Albuquerque, NM

Opinion: Members of the Muslim Community Vow to Stay United

Daniella Cressman

Many were shocked to learn that the man charged with killing two Muslim men who is a primary suspect in the murders of two others is himself a Muslim.

That being said, he is part of a different sect than the victims in the homicides.

As a result, the Muslim community has vowed to stay connected during this difficult time: while there is solace in knowing that the killer has been caught, the community is still grieving the loss of innocent lives. These were young men whom were generally known for their kindness towards others.

Each one was too young to die.

"Rain pounded the area as hundreds filled the Islamic Center of New Mexico on Tuesday evening to mourn the four local Muslim men whose lives were taken in the past year. Samia Assed, who organized the event, said the news of an arrest brought some semblance of closure for a community that had been in 'a great panic' over the past week. But she said the arrest of a Muslim man was a 'shock.'" —Matthew Reisen

It is all too easy to put an entire community in a box when one does not understand their faith, but I would argue that freedom of speech consists of allowing people to follow whatever belief system resonates with them—even if you do adamantly disagree with aspects of it—and remain respectful.

Samia Assed pointed out how crucial it is for different sects of the Muslim community to respect and honor each other's differences, even if that simply means agreeing to disagree.

We should all approach people with kindness, respect, and some level of acceptance, even if we strongly disagree with them. After all, every major religion on earth preaches peace, love, and harmony—not just to the neighbors you agree with, but to everyone.

Samia Assed stated that it is crucial to ensure that all Muslims stay united, even if they are from different sects.

"This is a sigh of relief, but at the same time, we’re going to be really cognizant of making sure — moving forward as a Muslim community — that we stay united. … We don’t want to divide between our different sects." —Samia Assed

Samia Assed is Ahmad Assed's sister. Ahmad Assed is the president of the Islamic Center of New Mexico.

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Canadian-American author writing about local politics, personal finance, & dining in Albuquerque.

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