Hate-Crime Documentary ‘American Mosque’ to Premiere on PBS During Ramadan
Follows story of first mosque destroyed by arson in U.S. and the community’s multi-faith efforts to rebuild it
| Truth Revolt |
An American Mosque, a documentary on the first mosque destroyed by arson in the U.S., will be broadcasted on hundreds of PBS stations nationwide via World Channel on July 6, during Ramadan.
The film centers around the 1994 hate-crime burning of a newly built mosque in Yuba City, California, and its subsequent rebuilding with multi-faith support. Producer David Washburn – filmmaker, interfaith activist and SFSU fellow – presents American Mosque as an inspirational film about what makes America truly great: speaking out against injustice, banding together, and resisting the “otherness” that creates the type of division that led to the destruction of the mosque.
The documentary’s website describes the film as a call to resist “negative stereotypes of all American Muslims” and a reminder of the importance of the right to worship, especially as mosque projects “are increasingly scrutinized around the country”:
Most of the film’s characters are second-generation Americans who speak passionately about hard work and anticipation, heartbreak and fear, triumph and hope. Members of other faiths echo their words, expressing compassion, support, and a shared desire for justice in the wake of the arson. Although deeply saddened, the community’s spirit was not shaken. They wanted to show that all Americans, including Muslims, are entitled to a religious sanctuary and the right to practice their faith openly. The community re-doubled their efforts and constructed a new mosque by 2000. For everyone involved, this film is a tribute to their struggle.
In a broader sense, this documentary resists negative stereotypes of all American Muslims, gives value to every house of worship, and imagines a more tolerant America. As mosque projects are increasingly scrutinized around the country, An American Mosque tells a timely story that all Americans should see to better understand why our Constitutional right to worship needs to be upheld everywhere.http://www.truthrevolt.org/news/hate-crime-documentary-american-mosque-premiere-pbs-during-ramadan