Dawud Walid

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Imam Dawud Walid is currently the Executive Director of the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MI), which is a chapter of America’s largest advocacy and civil liberties organization for American Muslims and is a member of the Michigan Muslim Community Council (MMCC) Imams Committee.

CAIR Michigan 2010 Banquet

Nihad Awad, Wendell Anthony, Dawud Walid, John Conyers, Lena Masri, Jesse Jackson, Jr., Ron Scott, Raheem Hanifa, and Jukaku Tayeb

The 2010 Michigan CAIR gala, was held on March 31, with about "1,000 attendees including many powerful audience members from the business, media, and political community". Present at this year’s fundraiser was Nihad Awad, who founded CAIR and set it up as a not-for-profit franchise operation of sorts, with now branch offices across the country to advocate for Muslims.

But the real jewels in the crown of the 2010 CAIR Michigan fundraiser were the civil rights workers who for sixty years have been deeply involved at their own personal peril with the struggle for civil rights in the USA.

Jesse Jackson , the keynote speaker, was one of those. But there was also Rep. John Conyers (D-MI-14), whom Jackson described as “perhaps the only man who was ever endorsed by Martin Luther King.” There was Rep. John Dingell (D-MI-15). There were many others, including the strong gubernatorial candidate Virg Bernero (currently Lansing’s mayor).

Other attendees included Wendell Anthony, Imam and CAIR Michigan Executive Director Dawud Walid, CAIR Michigan Attorney Lena Masri, Ron Scott, Raheem Hanifa, and Jukaku Tayeb of CAIR Michigan.[1]

CAIR panel

Representatives from the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR - Michigan) July 2010 gave oral testimony at a special town hall meeting on racial profiling with government officials and civil rights attorneys at the Wayne State University Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights in Detroit.

The town hall meeting, which was organized by the Rights Working Group and co-sponsored by CAIR-MI, had panelists taking testimony on racial and religious profiling from civil rights activists and community organizers. Panelists hearing testimony included U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan Barbara McQuade, Michigan State Representative Rashida Tlaib, Michigan Civil Rights Commissioner Nabih Ayad, and Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) Executive Director Vincent Warren.

CAIR - Michigan Executive Director Dawud Walid and CAIR-MI Staff Attorney Lena Masri testified about growing constituent concerns regarding surveillance and misuse of confidential informants in mosques and religious profiling during re-entry into the United States. Walid elaborated on the chilling effect on Michigan Muslims to freely exercise their First Amendment rights to Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Assembly in light of last year's fatal shooting of Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah in Dearborn by FBI agents based on a raid provoked by the use of confidential informants.

CAIR - Cleveland Executive Director Julia Shearson was also in attendance and monitored testimony offered.

Other organizations who participated in the town hall included the American Civil Liberties Union - Michigan (ACLU-MI), Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS), Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality, and Mexican American Legal Defense Educational Fund (MALDEF). [2]

Twitter event

The official autopsy report for Michael Brown came out on October 22 — the same day the Coalition to Stop Police Brutality, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation has observed a National Day of Protest since 1996. To mark this important day, hundreds of Muslims took to Twitter to show their solidarity using the hashtag #Muslims4Ferguson.

Organized by the Muslims for Ferguson Facebook group, which launched on August 21, the Twitter event invited Muslims everywhere to join in conversation with Imam Omar Suleiman, Imam Dawud Walid, Imam Suhaib Webb and civil rights activists Linda Sarsour and Mustafa Abdullah.

The group wrote on its Facebook page:

Too many lives have been lost in communities of color because of the criminalization of black and brown bodies — who are being killed and imprisoned and abused because of their dark skin...

We are coming together to say no more Mike Browns, no more John Crawfords, no more Ramarley Grahams, no more Eric Garners, no more Renisha McBrides, no more Trayvon Martins. As Eric Garner said before he was murdered, “It ends today.”[3]

Call for Justice

Call for Justice: Joint Letter on American Muslim Solidarity Against Police Brutality, January 26, 2015;

We are contacting you on behalf of the Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative (MuslimARC)(1) and Muslims for Ferguson(2) to ask for your solidarity in the struggle and call for justice concerning the tragic and unnecessary police and federal law enforcement killings of Black men, women, and children in the United States.

From the time of our Noble Prophet ﷺ‎, anti-Black and anti-African racism has plagued Muslim societies and communities. The first martyr in the early days of Islam was Sumayyah (RA), who had black skin and was a victim of violence at the hands of the governing authorities of Makkah. Other companions with black skin, such as Ammar bin Yassir (RA) and Bilal (RA), were also victims of ridicule and torture by the same authorities. State violence against marginalized communities is not a new development. History has proven time and again that Muslims are not immune to these forms of oppression.

Indeed, these oppressive behaviors and practices go against the messages that are at the heart of our Holy Qur’an and Prophetic traditions.

Signatories included Dawud Walid - Detroit.

Arrested at Ryan's office

March 5, 2018, several Muslim-American leaders were arrested at the US Capitol while urging Congress to stand against President Donald Trump's effort to end a programme that protects certain young immigrants.

Omar Suleiman, Dawud Walid, Mujahid Fletcher, Talib Shareef and Nihad Awad of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), Zahra Billoo, and Linda Sarsour advocated immigration reform before getting arrested.

The protesters participated in an act of civil disobedience at the office of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Paul Ryan, demanding that he meet them to hear their concerns.

Demonstrations have taken place in major cities across the US in support of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programme that protects young undocumented immigrants from deportations.

Fletcher, who also came to the US as a child from Columbia, said he shared the experience of the Dreamers, people who came into the US illegally as children.

"We don't want to live based on fear. We want to live according to the principles of freedom of speech, of religion," he said.

Quoting Malcolm X, Talib Shareef of the Muslim Alliance of North America said: "Almighty Allah has told us to stand for justice. We are not weak in faith and we are here for a mobilization.

"We stand here in the spirit of Malcolm X with the people who are affected by these policies."

"This is creating real fear," Suleiman said, adding that the imams are fighting white supremacy because Islamophobia, racism and hostility against immigrants all stem from the same roots.[4]

References

  1. [http://muslimmedianetwork.com/mmn/?p=6000 The Muslim Observer, CAIR Michigan’s Watershed Annual Banquet, April 1, 2010 by TMO By Adil James
  2. https://www.cair.com/cair_mi_reps_testify_at_racial_profiling_town_hall_with_u_s_attorneyCAIR CAIR-MI Reps Testify at Racial Profiling Town Hall With U.S. Attorney POSTED BY CAIR WEBMASTER 14SC ON JULY 01, 2010]
  3. [1]
  4. Al Jazeera Linda Sarsour arrested at Paul Ryan's office, March 6, 2018