Today, all the Facebook statuses of my politically active American friends are encouraging everyone to go out and vote. "Make your voice count!" They say. And most of them are recommending the Democrats.
It's not hard to see why someone would prefer the Democrats. The alternate (Republican/Tea Party) are vehemently anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant, anti-racist by their acts, views and opinions. America today is a sad country, and a terrible place to be a Muslim. But, and this is a strong reason, are you really making your voice count if you are voting a Democrat, just to stop the Republicans?
In Nevada, for example, you have to vote for Harry Reid, the Democrat leader, who said publicly he does not want the mosque in New York to be built. And I ask, what is the difference between him and a Republican?
In fact, the very pathetic condition of the US political system is that you really have only two choices, Democrat and Republican, who are not really very different. And for Muslims, the outlook is worse. The Republicans hate you and will never benefit you, while the Democrats know you will vote for them regardless, and therefore doesn't court you for support.
So, if you really want to make your voice count, make an honest vote. If your Democrat candidate has truly spoken out supporting Muslims and supporting issues you care about, then vote for him (or her). However, if your Democrat has also joined the Republicans in opposing Muslim interests, or not taken any action on issues you care about, don't vote for that candidate. Make the candidate feel (write a letter or email) as to why you did not vote for that person. The candidates should know that your vote has to be earned. There's a bunch of other candidates running (who may not have a chance of winning) but would appreciate your support (and if there's no one, don't vote).
You as a Muslim are not responsible for changing the world for the better, you as a Muslim are only responsible for making an effort to do so. Success (and failure) comes from Allah.
Don't fear the Republicans. They can do what they want, they can plan what they will, Allah is the Best of planners. Muslims have been there long before them and Muslims will be there long after they are burning in Hell.
And, in case they really take America down the drain, you can always move to Canada. We have a real political system. And health care.