I had a great Saturday on a bus trip to Iowa to canvass with Clinton supporters and met new friends—on left, Bill Gluba, the long-time mayor of Davenport, Iowa until January, 2016 and Elesha Gayman on the right, former Iowa State Representative from the 84th District. Both were instrumental in the historic victory in 2008 of President Barack Obama in the Iowa’s first in the nation primary election caucus.
I’ll be on the bus again this Saturday because despite all of polls forecasting a resounding Clinton victory, I think it important also to help in Iowa where the race is very close and one can make a difference and because I think it is not just enough to defeat Donald Trump this November. It is important to show that his vision of America, as a bigoted, xenophobic, misogynist, nationalistic and racist cesspool of fear and anxiety, is not the future we want ourselves or our children.
The trip was an opportunity to knock on many doors and meet many other people. One of them, a 22-year-old African American, offered that he had no intention of voting. He felt like it would not make any difference in his life and shockingly he acknowledged that he did not expect to live long enough to worry about a future. I explained to him that his future was in his own hands; that he has to do everything he can to make it better. There are no perfect solutions but we make small decisions every day to make things better.
I talk to young people often who have similar, albeit not so pessimistic attitudes. Many of them ask, “What has Obama done for us?” I ask them: “What have you done for yourself in the last eight years.?” We must stop looking for saviors and take care of our own destinies.
Allah (G-d) says He will not change the condition of the person until they change what is in their heart (soul). His Messenger, our Prophet Muhammad, the prayers and the peace be upon him, said “whoever of you sees an evil must then change it with his hand. If he is not able to do so, then [he must change it] with his tongue. And if he is not able to do so, then [he must change it] with his heart. And that is the slightest [effect of] faith.” This tells us that it is possible for any person, with any capacity, of any amount of resources, to do something.
From “Yes, I Am Your Brother”
The heart is the seat of belief. We know things through the mind, but even without cognitive process and even without facts, we still feel. We can still believe. And we still have an obligation to at least feel something.
Politics and Business today is so obscured by money and the quest for power that it is almost impossible to know what is going on. Millennials sense this and because of a natural impulsiveness of youth, their instinct is to discard the whole system instead of trying to sort it out. Even if we can’t change a problem right away we’re obligated to speak out against it or at least detest it. We can’t however remain indifferent. No one who will not vote or work in the cause of making society better has a right to complain.