All Posts by gmsalaam

Michael Bennett Says He Plans to Sue Las Vegas Metro Over August Incident on The Strip

By Monique Judge, Staff Writer, THE ROOT

Seattle Seahaws defensive end Michael Bennett says he was terrified during his encounter with Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Officers on Aug. 27, and he plans to sue the department for what he considers to be an incident that started because of the color of his skin.

“It felt like a movie almost because everything was happening so fast. People were like running, people were scared because nobody knew what was going on,” Bennett told Nightline’s Byron Pitts in his first interview since the incident happened.

Bennett told Pitts that word spread there were gunshots in the lobby of the Cromwell Casino, and people took off running. Bennett confirmed that no one saw a gun, but everyone saw panic.

“We saw police, we saw SWAT, and everybody’s on the ground crawling, and people are asking ‘what are we going to do? what are we going to do?’ so we started trying to get away,” Bennett said.

Bennett told Pitts that once he got outside, he was accosted by two police officers who he says singled him out because of the color of his skin.

“All of a sudden, I hear someone say ‘get on the ground’ and there’s a few guns already drawn, and at that point, I’m just thinking ‘is this really real?’”

Bennett said he was terrified to make a move. He asked the officer to tell him what he did because he was scared and wanted to go home. He says he told the officer that he was Michael Bennett from the Seattle Seahawks, but the officer told him to “Shut the fuck up before I blow your head off.”

Bennett says the officers eventually Googled to confirm he was who he said he was.

In that moment, Bennett says he went from being just a ‘black man’ to being a ‘football player.’

LVMPD contends that Bennett had been running and acting suspiciously. Bennett’s lawyer, John Burris, told Nightline that they want police to release all the videos related to the incident.

“Unless something changes drastically that we don’t know of, we are going to file a lawsuit,” Burris said.

Bennett said it was emotional to explain to his 10-year-old daughter about stereotyping and racial profiling and what it means for him as a black man and her as a young black girl growing up in America.

Bennett said the experience has changed him forever.

“Every time I see my wife, I try to kiss her like it’s the first time we ever met,” Bennett said. “Every time I play with my daughters, I try to hold them like they were just born. Because I don’t know, and that situation right there let me know that it could happen at any moment.

Will ‘Blackout’ Be The Movement to Shut Down The NFL?

By Angela Helm
Ms. Bronner Helm is a Contributing Editor at The Root

This should be an interesting football season—and year, for that matter—since many American institutions are messily having their come-to-Jesus moments.

For the last two days, a video has been circulating on social media (primarily Facebook) with various black men—of all shades, ages, professions, geographical locations—covering their favorite NFL jerseys with a black T-shirt.

#BlackOutNFL is part of a burgeoning and increasingly surging stand against the National Football League, whose owners have decided to make an example of former quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who decided to take a stand for black lives so callously cut down with regularity and impunity.

Pastor Debliare Snell, of the First SDA Church in Huntsville, Ala., spoke openly about why he is behind the #BlackOut movement in the video.

“In 2016, NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick engaged in a silent nonviolent protest,” said Snell. “He did this to raise awareness to the number of brown and black individuals that had been beaten or killed at the hands of law enforcement across this country. Since the end of last season, as a result of this protest, Colin Kaepernick has been unable to find employment in the NFL. I find that strange, seeing that the NFL has employed individuals that have been convicted of sexual assault, domestic violence, cruelty to animals, along with driving while under the influence.”

Snell goes on to say that he finds it “interesting” that certain NFL owners have come out on the record saying they are not hiring Kaepernick because they feel a “backlash” from a certain segment of their fan base but have no fear of African Americans, which Snell claims are 15 percent of NFL viewers (not to mention a majority of its players).

“My belief is simply this: If Colin Kaepernick was willing to take a stand for those of us who are noncelebrities who have to interact with law enforcement on a day-to-day basis … certainly we can take a stand and stand with him.”

The #BlackOut movement advocates four action steps:

  1. Boycott the NFL (no games, no fantasy football, no jerseys, no nothing).
  2. Commit one to two hours during the NFL season that you would have spent watching games to mentoring young black boys and girls.
  3. Spread the word to others.
  4. “Take a knee” in prayer at 6 a.m. each day.

On Aug. 23, Spike Lee and others are planning to march on the NFL headquarters in New York City to protest against what many say is a hypocritical and, in a word, racist NFL. In addition, some players have begun sitting out the national anthem during NFL preseason games.

What Trump has Undone

 by Philip Bump is a correspondent for The Post based in New York City.

We’ve decided to update this list on a weekly basis. Items that have been added or updated since the last iteration are highlighted in yellow.

President Trump has repeatedly argued that he’s done more than any other recent president. That’s not true, as measured by the amount of legislation he’s been able to sign. It is true, though, that Trump has undone a lot of things that were put into place by his predecessors, including President Barack Obama.

Since Jan. 20, Trump’s administration has enthusiastically and systematically undone or uprooted rules, policies and tools that predated his time in office. Below, a list of those changes, roughly organized by subject area.

Did we miss something? Let us know.

The economy

Withdrew from the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The trade deal would have established a trade partnership between the United States and countries on the Pacific Rim.

Revoked a rule that expanded the number of people who could earn overtime pay.

Reversal of a rule that would mandate that oil and gas companies report payments to foreign governments. The Securities and Exchange Commission will no longer receive this information.

Stopped a rule that would require large companies to report worker incomes by race and gender. The rule was aimed at reducing pay disparity.

Ended limits on the ability of states to drug test those seeking unemployment benefits.

Reversed a policy allowing states to develop their own work requirements for welfare recipients.

Revoked an executive order that mandated compliance by contractors with laws protecting women in the workplace. Prior to the 2014 order, a report found that companies with federal contracts worth millions of dollars had scores of violations of labor and civil rights laws.

Repeal of a rule allowing states to create retirement savings plans for private-sector workers.

Cancelled a rule mandating that financial advisers act in the best interests of their clients.

Repeal of a bill that mandated that employers maintain records of workplace injuries.

Removed information about worker injuries from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration website.

Killed a rule mandating that government contractors disclose past violations of labor law.

The justice system

Rescinded an Obama effort to reduce mandatory sentences. Attorney General Jeff Sessions ordered that prosecutors seek the most stringent penalties possible in criminal cases.

Cancelled a phase-out of the use of private prisons.

Reversed restrictions on providing surplus military gear to police departments. Those restrictions were implemented by the Obama administration after the unrest in Ferguson, Mo.

Reversed a ban on civil forfeiture. Law enforcement officials are now once again able to seize assets from suspects who haven’t been convicted of any crime.

Reversed the government’s position on a voter ID law in Texas. Under the Obama administration, the Justice Department argued that the law had discriminatory intent. Under Sessions, Justice withdrew that complaint. On Wednesday, a federal court threw out the law.

Reviewed Justice Department efforts to address problematic police departments. An effort to address concerns in the Baltimore Police Department was delayed.

The environment

On Friday, Politico reported that some representatives of oil and gas companies are worried that Trump’s moving too quickly to reverse regulations on their industry. “[Y]ou don’t need to roll things back so far that it opens an opportunity for outsiders to criticize, or something bad happens,” one analyst said.

Withdrew from the Paris climate agreement.

Blocked the Clean Power Plan. The plan implemented under Obama focused on reducing greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.

Ended a study on the health effects of mountaintop-removal mining. The process involves blasting away the tops of hills and mountains to get at coal seams under the surface.

Rescinded a rule mandating that rising sea levels be considered when building public infrastructure in flood-prone areas.

Reversed an Obama ban on drilling for oil in the Arctic.

Reviewed the status of national monuments for possible reversal. In April, Trump signed an executive order ordering a review of monuments added in the past 20 years, opening up the possibility that some areas previously set aside would have that status revoked.

Withdrew a rule regulating fracking on public land.

Postponed an EPA rule that would have had chemical plants better evaluate and inform the public about possible safety issues. This decision, made in June, drew new attention after Hurricane Harvey flooding led to an explosion at a facility new Houston.

Rejected a proposed ban on the pesticide chlorpyrifos. The month after this decision, a group of farmworkers were sickened by exposure to the chemical.

Reversed a ban on plastic bottles at national parks.

Repealed a ban on lead bullets. The bullets were banned under Obama because the lead can poison wildlife.

Rescinded a limit on the number of sea animals that can be trapped or killed in fishing nets.

Delayed and potentially rolled back automotive fuel efficiency standards.

Repealed the Waters of the United States rule. This rule expanded the definition of water bodies that were protected by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Ended a rule banning dumping waste from mining into streams.

Reversed a rule banning hunting bears and wolves. The ban applied to federal refuges in Alaska and prohibited hunting predators using certain methods.

Repealed a rule that would have centralized federal land management.

Removed a bike-sharing station at the White House.

Foreign policy and immigration

Plans to scale back or end a policy under which people who immigrated to the U.S. illegally as children could work legally and avoid deportation. The program, begun under Obama, is called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or DACA.

Cut the number of migrants and refugees allowed from seven predominantly Muslim countries.

Repealed a rule allowing transgender individuals to serve in the military.

Rolled back of Obama’s outreach to the Cuban government.

Ended the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents program. DAPA extended protections for some immigrant parents whose children were citizens of or residents in the United States.


Rolled back school lunch standards championed by Michelle Obama.

Withdrew federal protections for transgender students in schools. Under the rule approved by Obama, transgender students could use school bathrooms that corresponded to their gender identities.

Reversed a rule that mandated how achievement is measured in schools.

Repealed a rule mandating certain requirements for teacher-preparation programs.

Other areas

Halted or cancelled hundreds of other minor regulatory actions.

Revoked a ban on denying funding for Planned Parenthood at the state level.

Repealed a rule mandating that Internet service providers seek permission before selling personal information.

Cut outreach aimed at bolstering enrollment in Obamacare.

Reversed a rule that would ban gun sales to those deemed “mentally defective” by the government.

Slow or nonexistent staffing at the Senate-confirmed and management level across administration agencies.

Repealed a rule mandating consolidation of transit planning authorities.

Ended the declaration of June as Pride Month and the practice of recognizing the end of Ramadan with an iftar dinner.

Cancelled public reporting on visitors to the White House and other online data.


Muslims Feeding RVA’s Needy For 2 Decades Needs Your Help

The Masjid Bilal Food Bank has operated for more than 20 years under the direction of Dr. James H. Rasheed . Residents from all over the Richmond Churchill community receive grocery items including produce, meats, baked goods and canned goods. Feeding more than 1000 people monthly, the program has been the recipient of numerous community awards. The Masjid Bilal Food Bank, one of the principal ministries of the Muslim American Community RVA , works in collaboration with the Central Virginia Foodbank.

Future plans include merging this project into a Job Readiness, Financial/Computer Literacy Initiative, Restoration of Voter Rights and Integrated Family Visitation Services.

This initiative has relied upon the volunteer efforts of many Churchill residents working side by side with members of the muslim community. The program receives no grants and relies solely upon individual contributions.

This program which is vital to so many families is in jeopardy of closure due rising cost and a reduction in contributions. We need your help!

Become a sustaining supporter of this community program. Please give a generous tax-deductible one time or monthly contribution.

It’s Easy! Just click on the Link below.

We invite you to come by and see your dollars in action! The food bank operates the fourth weekend of each month, Fridays 2pm-4pm and Saturdays 9am –12 noon. To find out more about this initiative, contact James Rasheed at

Because of your donation, your elderly neighbors and children won’t have to go to bed hungry again.









The Mosquescares: Houston Flood Relief

Helping Houston
The Mosque Cares is setting up a coordinated #Harvey fund to assist the Houston community.  If you care to donate click here OR mail check to The Mosque Cares • PO Box 1061, Calumet City, IL 60409
(write Harvey on the memo line).
From Obama.Org
“All weekend, people in Houston, across the Gulf Coast, and around the country have been pitching in to aid those affected by the devastating flooding in southeastern Texas.
We’ve been inspired by the acts of citizens aiding their neighbors, the first responders at work on the ground, and the people around the country who have come together to support those in need.  Help is still needed, and there are many ways for you to contribute from anywhere.”

Muslim Student Association at VCU

The aim and purpose of the Association is to serve the best interest of Islam and the Muslims of Virginia Commonwealth University. Towards this end, the Association shall:

1. Promote understanding of Islam, the Quran and the Sunnah to MSA
2. Promote unity and joint action among the Muslims on campus.
3. Conduct religious, charitable, educational, cultural and service activities according to Islamic tradition.
4. Arrange and hold congregational prayers and Islamic religious festivals at appropriate times.
5. Promote healthy relations and foster cooperation among Muslims and non-Muslims students.
6. Endeavor to raise awareness about Islam and Muslims to the VCU Community

VCU Jumm’ah  Prayers

MSA at VCU holds Jummah prayers every Friday during the school semester.
If you are on campus the MCV campus, prayer is also held at the MCV campus chapel in the hospital. In addition, local masjids including
Masjid Bilal, conveniently located in Churchill (400 Chimborazo Blvd) see map

Masjid Falah (7705 Impala Dr, Richmond VA) & ICVA (1241 Buford Rd, North Chesterfield VA) will be holding prayers.

2017 Upcoming Events

AUG 28
MSA General Body Meeting
Mon 8 PMWest Grace North at VCU · Richmond, VA

MSA Welcome Week
Aug 28 – Sep 1Muslim Students Association at VCU · Richmond, VA
MSA Game Night
Tue 8 PM1200 W Marshall St, Richmond, VA 23220-3024, United States

To contact the VCU-MSA join us on facebook at

The Hajj..The Journey of a Lifetime

The Hajj ( Arabic: حَجّ‎‎ Ḥaǧǧpilgrimage“) is an annual Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca, the most holy city for Muslims, and a mandatory religious duty for Muslims that must be carried out at least once in their lifetime by all adult Muslims who are physically and financially capable of undertaking the journey, and can support their family during their absence. It is one of the five pillars of Islam, alongside Shahadah, Salat, Zakat, and Sawm. The Hajj is the largest annual gathering of people in the world. The state of being physically and financially capable of performing the Hajj is called istita’ah, and a Muslim who fulfills this condition is called a mustati. The Hajj is a demonstration of the solidarity of the Muslim people, and their submission to God (Allah). The word Hajj means “to intend a journey”, which connotes both the outward act of a journey and the inward act of intentions.

The pilgrimage occurs from the 8th to 12th (or in some cases 13th) of Dhu al-Hijjah, the last month of the Islamic calendar. This year the Hajj is being
observed on Thursday, August 31st, (Dhul Hijjah 9, 1438) with the Eid ul Adha, The Day of Sacrifice being celebrated on Friday, Sept 1st (Dhul Hijjah 10, 1438).

Because the Islamic calendar is lunar and the Islamic year is about eleven days shorter than the Gregorian year, the Gregorian date of Hajj changes from year to year. Ihram is the name given to the special spiritual state in which pilgrims wear two white sheets of seamless cloth and abstain from certain actions.

(exerpt from WikIpedia-Hajj)