Monday, May 31, 2010

Miss USA 2010- A Victory for Muslims??

The new face of American beauty is- Rima Fakih, a beautiful Lebanese born American. She emigrated with her parents to the United States as a baby and attended Catholic school in New York City until her family moved to Michigan in 2003. After her win, Rima commented - "I think it would prove that Arabs don't always try to separate themselves, but instead are integrated into American culture" . She also stated that her and her family celebrate both Muslim and Christian holidays. Personally, I do not think that a person no matter what religion they belong to, should make concessions regarding their beliefs just to become "integrated" into their country's culture. To me her comment was really ignorant and just makes me say "what a sell out" lol. Okay let me stop lol. A Muslim women doesn't have to in a beauty pageant to become integrated.

But the main issue here is that many are saying that it's such a milestone for America to have the first Muslim Miss USA. But honestly, in my opinion this is not a victory for Muslim Americans, she simply represents the face of a new type of America. Rima Fakih, does not represent Islam or Muslim women.
Muslim women are modest and do not parade on stage in skimpy bikinis! She simply represents Arab Americans.
It's just a beauty pageant! Her victory is not going to bring about any type of change for Muslim Americans.
.Plus it's not like her victory is going to change the American perception of Muslims. Already right after her win, many are bringing up the fact that one of her uncles is a member of Hezbollah and how she comes from a strict Shi'a family.

Why do Muslims in Western countries have to make so many concessions in order to be accepted by the societies in which they live? Honestly, I would rather live in this world as a stranger, than have to give up aspects of my religious beliefs just to be accepted by society and become completely integrated into American culture. Yes, I am an American by birth, but for me it will always be us Muslims and them (the non Muslim Americans). I would never want to become FULLY integrated. Many disagree with me, please share your thoughts on this!

1 comment:

MuslimFirst said...

As salaamu alaikum Sr. Zarga -

I agree with you - it's not a victory for us at all and as you know, when those pictures of her came out a short time later at some stripping competition - it just shows that she's not really representative of even Arab Americans to a degree.

As far as integration - we should be able to contribute to the society in which we live in a positive manner, while still maintaining our way of life/faith/values. There is no point in trying to integrate while giving up your core being and personality. As long as we can be educated, we can make great strides in our non-Muslim societies and be respected - hopefully - by our non-Muslim counterparts and thus show we are successful members of that society.

You're right, there is still a lot of negatively out there - thus when someone with a Muslim/Arab background shows that they are not really practicing or very very liberal, the media and others will gobble it up and show that this is how we should be if we want to fit in.

Those are my thoughts.

Br. 'Baba' aka MuslimFirst.