Conejo Valley stands with mosque

Protestors gathered at the Islamic Center of Conejo Valley on Feb. 5 listen to one of the many speakers that took the stage at the rally. These speakers included U.S. Representative Julia Brownley, California Lutherna University professor Desta Goehner, and Imam Ahmed Patel from the Islamic Center of Conejo Valley.

Protestors gathered at the Islamic Center of Conejo Valley on Feb. 5 listen to one of the many speakers that took the stage at the rally. These speakers included U.S. Representative Julia Brownley, California Lutherna University professor Desta Goehner, and Imam Ahmed Patel from the Islamic Center of Conejo Valley. Rhea Zaib/with permission

A peaceful rally was held outside the Islamic Center of Conejo Valley on Feb. 5. People of all religions and ethnicities gathered to support the mosque amidst the recent political turmoil.

Around 300 people lined along the sidewalks holding signs and chanting passionately as cars passed by in support of the mosque. The signs varied from “DUMP TRUMP” to “HONK FOR PEACE.” On this day, the divides between race and religion vanished and the unity spurred by president Donald Trump’s travel ban brought the community together.

“I felt like I was a part of something bigger. I was protesting something that was unfair against people who have never done anything, and fighting for what I believe,” Maya Patel, freshman, said.

Patel joined the rally as a result of a spontaneous decision to stand with her community after she drove by and saw the gathering

Unlike Patel, Mohamad Rayshouny, sophomore, came to the rally with plans to support his mosque..

“My local mosque informed me and my family that there was a rally going on, and I was very excited to be part of it,” Rayshouny said.

“I met so many new people from other religions, such as rabbis and priests of churches and temples nearby the mosque,” Rayshouny said. He believed that rallying with people made a difference in our society that day.

American flags waved over the heads of the protesters that filled the parking lot of the Islamic Center of Conejo Valley on Feb. 5. Signs of protest dotted the crowd, including one that read "NO MUSLIM BAN NO BORDER WALL OUR CITIES STAND TALL."

American flags waved over the heads of the protesters that filled the parking lot of the Islamic Center of Conejo Valley on Feb. 5. Signs of protest dotted the crowd, including one that read “NO MUSLIM BAN NO BORDER WALL OUR CITIES STAND TALL.” Rhea Zaib/with permission

Another member of Conejo Valley’s Muslim community, Ibrahim Syed, sophomore, also participated in the rally. He is very active in the mosque and has participated in other food drives and rallies in the past.

“It felt great being part of the rally because of all the work I have dedicated to the mosque. It was amazing seeing almost 300 people standing with us since last rally we only had about 100 people who attended,” Syed said.

People of all religions wait in uneasy anticipation for future actions from the presidential office. However, the rally and the community support displayed brought hope to many people. Everyone stood as one on that day.  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *