Mosques in California have been at the receiving end of a lot of hate crime, more so since Donald Trump won the elections.
A group of college students, with the best of intentions and hearts of gold, are just such a bunch. They have taken upon themselves to counter anti-Muslim sentiment: through love letters.
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"My friends and I have done interfaith work in Southern California for quite some time now, and we found this attack on our community to be a direct attack on us and the integrity of our work," Tahil Sharma, a 24-year-old from Claremont and an interfaith activist born to Sikh and Hindu parents who conceived the project says. Sharma along with Vanessa Oceguera and Mariela Martinez came up with the idea to do something to fight off the racial hatred and intolerance.
"We come from different backgrounds ourselves. We are all millennials. I am Hindu and Sikh; my colleagues are atheist and Christian," he added.
Soon, the project that started from Southern California spread as far as New York, Mexico, Canada, Morocco, and even South Korea.
Perturbed like most Muslims and minorities in the U.S., Sharma and his friends were one of the youth that started looking up to Khizr Khan, the Gold Star father of Captain Humayun Khan, who became a viral sensation after speaking at the Democratic National Convention about the death in Iraq of his Army captain son.
Khan has now made it his mission to inspire hope in young Muslims.
Tahil Sharma, , also met and sought guidance from him.
He asked Khan how Muslims and non-Muslims could work together to combat bigotry and hate.
Khan suggested he saw it as the job of Muslims to build ties to other religious communities. “If you come to my home, you’ll see a picture of Guru Nanak on my desk, you’ll see a copy of Gita,” he replied. "Our creator has created all of us."