9/11 recognized amidst Ramadan

September 11, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
In the South Bay, September 11th was recognized in two very different ways. These past eight years have not been easy for many in the Muslim community.

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"As everyone knows, today is 9/11," says Zahra Billoo from the Council on American-Islam Relations.

There's no mistaking the significance of this date. It changed Americans and Muslim-Americans as well.

"There are definite still instances of hate post 9/11, eight years later," says Billoo.

Civil rights attorneys spoke frankly to Muslims Friday night about knowing their rights in this post 9/11 era. Muslims, nationwide say they've been harassed, threatened, and mistreated by law enforcement.

"It's very possible for it to happen to me, so I want to be prepared," says Sarah Hararah from Fremont.

"It is very regular that I am stopped at the airport, that I am pulled aside for a pat down, even before I've made it through the metal detector," says Billoo.

While similar stories of profiling floated through this room in Santa Clara, attorneys gave everyone the same advice.

"Do not answer any questions without an attorney present," said an attorney.

There were lessons many Muslims say they didn't need to learn before September 11, 2001. Meantime, in Campbell, different life lessons are taught.

This year, Sept. 11 came during Ramadan, which is meant to be a time for reflection. Friday night, Muslims did just that, but with members of the Christian faith as well.

"This is the high holy days for the Muslims and it's also a very sensitive day now for Americans so again, a great opportunity for America to learn more about the Middle East," says Charlie Slayman from San Jose.

Muslims and Christians broke bread together and just talked about their experiences, their religions, and moving forward after a terrorist attack.

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