Islam’s Capacity to Empower

Given the recent attack in London — along with others, many would be highly suspicious of, if not downright hostile towards, any claims of Islam’s ability to empower those who have been downtrodden themselves. Quite the contrary, many view Islam as a corrupting force which prays on the poor and disenfranchised, of which then they all too often employ Islam as an irrational justification to mete our violence in response to perceived injustices. But it may surprise some, particularly American whites and Europeans, that Islam has a very different assessment in the black community. For many of us, even non-Muslim black folks, Islam is seen as redemptive, a system that has the solutions to our social, existential, and even civilizational conundrums. This was beautifully demonstrated by brother Ibn Ali Miller when he broke up two young men attempting to solve their disagreements through violence. He also gave a valuable critique against the voyeuristic technology culture that allows others to sit on the sidelines and gloat at the suffering of others. May Allah reward brother Ali and make him of the inheritors of Islam. An inspiration to us all.

وَنُريدُ أَن نَمُنَّ عَلَى الَّذينَ استُضعِفوا فِي الأَرضِ وَنَجعَلَهُم أَئِمَّةً وَنَجعَلَهُمُ الوارِثينَ

“And We want to empower those who were being oppressed in the land, to make them leaders, and to give them an inheritance in the earth.” Qur’an, 28: 5

Teens Carjack Lawyer – Man Dies

Car jacking

An 18-year-old Gary man was sentenced to six years on probation for carjacking a prominent Gary lawyer who died six months after the crime. Jerry Lee Tarver admitted he and co-defendant David Adam Watson, 17, carjacked Fred Work as he sat alone in his car on March 16. Court records indicate Work was sitting in his 2001 Lincoln listening to the radio in an alley behind his home when two males wearing masks walked up and ordered him out of his car at gunpoint. Tarver and Watson got into his car and took off after stealing his money and watch.

Tarver has agreed to cooperate in the prosecution of Watson, who appeared in court Monday for his initial hearing. Watson, who was 16 at the time, has pleaded not guilty. If Tarver fails his probation terms, which include that he obtain his GED, he will be sent to prison. The plea agreement, which was accepted by Lake Superior Court Judge Diane Ross Boswell last week, called for the dismissal of robbery and battery charges.

About five weeks after the carjacking, Watson was shot by Gary police Patrolman Terry Peck after he raised an AK-47 and ignored the officer’s commands to drop the weapon.

Watson was hospitalized in Indianapolis after the shooting. Work died Sept. 13 at age 75.

Man Stomped Into Coma

Police in suburban Philadelphia say two teenagers who didn’t like a man’s attitude stomped him so severely that a sneaker imprint was left on his face. Upper Darby Police Superintendent Michael Chitwood says the 34-year-old victim has been hospitalized in a coma. Chitwood says the victim got into a verbal altercation with the teens, who claimed the man disrespected them. Chitwood says the suspects robbed and stomped him, leaving a sneaker imprint on his face. Nineteen-year-old Jeremiah Alexander of Upper Darby and a 16-year-old female were charged with assault and robbery in the attack on Friday. Chitwood told The Associated Press on Saturday that both suspects remain in custody. It’s not clear if either has a lawyer.