Shahla Khan Salter

Dear Mr. Ambassador: We Are Concerned About Egypt's LGBTQ Community

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 10.16.2014 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

On October 18, we shall be holding a peaceful demonstration outside the Embassy of Egypt in Ottawa to protest Egypt's degrading and dehumanizing treatment of sexual minorities. Egypt has shown a lack of compassion and respect for the basic human rights of some of its most vulnerable citizens.

Ordinary Muslims Part 2: The Cycling Cleric Riding for Our Hearts

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 11.02.2014 | Canada Impact
Shahla Khan Salter

Mohamad Jebara -- also known as The Cycling Cleric -- serves as Chief Imam at the Cordova Spiritual Education Center. Young, dynamic and married, with two children, his Friday sermons are filled with love and compassion for humanity and he ridicules the notion that God can be viewed as a "bogeyman." This Friday, September 5, Mohamad will cycle from Ottawa to Quebec City.

Ordinary Muslims Part 1: There Is No Islam In ISIS

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 11.02.2014 | Canada Politics
Shahla Khan Salter

Recent news that several young Canadian men, including two Calgary brothers, died fighting for ISIS has shocked Canada's Muslim community -- the vast majority of whom scoff at the notion that the terrorists who have overrun Syria and Iraq are acting upon authentic Islamic teachings, much less a compose a "caliphate."

If Muhammad Was Alive Today They Would Arrest Him Too

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 07.22.2014 | Canada Politics
Shahla Khan Salter

It may be a crime under shariah but it is the legend of Muhammad who befriended Christians, Jews and Pagans, gave women rights, never persecuted gays and lesbians and spoke out against the rich, established tribes of Mecca. Where would he be if he was alive today? According to shariah law, Muhammad would be in jail, labeled an infidel.

Will Arabia's Malcolm X Go Free?

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 06.25.2014 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

Co-founder of the Liberal Muslim Network in Saudi Arabia, Raif Badawi, has been in jail in Jeddah since June, 2012. His imprisonment and if he is executed, his death, would only prove what the Kingdom already knows, as captured in the words of the late, great Malcolm X that, "power in defense of freedom is greater than power in behalf of tyranny and oppression."

Fox News and a Few Conservative Muslim Leaders are Real Scrooges

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 02.16.2014 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

On December 6, Slate Magazine published an essay by Aisha Harris entitled, "Santa Claus Should Not be A White Man Anymore." In a response that went viral, Megyn Kelly of Fox News said: "For all you kids watching at home, Santa just is white..." Ironically, Kelly's intolerance, expressed during a season that ought to be filled with giving, love and acceptance, is nothing new. As a Muslim, it reminds me of those conservative Muslim leaders, on the same cold end of the Scrooge barometer as Kelly, who advise us Muslims that we better not wish anyone a Merry Christmas.

Meet the Woman Driving Change in Saudi Arabia

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 01.23.2014 | Canada Impact
Shahla Khan Salter

On Saturday, October 26, more than 60 Saudi women got behind the wheel and drove in Saudi Arabia to challenge the ban on women driving in that country. Some of them posted their videos on YouTube. Several people were detained and fined. Last week I interviewed another brave woman who drove on October 26, human rights activist and photographer, Samia El-Moslimany.

The Quebec Charter Will Ghettoize Muslims

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 09.11.2013 | Canada Politics
Shahla Khan Salter

The PQ is unable to distinguish between religious zealotry that overtakes the public sphere and individuals who, though they exhibit their faith publicly, continue to work peacefully, alongside their neighbours of other beliefs, without difficulty. Make no mistake -- everyone in Quebec will be affected by the Charter of "Values." The entire society will be subjected to change as a result. Do we want people to be forced to choose their faith over integration in the public sphere? Do we want "Muslim only" sections of cities? That will be the result of failing to allow the integration of visible religious minorities in the public sphere. It is apartheid.

Fox News and Saudia Arabia Have More in Common Than You Think

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 07.31.2013 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

Last Friday Dr. Reza Aslan was interviewed by Fox News on his recent book, Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth. Bigotry reigned as Green repeatedly asked Aslan why as a "Muz-lim" he would write a book about Jesus. Meanwhile, halfway around the world, another secular Muslim sat in a Saudi prison, awaiting his sentence. His crime? Attempting to liberalize religion in Saudi Arabia and criticizing religious police.

Wise Words From an Eight-Year-Old: "No More Hurting People. Peace"

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 04.21.2013 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

Martin Richard was eight years old. He was in the third grade. He was killed on Monday at the Boston Marathon, waiting at the finish line. Recently, his teacher, Lucia Brawley, released a photo of Martin holding up a sign he made in school. It said: "No more hurting people. Peace."

This Woman Risked Death to Go Topless

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 04.05.2013 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

A 19-year-old woman, named Amina Tyler, who lives in Tunisia, was threatened with stoning after she exposed her breasts in a photo she posted online, scribbling the words -- "my body belongs to me, and is not the source of anyone's honour" -- on her torso in Arabic.

Violence Against Women Does Not Discriminate

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 03.21.2013 | Canada Impact
Shahla Khan Salter

Within the last year tragedies of violence against women and girls have made headlines. Violence against women exists in places not only where the laws oppress us but also where they are supposed to protect us. It exists in the richest communities of the world and the poorest.

How to Fight Hate Without Becoming Hateful

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 02.06.2013 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

At Muslims for Progressive Values we at fight peacefully against those who call themselves Muslim and inflict crimes against humanity. The incitement of hatred, examples of which proliferate our society, does not help our cause, nor humanity as a whole. It does the opposite. Hatred begets hatred

Religious Rights Don't Trump Human Ones in Canada

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 12.02.2012 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

In Toronto, this past June, Faith McGregor, walked into the Terminal Barber shop owned by Omar Mahrouk and asked for a haircut. Mahrouk said his barber shop did not serve women. McGregor's decision to file a complaint against Mahrouk was the right one. This is something that should not happen here in Canada.

A Muslim Canadian and a Muslim American Talk Politics

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 11.04.2012 | Canada Politics
Shahla Khan Salter

The American Presidential election between Republican Candidate, Mitt Romney and incumbent Democratic Candidate President Barack Obama, takes place in only a two days on November 6, 2012. Its outcome may result in a remarkably different future for many. What happens in the U.S. affects us all -- both here in Canada and overseas. As a Muslim Canadian woman, I wonder, what is on the mind of a Muslim American woman right now?

No, Banning "Innocence of Muslims" Is Not the Solution

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 09.17.2012 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

To my fellow Muslims -- the 99 per cent who are peaceful -- here is my message. Online articles, information and resources, including amateur video productions, are everywhere. "Policing" opinions on religious matters is unrealistic in most instances. But some of you say "Innocence of Muslims" is a special case and should be banned. Personally, I disagree. The video should not be banned, nor should any video that one finds disturbing because of its anti-Islamic, anti-Semitic, anti-Christian or anti-religious content. Why? For a number of reasons.

Saving Rimsha: Religious Intolerance is the Real Blasphemy

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 08.29.2012 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

An 11-year-old Pakistani girl with Downs Syndrome might be put to death for blasphemy. Killing people for expressing negative and/or dissenting views on religion, for burning Qurans, for writing letters -- is this Islam? No. In Islam, a law that penalizes a person for challenging or disparaging the religion -- is blasphemy itself.

Canada's No Safe Haven From Breivik-Style Hate Crime

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 08.15.2012 | Canada Politics
Shahla Khan Salter

Is domestic terrorism, instigated by white supremacists, such as Breivik, on the rise? Recently, more incidents of hate crimes are reported to be taking place, with alarming frequency. There have been at least seven reports of hate crimes targeting Muslims and mosques in the last 10 days in the United States. Here in Canada we look down at the U.S. and say, "well, everything is worse down there, more guns, more violence, more racism." Not so fast. According to Statistics Canada figures from 2009, the frequency of hate crimes are up.

Wisconsin Temple Shooting Proves that Hate has no Place in Religion

Shahla Khan Salter | Posted 08.06.2012 | Canada
Shahla Khan Salter

Yesterday in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, seven people were killed and a number injured, including a police officer, when a gunman, named Wade Michael Page stormed a congregation of five hundred people at an American Sikh gudwara. While we and other faith groups dug into our hearts in this manner, the Westboro Baptist Church representative Fred Phelps tweeted: "Beautiful work of an angry God who told Wisconsin to keep their filthy hands off his people." No. Before we are Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, B'hai, Jain, Zoroastrian, Aboriginal, Wiccan, Humanist and Sikh -- we are human. God only cares about the way in which we treat one another.