Sabri Husibi is a former Muslim who recently spoke at a gathering for the Tulsa Atheists (Oklahoma).
He became an atheist at a young age when, while attending Quran school (to become an imam), he discovered he no longer had faith in the religion.
“The more I learned, the more paradoxes I saw,” he said.
Husibi said his rejection of Islam was cemented during mandatory military service in the Lebanon civil war in which more than a million people died, a war he says was religiously motivated.
After becoming an atheist, Husibi felt a sense of relief “that these silly stories cannot control me anymore,” he said.
He said he loves the freedom of American society and the respect and understanding of the people.
Husibi also realized that the Quran was written by men, not God. Just like the Bible. And every other “sacred” text.
Sounds like a kind, rational, decent man.
Which must explain why he’s now getting death threats from the Muslim community.
It’s serious and it’s frightening:
Husibi, who has an unlisted telephone number, said he received about 30 calls Saturday from people who were cursing him, calling him a traitor and threatening him.
Most were foreign-born, Tulsa-area Muslims whom he knows, he said. He also received angry calls from friends and relatives in Syria.
One caller, whom Husibi would not identify, said that if he spoke at the meeting and said anything against Shariah (Islamic law), he would be killed.
Another caller offered Husibi’s young Muslim wife $10,000 to leave him and return to her native Syria, he said.
“Someone from Tulsa called my 76-year-old mother in Syria and said, ‘You’re not going to see your son anymore,’ ” he said.
The original article came out on Saturday, in anticipation for the Sunday talk. The organizer of the Tulsa Coalition of Reason offered to cancel the talk in the wake of threats.
The courageous Husibi refused the cancellation. He still refuses to silence himself:
On Tuesday, a clearly shaken Husibi asked that any future articles emphasize that he is not attacking Islam alone but all religions, including “fundamentalist Christians like Timothy McVeigh and fundamentalist Jews who kill Muslim children in the Gaza Strip.”
He said Tulsa Muslims are awaiting an apology from him.
“I won’t apologize,” he said. “I’m not going to be a chicken. This is my right, to give my point of view.”
I spoke to Husibi via email. His English isn’t perfect but it’s very clear what he’s saying.
He verified those threats mentioned in the article and added that his brothers are now denying they know him (whether out of fear or shame, I don’t know). He’s lost his friends and relatives in a very short amount of time. He’s still getting threats. He worries someone is going to shoot him. It doesn’t help that he recently had open heart surgery…
I urged him to go to the police. He told me he would do so today.
Hopefully, they can investigate the people making the threats and offer some protection for the time being.
(Thanks to Richard for the link)