Perspective: You Muslim Kids In The US Have No Idea What It Was Like Here Forty Years Ago A 70's Muslim immigrant reflects back on a life full of adversities

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Shafique Mansoor immigrated to Lubbock, Texas from Pakistan to study Civil Engineering. As the only Muslim in a fifty-mile radius, Mansoor recalls a life of hardship.

The following is an editorial written by Shafique Mansoor whose views and opinions are his own and do not reflect the viewpoints of Islamica News.

Hey guys, it’s me… the uncle who migrated to the United States from Pakistan back in the early seventies to pursue an education, and ultimately go back to my country but never did.

I just wanted to tell all of you Ramadan Mubarak, and I hope you’re having a great time tweeting pics of every damn crumb of food that enters your face-hole during sunset.

You know, you Muslim kids living in the North America have it so good nowadays. Back when I first migrated to this country, I was one of THREE Muslims living in a fifty-mile radius. And the other two weren’t real Muslims at all — one of them was a white guy who played the voice of Hadji from Jonny Quest. Oh, what an accent!

Today you have mosques EVERYWHERE — for shi’ahs, sunnis, sisters-only mosques, creepy brothers centers – AND YOU STILL COMPLAIN! What I wouldn’t give to have one good mosque to go to back then. The closest thing we had to a mosque was a condemned mobile home that we shared with a KKK grand wizard and a gaze of raccoons. Our Friday sermons consisted of some white supremacists telling us to go back to Nicaragua!

Technically they weren’t Islamophobes. No one knew what to hate because no one really knew what we were.

And we couldn’t afford a real Hafiz, so we paid some guy that kinda knew Surah Ikhlas. I remember that first Ramadan… he read Surah Ikhlas for ALL 20 TARAWEEH RAKAHS! We’d ask him questions on fiqh, and he’d just respond with ANOTHER recitation of Surah Ikhlas!

Wudu centers were a luxury. To do wudu, we had to report a fire so that the local fire department could come hose us down three times!

You kids have it so good with all your abundant sources of halal food. Do you think there were halal meat stores during our time?!? NOPE. We had to go into survival mode and resort to eating bacon. Delicious bacon every single morning with tears streaming down our cheeks. This was way before Google, so there was no way to research what pepperoni pizza really was. We’d scarf down ten slices at a time and wash it down with cold beers (no Google, remember?). Many years later, our version of a Halal Food Festival was a bag of kosher marshmallows sold from the back of some random dude’s van.

And holy crap! You have marriage apps now?!? You know how tough it was to find someone suitable to marry?!? We were forced to engage in the local nightlife  to find the closest thing to a Muslim female. Forget ‘people of the book.’ We had to settle for ‘people who heard of a book.’

But I must give it up to heavier white women. For decades they were Pakistani men’s guaranteed pathway to citizenship. God bless them. Even though that first marriage lasted all of 47 minutes. (BTW – If Debbie Auntie asks about me, tell her they threw my brown butt into Guantanamo Bay).

Anyways, you kids should be WAY more grateful than you are. Be thankful for the communities you have and the people you live with. If you think your life is full of challenges, just remember a younger, smellier version of me eid hugging myself to sleep every night.

 

 

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