“The first time was in Congress, in fact I myself was surprised because many people stunned that I was the first Muslim in there,” said Ellison, a member of Democrats who have served in three rounds in the U.S. Parliament, as quoted by CNN.
“But someone said to me,” Look at Keith, think there used to be a bloody Japan entered Congress just six years after Pearl Harbor, this is certainly a newsworthy story. ”
Minnesota state representative was first elected in 2007. He voiced a growing population in the state of the northern region.
Elisson has now become a congressman for three years representing the fifth district of Minnesota.
Although Ellison’s status as the first Muslim to Congress are largely unknown, but few know that he was born of Catholic family in Detroit and raised and educated in Catholic schools.
“Now I can say first that I feel is just ritual and dogma,” said Ellison. “Of course it was not bank on the fact of Catholicism, but the reality in which I live. So I lose interest and stop visiting religious kegiataan unless requested.”
Was educated at Wayne State University, Detroit, Ellison claimed to start looking for something else.
Without exposing the details of what makes her attracted to Islam, he mentioned that he was motivated by a multinational society.
“At that time I really want to see and hear how the real story of someone who experienced the change of belief. Because I do not,” he said.
“I investigate and it has an effect for the inner me, inspire me and also the feeling of wonder and bewildered. After that I became a Muslim. From that time until now Muslims are always perfect for me.”
Faces many hurdles in his political career as a Muslim, did not make Ellison thinks changing his faith. “My belief and my identity is Muslim. I never saw it as something burdensome, as well as in the work,” he said.
“That’s just aspects of my life. The time at which we live and we must respond to the reality of the world where we are in it,” Ellison said philosophizing.
Not only constraint, but also recognition. Ellison felt that keyakinanny has turned it into a national figure for Muslims, especially the U.S.. “Outside of a desire, I became like a symbolic figure,” he said.
“I always called my best to stay away from all the smells of the symbolic. But when it ends in that position, why not harness it? Why do not I use to help people shoulder to shoulder together?”
Although so far he merged to secure his political career, Democrats acknowledged that his political opponents often use his faith as a congressional election campaign issue. “I would warn them (opponents) to be careful that it does not work. People do not necessarily keep that kind of hatred,” he said.
“If you come and say, ‘Pick me because Ellison is Muslim and I am not,’ then nine out of ten voters will surely see it as an absurdity, that’s what happened.”
However, such campaigns did not hurt him. “In fact I feel sorry for people who use way before.”
No official data how many Muslims in the United States, because the national census, religion is not included in the list to be filled, but is expected to Muslims in that country reached 6-8 million.
Ellison has always emphasized in its mission to use faith as a liaison in a cross-community confidence in the U.S.. “Faith in every human being should be a bridge to connect, instead of forming a wall,” he said.