STATEMENT FROM THE ISLAMIC SOCIETY OF CORONA-NORCO ON POLICE VIOLENCE, ANTI BLACKNESS, AND RACISM
June 3, 2020
To God we belong and to Him we shall return
"Whosoever killed a person ... it shall be as if he had killed all mankind" (5:32).
On Monday, May 25, 2020, we heard the words “I can’t breathe” reverberate throughout the world as another soul was lost to senseless violence by people who have taken an oath to protect and serve. In the recent past there have been many similar instances that have come to light only because of people videotaping them. We, at Islamic Society of Corona-Norco, extend our deepest condolences to the families and friends of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and all the other victims of police brutality and white racial extremism. As a community we acknowledge and reflect with sadness on the ongoing subjugation of our black brothers and sisters since the very inception of our nation. We collectively condemn this unabated systemic violence and stand in solidarity with the communities who have known, experienced and suffered because of this kind of brutality and oppression for way too long.
With the most recent senseless killing of George Floyd, we have witnessed institutional racism manifest itself in the form of police violence, police indifference, and dehumanization of people of color. The Islamic Society of Corona-Norco community is connected to this oppression as we are all parties to the political, social, and economic systems that enable white extremism and supremacy and anti-black brutality. As a community, we are committed to standing firm against anti-black or any kind of oppression and we open our hearts to learning and understanding the causes of this discriminatory mentality.
To our black brothers and sisters in the community we know that there is a lot of work to be done to mitigate such atrocities, and that you have been bearing the brunt of it alone for far too long. We hear you and we acknowledge that we need to do better. For this, we are committing ourselves to undergo change and transform as exemplified by our Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him). We also sincerely want to come to terms with the reality that there are various types of racism deeply embedded within our own community. With this realization, we are committed to working with relevant organizations and will utilize resources to equip our community members with the tools necessary to combat anti-blackness or other forms of racism, whether overt, covert, or inadvertent.
Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) said: “Spread peace and you will receive peace.” Our nation is in desperate need of respect, justice, peace, and love. It is clear that this kind of discriminatory violence is not simply the work of a few, but it is in fact deeply rooted in our society. Structural oppression and institutional racism are threats to our community and the soul of our nation, impeding our world from living up to its ideals. Islamic Society of Corona-Norco clearly and explicitly stands against all forms of racism, including both structural and societal anti-black racism and oppression. ISCN calls on its members and congregants to reflect on this racism at this critical juncture and take concrete steps to translate God-given teachings into real-world action, and encourage our brothers and sisters of other faith-based communities to do the same
ISLAMIC SOCIETY OF CORONA-NORCO
Board and Staff of the Islamic Society of Corona-Norco