2 readers online now  |  69 million page views

Ilhan Omar and Company, please don't call me brown

Reader comment on item: A Democratic Islam?
in response to reader comment: An invitation to Minnesota State Representative-elect Ilhan Omar

Submitted by Prashant, Aug 2, 2019 at 23:46

Dear Dr Pipes, When I immigrated to America some decades back, I found that the issue of race in the US was discussed in the context of the black and white colors of people's skin. Taking a leaf from Dr. MLK's book, I decided to like the content of a person's character as a better criterion for judging the person than the color of his/her skin. The color of my skin was closer to black than white but that did not matter because it had nothing to do with the character.

Most recently the color 'brown' is becoming a part of people's vocabulary. I am originally a Hindu from India. People from India hardly ever describe themselves as brown (at least in India). Both of our most prominent guy gods were dark in color and at least one of them had a light toned brother (so he was not dark). We never know what brown is. I think the repeated use of word 'brown' in the American racial narrative is popularized by Muslims. Arslan Ifthikar ("the Muslim guy" who pretends to be as as-cool-as-everyone-else), routinely uses the word 'brown' to describe Mulsims. Ilhan Omar and her ilk identify themselves as brown or sympathizers of brown people. Muslims probably want to isolate themselves away from the American mainstream (which is the group of people choose to like America irrespective of the color of their skin). And they want to divide the people along different lines and then create partnerships and sectarian lines. They want us to speak as brown people, black people, white people, as women, as Asians, as whatever. They want to include Indians like me into their roll call. I want none of that. Let me repeat: I want none of that.

So dear Ilhan Omar, when you talk about brown people, please leave me aside. On such occasions, I want to stand as far away from you as possible. I have no intention of creating a separate identity in America. I am different but I do not have a different identity. I do not like the idea of first doing self-discrimination and then crying wolf. There might or might not be islamophobia in the world but there is no indophobia. I do not want to be a part of your narrative. For the purpose of your discourse, I am not brown.

Submitting....

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Comment on this item

Mark my comment as a response to Ilhan Omar and Company, please don't call me brown by Prashant

Email me if someone replies to my comment

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

See recent outstanding comments.

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List
eXTReMe Tracker

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2020 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)