Muslim men fare worse than Muslim women when it comes to negative stereotyping. The common stereotype against Muslim women is that they are oppressed and therefore warrant people’s sympathy and support. The Muslim men on the other hand, are looked upon as the oppressor and therefore, worthy of contempt. I should know, I am married to a Muslim man, and I have had to deal with a few insinuations and even outright biases levied against my wonderful husband, from people who did not know him at all. I remember an incident at work where I was telling some colleagues how my family was caught up in a blizzard on our way back from Canada and I decided we wouldn’t be going any further but stop and find a hotel to spend the night, even though my husband was more inclined to continue driving in the blizzard. My colleague’s response was that it was amazing that my husband listened to me, considering that men in my culture do not listen to women. At that time my colleague neither knew where my husband or I were from, nor what culture we belong to, but she nevertheless formed an opinion solely on our Muslim identity.
So on this father’s day, I will take a little detour and appreciate the millions of Muslim men around the world, the unsung heroes of our day to day lives. The family men who work hard every day to ensure the needs of their immediate and in most cases extended family members are met. The ever-present fathers that are at every doctor’s appointments, parents-teacher conferences, and after school activities, yet, comfortably accepting being second best to the mothers. The supportive husbands who are also their spouses’ greatest cheerleaders, urging them on in whatever venture they may partake. The loving uncles who are ever present to provide that extra love and attention; for there’s no such thing as too much love. The affectionate and responsible sons, that are ever cognizant of their parents’ welfare, especially in their old age. The fun and doting grandfathers, who find ingenious ways to spoil the grandchildren. Last but not least, the warm and caring brothers that are ever there for their siblings.
Thank you for all that you do, and even though the court of public opinion may not be on your side, those who know and matter to you, appreciates all that you do
HAPPY FATHER’S DAY!