Innovative upcoming online course on Islamophobia

A very interesting online happening is coming up soon: An online course on the rife (or should I say “ripe”?) phenomenon of Islamophobia and strategies for combating it.

It looks like a very timely and innovative initiative. I’m sure people from many walks of life would find this enlightening and helpful.  Please check it out and consider supporting it, as I intend to.

From the announcement that I received:

What must we know about Islamophobia? And how can we fight it?

Register now for The New McCarthyism:  Islamophobia, American Muslims, and the Progressive Response. Only $59 through August 7!

This is a three part teleconference course on how progressives and American Muslims can fight Islamophobia. With registration:

  • Listen live to the talks and participate in the Q-and-A’s- by phone or online.
  • A global course- Anyone in the world can participate!
  • Download and listen to the recorded talks and Q-and-A’s at any time.
  • Receive a Fighting Islamophobia resource directory.
  • Get a free copy of All American:  45 American Men on Being Muslim (offer available while supplies last; limited time only; shipping only to US addresses)

Go to for more details and to register.

Course schedule:

  • What is Islamophobia, and Why Should Progressives Care? (Live session July 22).
  • Islam and Democracy:  What American Muslims Believe (Live session July 29)
  • Interfaith 3.0 and 5 Things Progressives Can Do About Islamophobia (Live session August 5)

Live sessions on Sundays, 3 PM PST/6pm EST. All calls are recorded and downloadable each week. You do not need to be on the call to participate in this course.

About the instructor:  Jason Van Boom is a contributing author to All American:  45 American Men on Being Muslim (White Cloud Press, June 2012). He is the founder and original host of Islam and Authors, the first American program on new books about Islam and Muslims. An American Muslim with professional experience working for Muslim nonprofits, he is one of the first Muslims to be a professional historian of Christianity. Jason gives graduate level courses on Christian and Islamic history at Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California. He is a blogger at Huffington Post and Tikkun Daily, and a correspondent for ILLUME Magazine, an award winning media organization that covers news from an American Muslim perspective. Jason is co-founder and director of Nicholas of Cusa Institute, a think tank and academic research organization that specializes in issues of political and cultural identity.



  • Brad

    Will you also do a course on the centuries-long discrimination, torture and killing of non-Muslims in Muslim countries?

    • Svend White

      Actually, while I don’t idealize Muslims or Muslim cultures–Muslims are no more immune to hate or violence than anybody else–the Muslim world comes up okay in such comparisons. Ask a historian of anti-Semitism how hunk-dory things have been for Jews in the West for most of the last 2 millenia!

  • Abdul Nasser

    I updated the weblink to my website, which can be found under the section on Communication Chapter 26. I am an American Muslim and I think combatting Islamophobia is a waste of time. The American Government is a super structure that allows us to live our lives in peace. The problems we face from Islamophobia are real, but also, irrelevant to the problems facing Muslims around the world. I mean do you think Islamophobia is the reason Syria is a war zone?

    Chapter 45 Verse 17 of the Qur’an says: And gave them a clear exposition of Our laws.
    And they did not differ until after knowledge came to them,
    through mutual jealousies. Verily your Lord will judge between them
    on the Day of Judgment in what they differed about.

    Essentially saying, some people think they know it all. I personally think that people who say we should fight Islamophobia are no different than the Muslims I argued with in Las Vegas about supporting the protests in the Muslim World. What really happened? Even the so-called success story of Egypt showed that the Egyptian Military still runs the country. You have seen the news about Sinai?

    Anyways, that is my opinion.

    • Svend White

      Well, we are all certainly entitled to our own opinions, but I don’t see much question that Islamophobia is raging in some quarters of American society and causing a lot of harm and injustice to innocent people today, or that it is increasingly dumbing down our nation’s political culture and discouraging the emergence of balanced, long-term policies vis-a-vis American religious freedom and the Muslim world. Nor do I think that one’s opposition to prejudice and hate within one’s own society should be dependent on developments overseas. It’s either wrong or it isn’t.

      You observed that Muslims have it good in America. For the most part, I’d agree, but that doesn’t mean we should be complacent about real problems, nor should we forget that there are,sadly, growing numbers of people in American politics today who are working to change that fact.

      Finally, American Muslims have just as much right as anybody else to participate in the political process to protect themselves and get advocate their values. No one has any right to lecture us for asserting our rights as fellow citizens.

      As for the Arab Spring, it sounds to me like you’re viewing it through a rather simplistic and sensationalistic lens. The region has mostly been under dictatorial rule for half a century. How can you expect it to turn into Scandinavia overnight? OF COURSE there are going to be problems, some of them involving religious extremism, as this momentous political and cultural transition plays out.

  • Jay kactuz

    Rather than Islamophobia, perhaps you should look into a course on infidelophia. Better yet, teach that respect is a two way street. The problem is not non-Muslims – It is Islam and Muslims. What you call “Islamophobia” is nothing more than a very natural dislike of an ideology that discriminates against others and practices so much of the hate and violence in this world.

    Svend, as I told you years ago, there is no hope. Muslims will not acknowledge much less condemn the hate and violence in the Quran? Note also the total lack of honesty when it comes to Mohammad. Let’s not pretend that your own writings do not describe his endless wars on his neighbors. I won’t burden you with details but the hadith do not paint a nice picture of your dear prophet. Perhaps you might tell us why we should trust a people that love and respect a man that did so much evil, according to your own sources, and this is a man they consider a moral example? Perhaps, who knows, these things may explain the almost universal discrimination and violence against non-Muslims in Islamic societies? Do you think that the contempt for non-Muslims in the Quran has nothing to do with this attitude? Perhaps Quranic verses that teach to not be friends with non-Muslims (3:28; 5:51), to attack and kill others (2:286; 3:148, 47:35; 9:73; 9:123; 48:29), and that infidels are stupid and evil (3:110-111; 25:44; 8:55; 98:6; 2:171) are harmless sayings, with no consequence.

    If you want to end what you call Islamophobia, I suggest that Muslims take a hard, honest look at Islam and its teachings and then try the golden rule. This is, however, a waste of time. Muslims are never honest about Islam or their own actions, and so it becomes a matter of blaming others for everything that happens.

    directly from the pages of the Quran. 2. d The fact is that Muslims The o

    • Svend White

      Ah, a blast from the past. (JK and I used to debate on Usenet fora in the early days of the Internet.) I see you are still peddling prejudice for Christ.

      Setting aside your politically motivated misconceptions–the Quran by no means bans friendship with non-Muslims, but rather commonsensically warns Muslims against rather relying on enemies for protection; far from encouraging violence, it strictly limits violence, certainly more so than does the Hebrew Bible; all scriptures speak disparingly of those deemed to be willfully thrwarting God’s will the religion’s establishment , which is not the same as attacking all members of other religions–and momentarily accepting your demonizing take on Islam, you have to be pretty blind and/or inhumane not to admit that there is a lot of hatred directed at Muslims these days. Even if you’re right in your extremely negative assessment of Islam, the idea that this is all simply principled opposition based on facts is absurd and disengenous.

      Crawl back to your hole. I have better things to do than play whack-a-mole as you trot out these hackneyed fallacies and slurs.