>Ifrah Majeed has reacted with the same hope and relief as many young Americans following the death of Osama bin Laden.
Only the Albion College junior is a practicing Muslim American.
“When I first heard the news, I was really glad we finally got him and it was basically a period of reflection for me,” said Majeed, the executive board member of Albion’s Muslim Student Association. “As a Muslim American we welcome the justice for 9/11 and we hope this will bring some sort of relief for the families.”
She said there “was a lot of ignorance” regarding the Islamic faith in the U.S. when the World Trade Center towers fell, but she believes most American’s understand bin Laden’s ideologies were “completely incompatible” with the religion.
“Basically I was just talking with all my friends from every walk of faith today and it doesn’t matter what religion we are, we all feel we should feel happy about this because a terrorist is gone,” said Majeed, who was a sixth-grader when the attacks took place.
Albion College Chaplain Dan McQuown said bin Laden’s death is essentially a bookend to a chapter in the lives of many students he works with.
“Osama bin Laden has played a very big role for them, but I think they have grown accustomed to the world and America not being 100 percent safe and this doesn’t automatically now make us safe,” he said. “It just provides closure for a really sad story they had to live through when they were in second-grade, third-grade, whatever grade.”
Albion’s interfaith community is planning a commemorative prayer service in September for the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks with a keynote address from former student Ahmed Chaudhry, a Muslim who was born in Pakistan and moved to Michigan in 1994.
“Even if we don’t agree sometimes, we respect each other and Albion is a great place to be,” Majeed said.
As published in the Jackson Citizen Patriot on May 4, 2011