Wednesday, November 28, 2012


What About the Non-Spanish Speaking Latinos?

Alhamdulillah (All Praises to Almighty Allah) over the decade or so there have sprung up many dawah  groups (groups which invite to Islam) throughout the United States which focus on the Latino community. Many of these groups and organizations fashion themselves around teaching Islam to non-Muslims or new Muslims through the medium of the Spanish language. While there is a great need for such a demographic, there is also a large demographic of Latinos who either do not speak Spanish, are very poor in Spanish, are stronger in English, or are equally strong in both languages but prefer English over Spanish. Do you see where I am going with this?
         Nearly half (or more than half) of Latinos in the United States fall in this category. There are many Stateside Puerto Ricans (including NewYorkPuertoRicans), Chicanos, and other US-born or raised Latinos who fall in the this category. While many of the above-mentioned groups cater to a certain segment of the Latino community there is a whole demographic which is simply untapped. Certainly, there are many Latinos who are not immigrants and not children of immigrants. While they may be classified as Americans, they still may strongly identify with Latino culture and may fit in both categories. 
          Therefore, I am asking those established Latinos groups and organizations: "How will your efforts at Spanish language dawah benefit this segment of the Latino population?" Perhaps, there is not a plan to address that segment of the Latino population. Is it simply assumed that all Latinos are quite conversant in Spanish? InshAllah (Allah Willing) I wait to hear from you all and hear you ideas on this.

Khalil Alpuertorikani
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia