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In the Name of God بسم الله

Stop glorifying white converts while demonizing POC

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As the title says, stop glorifying white converts to Islam by putting them on a pedestal. I know that people want to be supportive of converts, but rarely do I see converts who are POC embraced in the same way as white converts are. Saying things like, "Converts are more beloved to God than born-Muslims." "Oh mashallah you are so much more knowledgable than other Muslims." not only gives people a big head, but it also dehumanizes them. And not to mention that it feeds into the narrative of the internalized "White Savior" ideaology, that we all need some "perfect" white convert, who, because they have converted, are angelic and "sinless" to be a good example on how to be a Muslim. 

However, when a POC converts, rarely are they given that same recognition. Just look at, say, videos of converts on Youtube. White converts are glorified with people saying how amazing they are, and turning a blind eye to problematic stunts, making excuses for their toxicity. They get the most views and likes. They are frequently hounded for marriage. Wheras POC converts aren't seen as having the same struggles as other converts, they aren't easily considered to be "marriage material" because of their skin tone or their race. They are expected to fit in cultural norms whereas white converts can get away with anything and people will still make excuses for them.

Thoughts?

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Who does that? 

If that's a real thing, I guess that's the positive side of me being a recluse - I don't get exposed to casual racism much. 

 

But before I was a hermit, none of that glorification was my experience as a white convert. I was usually eyed with suspicion and excluded from activities. 

Edited by notme
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Expect that white female converts get pressured for marriage, I would say most converts unless they assimilate totally to the culture of the hussainia are ignored.

Also it works both ways I have seen Arabs Persians and Whites treated very badly at a few of the african american/carribean hussaynias in nyc la milw chi atl etc

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1 hour ago, Guest Abu-hassanain said:

white female converts get pressured for marriage

If you mean by marriage mutah only, yes this happens. If you mean the "born Muslim" gentlemen are knocking down white convert women's doors begging for permanent respectable marriage, no. 

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8 hours ago, Guest Window said:

Thoughts?

My thoughts are that you are correct. But I fear that people will now argue with you because of the aggressive and instigative tone used. It puts people on "defense mode." Nobody likes being told what to do/think, especially when they're being told to stop doing something wrong. A more effective way of persuading people is as a suggestion, or a kind share of an insight, or just putting your thoughts on the table. A present is a nice thing, but what if you gave it to them by beaming it at their face? Suddenly they won't be so pleased. You just put on us the sin of demonizing POC and glorifying white converts, now you've gotten all the people who don't do that (a lot) mad. They will either deny it, or say the issue is not as bad as you propose.

I see that you have many ideas and insights to share, but you often find yourself in arguments. It is not because of what you say, but how you're saying it.

Edited by guest 2025
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Imam Ali peace be upon him said: One who says unpleasant things about others, will himself quickly become a target of their scandal.

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11 hours ago, Guest Window said:

As the title says, stop glorifying white converts to Islam by putting them on a pedestal. I know that people want to be supportive of converts, but rarely do I see converts who are POC embraced in the same way as white converts are. Saying things like, "Converts are more beloved to God than born-Muslims." "Oh mashallah you are so much more knowledgable than other Muslims." not only gives people a big head, but it also dehumanizes them. And not to mention that it feeds into the narrative of the internalized "White Savior" ideaology, that we all need some "perfect" white convert, who, because they have converted, are angelic and "sinless" to be a good example on how to be a Muslim. 

However, when a POC converts, rarely are they given that same recognition. Just look at, say, videos of converts on Youtube. White converts are glorified with people saying how amazing they are, and turning a blind eye to problematic stunts, making excuses for their toxicity. They get the most views and likes. They are frequently hounded for marriage. Wheras POC converts aren't seen as having the same struggles as other converts, they aren't easily considered to be "marriage material" because of their skin tone or their race. They are expected to fit in cultural norms whereas white converts can get away with anything and people will still make excuses for them.

Thoughts?

I agree—while it's true that not all Arabs, Persians and South Asians think alike it's equally true that mass social thinking patterns prevail among said communities and a derogatory African (i.e. black) depiction is often present in many aspects of modern MENA culture—these prejudices are often outgrowths of MENA countries cucking to modernity where Eurocentric worldviews are heralded—these trends can also be traced to ancient superstitious attitudes—light complexions, blue (or green) eyes, blonde hair, Nordic facial features are considered beautiful blessings—while thick lips, broad noses, dark skin and kinky hair are thought of as ugly, uncivilized and associated with plagues and curses. 

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I think that there is always a tendency to 'glorify' converts.  They can be seen as a trophy.  "Look what we won from the 'opposition'" kind of attitude.

The important thing is the long haul.  Are they still on the journey one year, five years, ten years on?  What do we do to help people in the transition from one faith to another?

When I see someone's life transformed through meeting God through Jesus the Messiah, I have a responsibility to walk with them, alongside and available.  Hearing their struggles and joining in their joys.

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I don't know if its an issue related or tied to their reversion. It simply depends what community/context you are operating in. 

You would similarly be "disturbed" by the excess adulation some Caucasian randomer tourists, non Muslim, perhaps even hippies get when they visit some countries. I have seen this happen in some majority shia countries.

Some communities have larger numbers of people who over admire certain races and communities, and it has little to do with the reversion factor. They are equally likely to bend over backwards in a business transaction with them.

At the same time, I also know of communities, mine included, which view most white reverts as spies, women out for an oriental experience at marriage, etc, so there is little to no genuine enthusiasm about them, and this attitude also applies to them in other spheres in life e.g. in a business transaction, one would expect them to be out to take advantage.

Perhaps as communities and individuals we need to tone down on generalizations  and really learn to look at people as individuals.

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On 10/14/2021 at 8:47 PM, guest 2025 said:

But I fear that people will now argue with you because of the aggressive and instigative tone used. It puts people on "defense mode."

MENA and S. Asian Muslims need to start engaging in loud, frank discussions regarding topics related to manifestations of Third World social backwardness such as: excessive use of power (control) over subordinates in workplace situations, self-hatred, xenophobia, classism, regionalism, colorism, sectarianism, nationalism, sexism etc.—as fear societies (or honor-shame based cultures) we tend to sweep everything underneath the rug—we've tried this approach for centuries and it doesn't seem to be working—perhaps we need to try something new—we want white liberals to be vocal and aggressive when speaking out against Islamophobia but within our own intimate circles of friends/relatives we hypocritically dismiss examples of anti-blackness with exemptions like, "Oh, they're just joking" or "Well, that was one isolated experience/incident" or "They didn't mean it like it sounded" or "They don't know any better" etc.—we're an extremely racist people and we're in deep denial about it—as non-black people of color (POC) we settle into harmful neutral territory and fully embrace a color hierarchy of complexions (e.g. Yasir Habib's 'Lady of Heaven' where the villains are portrayed with stereotypical dark skin and classic African features)

Edited by Eddie Mecca
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It's interesting how this thread has changed from looking at the 'glorification' of white converts to a discussion about racism and prejudice in the Muslim communities you represent.

As I am not a member of a Muslim community, I can't give an insider view. However, I have lived in Muslim majority countries and have always felt welcomed and accepted.  Maybe once or twice I have experienced 'prejudice', maybe, because I'm not a Muslim but I understand that position.

My understanding of a faith community is that it should be grounded on love and acceptence.  Jesus the Messiah said "love one another just as I have loved you".  Jesus' love for us is unconditional without regard to skin colour, gender, social status or religious heritage.

My understanding of the Ummah of Muslims is similar.  Unfortunately these ideals don't always work out in practice, neither in the Christian community or, it would seem from this thread, in Muslim communities.

I need to contue to ask God to pour his love into my life so it overflows uncondionaly to whoever I meet and engage with whether inside or outside my community of faith.

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