Flying to Louisville will be different now.
You would be landing at the newly re-named Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport in recognition of the Louisville native Muhammad Ali, the greatest boxer of all times when he fought and one of the finest human being always. Recognition came to him late and hesitatingly, but when it did come, it so became him that he once said “I am the greatest. I said that even before I knew I was.”
Muhammad Ali was a Muslim and an American who lived in both worlds, a task that challenges a growing community of young and upcoming Muslims. To find the balance between faith and function, between tradition and tactic, confronts them as they navigate the road to their own greatness. And succeed they do, judging from the growing number of high achievers in all field, politics included.
Much has been said about two Muslim women claiming their place in the U.S. House of Representatives. Behind them is a determined cohort of elected and appointed officials testing the waters or dipping their toes to move to the next level. One such aspirant, just for example, is Dr. Ibraheem Samirah, a Northern Virginian dentist with a tale that deserve to be told.
“Growing up in the Chicago suburbs, Ibraheem enjoyed a typical American childhood – watching basketball in the bleachers, riding bikes with his brothers…and then getting around to his homework that all changed in middle school when his father traveled to Jordan to care for his ailing grandmother and was denied re-entry to the U.S. by the Bush Administration. Ibraheem’s family uprooted and relocated to stay together and fight for his father’s reinstatement. It took ten years, but they won. Ibraheem worked hard in school so he could one day return to the country he loved. He attended American University and went on to Boston University for dental school. Today he runs a community based dental practice serving patients throughout metro DC.”
Ibarheem Samirah has just won nomination of the Democratic party against three other candidates for a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates representing Virginia’s 86th district.
Persistence with conviction made impossible possible, just as Muhammad Ali had said “Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.”