Wajahat Ali is a writer, lawyer, playwright, journalist, and Al-Jazeera TV host.
On Thursday, November 17th the Baker Ballroom was filled, with many attendees sitting on the floor due to the lack of seating. This attendance was instantly warranted when Wajahat Ali began talking.
Ali’s humor was equal to a stand up comic and his message resonated with everyone in the room. Humor was an important tool, especially when talking about such an issue as Islamaphobia.
Ali’s witty humor as well as his serious undertones were vital for getting the message across. His message was this. In order to fight Islamaphobia in the US, more Americans need to meet and talk to Muslim people.
He stated, “60% of Americans don’t know a Muslim”. Ali used a lot of great statistics like this one to paint a picture of the cause of the divide between cultures.
Ali also stated that the world has been portraying this phenomenon as Islam vs. the West, or the West vs. Islam. Ali argued that it was needed to break down this divisive barrier and instead begin to talk to and know our fellow human brothers and sisters.
It was easy to see as the lecture went on that every member of the audience had their ears pinned and ready to absorb the next great piece of knowledge. Here are some of the quotes that hit home from the presentation:
“The universe is made of stories, not atoms.”
“If you aren’t writing your story, it is being constantly written by others”
“Even if the Day of Judgment is around the corner, plant the seed.”
Lectures like this one are a true gift to be taken advantage of by every student. I would encourage people to attend these speeches due to the wealth of knowledge that these presenters bring to our great university.