) put the number of Muslims currently serving in all branches of the Armed Forces to over 6,000 members.

Muslims are sick and tired of being blamed for ills in America. All what they want is to live, work, study, worship, and travel free from bigotry and discrimination. Rania Barkat is now pushing back and could use extra help. If you’re as angry as I am about how Rania Barakat was abused and mistreated, now is your chance to make a difference. You could call Frontier Justice @ Tel: 913-215- 9177 with your feedback and U.S. Department of Justice / The Civil Rights Division @ Tel: 202-514-4509 and ask them to investigate Frontier Justice’s refusal to provide service to Rania Barakat because of her hijab and to enforce federal laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, sex, disability, religion, and national origin.

“Reach out for those who ignored you, give to the one who deprived, and forgive those who oppressed you.”~ Prophet Mohammad (Peace be upon him)

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