Who would've thought that an imam in a Western society has to endure so much hardship? The imam not only has to guide his people with sound judgements, but has to especially endure the difficulties in a post 9/11 society.
An imam in the Western community is not just a leader of his people but also a councilor, a teacher, a matchmaker, a husband, a father, a symbol of hope and, best of all, the righteous path which bridges the Islamic beliefs with the Western culture. It's amazing how much he endures and he's truly the champion amongst all religious leaders. I certainly have never seen any monk, pastor, or priest who is both a religious figure and also a marriage councilor at the same time.
With the increasing media coverage on Islam, we unconsciously become the victim of the vast Western propaganda and often turn a blind when it comes to Muslims. Most Muslims are decent human beings, just like you and me, and are actually friendly and kind at heart. They're just like the everyday Chrisitians, Catholics, Jews and Buddhists you meet at every street corner. The more you know them the more you feel comfortable around them.
We're all human beings and a family living under the same roof. Irrespective of the faith, we can all live in harmony if we just show a little bit of our altrustic side.