How to Control or Capture Muslim Organizations in the U.S.? A Beginner's Guide
Muslims worldwide have devised and improvised methods to capture or remain in power in organizations created in the name of God with public donations. In some places, the power moves from father to son or family to family members. In other areas, it revolves around an oligarchy. Some try to use force to take control or retain their power, and some manipulate facts to advance their claim. One may find examples where Muslims practice genuine democratic principles to live their faith in organized Muslim work. They are primarily in smaller and rural communities with a clear vision of the work they intend to do.
In the U.S., some Muslim individuals and groups have almost perfected a methodology to capture or keep control of outfits established to serve Muslims.
Individuals establish centers and organizations without public funds to serve a community. They do not fit the following description. But there are not many.
It is how some centers and organizations built with public funds in the U.S. operate.
A few Muslim families come together to help build a center. They raise funds from their friends to complete the project. They run it voluntarily, focussing on their needs.
Someone decides that he is best suited to run the Center.
He identifies individuals from his ethnicity, race, or ideological group to support him.
Together, they start recruiting individuals supportive of them to become members of the Center.
One or more than one person pays the membership dues of the recruited people, convinced that he is making a home in the heavens.
They ensure most of their supporters decide to take over the organization.
They nominate a few loyal supporters from amongst them to contest elections.
Once elected, they change the by-laws to secure their majority.
In the next election, they appoint their election Commissioner and nominate the contestants if they are unhappy with the previous ones.
But they ensure they issue a general notification to all members to contest elections if they are interested.
With the help of their appointed commissioners, they eliminate contestants who do not reflect their ideas on technical grounds.
They ensure that only their nominated ones contest and win the election.
On election day, they bring members never seen in the Masjid in such gatherings.
They also bring the proxy votes of non-attending members.
They ensure that the membership of such voters is current.
They repeat this ritual yearly until convinced that their majority is unchallenged.
The cycle may come to an abrupt end if the initiator dies without a known successor.
The initiator may be an individual or member of an organized group keen to take control of the Center.
Often, the initiator comes from an organized group keen to expand its influence.
Such organizations receive through cash, check or credit, or in kind. The one who gets the money is the only one who knows it. Depositing it in the organization's account is discretionary. Funds come for Zakat, sadaqat, or special projects. The Board uses them at its discretion, assuring the public that Allah is multiplying their rewards in Janna.
Please remember, the legitimacy to every action comes from quoting a Quranic verse or a hadith or sayings of a scholar.
Why do they play these games in Islamic centers, misusing their religion? They are divine sanctuaries and houses of honesty and integrity.
They can join any other social group to do all this. The answer is simple. They worship their egos and are power-hungry. Or they believe that they are the only honest and truthful people. Otherwise, divine guidance is clear on how to run community affairs.
As mentioned above, the practices have kept hundreds of capable people from offering their services to the community because they know the power grabbers would destroy them if they raised their voices. It is easy to destroy the reputation of anyone. People do not usually verify. Or Sometimes, facts are concocted.
Yet, the power-hungry people feel that even God cannot control them in their actions.
Let us hope that we develop a sense of responsibility towards our creator and his creation, and work for the establishment of a community that upholds the truth. In our commitment to faith, glory comes only when we are sincere to our Creator and His creation.