The Prophet Mohammad on Oprah

I’m usually very impressed by IslamOnline and I still am, but sometimes some of the most absurd articles are posted up there (to say nothing of the numerous English typos that make it look unprofessional at times).

Case in point. Today I read an article about a “campaign” of sorts that was started (as I’m lead to believe) through the discussion boards at IslamOnline’s website. The purpose was to “vote in droves for our prophet on Oprah’s Web site to draw the world attention to our religion and the prophet of Islam”, according to a user named Hadeel.

This is in reference to…

“Oprah Winfrey announced a hero voting competition, she asked people to send true stories about a teacher, a firefighter, a parent or a relative, who has done something extraordinary for them.”

IslamOnline even sent an email to the show to ask for a comment and recieved none. It is mentioned of course in the article as if it were an insult that the Oprah Winfrey Show, the biggest talk show in the world with virtually millions and millions of viewers, would not reply personally to their email.

Let me list the reasons why I find this whole thing absurd:

1- First of all its not even a voting competition! It’s a webpage where you enter a story about a hero in your life that has helped you in some way or form. The page even has 2 long paragraphs detailing exactly what they’re looking for. They are looking for real life modern examples such as firefighters who save your life, neighbours who helped you out of a bind. Not a Prophet, or a historic figure!

2- Second this is in my opinion done as one of the latest reactions to “defend the Prophet”. I draw this conclusion based also on the fact the cartoon fiasco is mentioned in this very article.

Listen, when it comes to defending the Prophet pbuh, and when it comes to spreading awareness and knowledge about Islam, I am all for it. In fact I’m first in line. But there are channels of which to do it, ways and means of which to approach it. One one hand, going out to the streets and burning embassies or churches is definitely not one of them. And on the other hand flooding Oprah’s website with “I vote for the Prophet as my hero” contributions that are so obviously misplaced, is not the way either.

Please people, I implore you, think harder. Or just think. We have the perfect example right in our history: the Prophet pbuh sent emissaries all over the place with simple scrolls to present to kings and rulers, to call them to Islam. He warned them not to hurt even a tree on their journey for God’s sake! But note not only the non-violent method used here but the way in which the message was presented.

So please everyone…leave Oprah alone

(they should’ve never started airing her show on our tv’s)


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