South Students Help Lead March Against Islamophobic Rhetoric


Photo Credit: Eli Shimanski A banner being supported by Ahalm Mussa. Aishah Mohammad and Ndolo Elate, three South students that participated in the march.

 This Saturday a group of over 150 activists marched and chanted up to the doorstep of the Republican Party headquarters in protest of Islamophobic rhetoric that the party has supported. Many South students played big roles at the event as speakers or leaders in the march.

The event started at around 12:55pm when people started to congregate in front of the May Day Bookstore, holding signs and yelling chants that criticized the Republican candidate and his anti-muslim comments.

By 1:30 speakers began taking the stage, talking about the anti-extremism policy CVE which targets somali communities in Minnesota. One of the speakers was Aishah Mohamed, a Sophomore who gave a speech that condemned the arrests of six Somali men that were accused of supporting ISIS. “Since our prophet was a man of peace, his followers can not be people of violence” she said.

Photo Credit: Eli Shimanski Aishah Mohame giving a speech on the effects that CVE has had on the Somali and Muslim community.

CVE stands for Countering Violent Extremism and was introduced in 2011 to deter people from joining violent extremist groups by bringing together community groups. Since being introduced into the Minneapolis area, it has been called out for discriminating against Somali and Muslim communities by monitoring them and increasing racial policing.

At 2:15 the crowd began moving down Cedar avenue as they continued to chant and hold signs. On their journey they were meet with many honks of solidarity from divers on the road as well as applause from passing civilians. The energy of the crowd grew as they made they’re way to the Republican headquarters.

The marching chanting down Franklin Ave on there way to the Republican headquarters
Photo Credit: Eli Shimanski The marching chanting down Franklin Ave on their way to the Republican headquarters in Minneapolis.

When they arrived there more speakers took the microphone and continued to defame the Republican Party. After about 10 minutes there, they turned around and took an alternate route back to May Day Bookstore, gaining more people as they walked through the streets.

Back at May Day spoken word artists gave performances and organizers of the event gave information on how to find future events before the crowd dispersed at 3:00.

Afterwards in an interview with Aishah Mohamed she said “we set the goal for a lot of things today” and that “Muslim and non-muslim we can still come together and show that islam has nothing to do with violence”

Another South student, junior Ahalm Mussa also had favorable comments about how the event went, saying that it was “most definitely” a success. Mussa also added that “our community is under attack so I think that this message showed that we are united and we can stand up to all of this”.