by Cassandra Bettan
February 28, 2017 | News
In hopes of educating the Dawson community on Muslims and Islam, Dawson’sMuslim Student Association has decided to host two events—“Beauty of Islam” on March 24th , and “Islamic Awareness Day” sometime during mid-April.
The “Beauty of Islam” event will be centred around the Islamic faith and “bringing back the Islamic spirit to Muslims and non-Muslims,” says Muslim Student Association President Nevin Hoque. The event will have a five-dollar entrance fee, and will host numerous speakers, comedy skits, poems, quiz games, and of course, food.
The MSA’s aim in holding an “Islamic Awareness Day,” is to set right many of the misconceptions attached to Islam and Muslims. The guests will be permitted to ask any questions they may have regarding these topics. The event will involve various activities in efforts to encourage people to learn more about Islam. Djazia Bousnina, an MSA member, explains that this event “will show people that there is no reason to fear [Muslims].” She also says that this event will focus particularly on women’s place in Islam, since it is often a pretence for Islamophobia.
Sharing his views on Islamophobia, and the recent anti-Muslim incidents that have been taking place worldwide, Hoque says that, “it really saddens me to see racism and violence go on, because in our generation, the best thing we can do is fight back with love.” Hoque claims that “these things happen because people have a bad understanding of others.”
According to Hoque, the terrorists committing acts of violence “are not Muslims, we do not follow those values at all.”
Bousnina, emphasised the frustration felt by she “and other Muslims [who] find ourselves in a situation where we have to justify our beliefs.” According to Bousnina, the MSA seeks to educate the ignorant, “We choose to shine the light over these misunderstandings instead of hiding in fear.”
Many Dawson students do not know that the MSA exists: one of the reasons the MSA held a vigil following the Quebec mosque shooting, which occurred on January 29 and resulted in the death of six men. Their objective was to “introduce [themselves] to the rest of the Dawson student body” according to their open letter published in the February issue of The Plant. Their goal is to spread the word that the MSA’s door is open to all: Muslim or not, in order to spread their message of peace and harmony.