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Mosque in Cleveland
Society and Community:
Muslims in America
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Despite all the recent attention given the Muslim community in the United States, many adherents feel their religion and culture have been misrepresented and misunderstood — both by the media and the nation at large. Dr. Azizah al-Hibri, an author and professor of law at the University of Richmond, strips away some of the stereotypes and helps illuminate a faith and people who are anything but one-dimensional.

Dr. Azizah Y. al-Hibri
Dr. Azizah Y. al-Hibri, Professor of Law

(Azizah al Hibri on NPR's TALK OF THE NATION) Islam is a religion of many different sects and many different interpretations, even within its sects. We do not have a church structure. We do not have one person who interprets the religion for us and tells us what to follow. And the relationship in Islam is between the Muslim directly and his or her god. Part of that liberty means -- as we know with First Amendment rights in the United States -- that there will be risks that certain people will read the Koran and understand it in ways that are different from the way I would understand it. When I read the Koran, it is very clear to me that some of the basic tenets of the Koran have to do with basic consultative democracy."
Muslims in America

Num. of Muslims in the U.S.:  7  million
Num. of American Muslims associated with a mosque:  2  million
Num. of mosques in the U.S.:  1,209
% of regular mosque participants who are male:  75%
% of regular mosque participants who are African-American:  30%
% of regular mosque participants who are Arab:  25%
Source: "The Mosque in America: A National Portrait," a study conducted by the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the Hartford Institute for Religion Research
(April 26, 2001)

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