LGBTQ Muslim Americans are rarely represented in larger conversations about Islamophobia, homophobia, transphobia or other aspects of the oppression they face. The Muslim Youth Leadership Council (MyLC) addresses this erasure with a new illustrated resource guide for Muslim children learning to understand their sexuality and gender identities.
MyLC, a project of the youth development and reproductive rights organization Advocates for Youth, releases “I’m Muslim and I Might Not Be Straight: A Resource for LGBTQ+ Muslim Youth” today (November 1). The guide is the latest component of #MuslimAnd, MyLC’s weeklong campaign to combat Islamophobia and uplift Muslim Americans whose intersecting identities aren’t recognized in popular discourse.
“I’m Muslim and I Might Not Be Straight” features language guides, a list of other organizations working with LGBTQ Muslims, quotes from peers about their own journeys to self-understanding and more. Artist Arzu Haider’s illustrations of LGBTQ Muslims, representing various races and skin shades appear throughout the guide. All of the resources are geared towards the council and week of action’s overall goal of dispelling common stereotypes about Muslim Americans.
“ ‘I’m Muslim and I Might Not Be Straight’ will show young Muslims who are questioning their sexuality that LGBTQ+ Muslims exist,” MyLC coordinator Khadija Khan said in an emailed statement. “We are so often erased by both the Muslim and the LGBTQ+ community. Young people need to know that they have a future, and that they are allowed to be just as Allah made them.”
See more images from ”I’m Muslim and I Might Not Be Straight” below before reading it in full. Learn more about #MuslimAnd by following the hashtag on social media and looking at the campaign toolkit.
This week our Muslim Youth Leadership Council launched its first #MuslimAnd week of action. The week-long campaign is an effort to provide Muslim youth across the country the resources to dispel common assumptions and provide clear recommendations to combat rampant Islamophobia. pic.twitter.com/6kRqd7OewE— Advocates For Youth (@AdvocatesTweets) October 29, 2018
Join us today at 12 PM: Muslim Youth Leadership Council will be going live on our Facebook page with members discussing the lived struggles and joys of being #MuslimAnd queer in America. Image Description: Graphic image of two queer Muslim people holding each other. pic.twitter.com/3UlSCFBShQ— Advocates For Youth (@AdvocatesTweets) October 30, 2018
“Too often as Muslims, our identity, culture and beliefs are assumed for us. We refuse to let other people define our lived realities anymore. Islam is not a monolith and neither is being Muslim.”- @roojielicious #MuslimAnd https://t.co/JWlXG7H17m pic.twitter.com/XeDxI6TCyJ— Advocates For Youth (@AdvocatesTweets) November 1, 2018