Muslims On The March: Taking A Census Of Their Numbers In The United States!
Posted by Job on June 16, 2008
This can’t have anything to do with Barack Hussein Obama can it?
A team of Islamic advocacy groups and statistical organizations will start a nationwide census of American mosques this summer that organizers hope will paint a more accurate picture of the size and ethnic composition of U.S. Muslims.
One of the challenges will be finding all the venues where Muslims pray. Many Islamic communities do not have mosques but still meet for congregational prayers in private homes, businesses, university buildings and even some churches that have opened their buildings for Muslim prayers.
“This is very tough,” said Ihsan Bagby, an Islamic Studies professor at the University of Kentucky who is directing the study. “We will engage interviewers so they can diligently hunt for these less obvious mosques.”
The study is planned for release in early 2009.
The Council on American Islamic Relations released a similar study in May 2001 that counted 1,209 U.S. mosques and about 2 million Muslims associated with them. From that, the CAIR study extrapolated that there were between 6 million and 7 million Muslims in America.
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The 2001 study also found that South Asians comprised 33% of mosque attendance, African Americans 30% and Arabs 25%.
Several sects who identify themselves as Muslim but were excluded in the earlier study will be counted in the upcoming study, Bagby said, including the Ahmadiyya movement and the Nation of Islam.
According to the 2008 U.S. Religious Landscape Survey, which was released last February by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, Muslims comprise approximately 0.6% of the U.S. population — or about 1.82 million Muslims. Bagby said he believed the Pew figure was an “undercount,” attributed in part to a higher rate of refusal among Muslims to answer survey questions.
Other groups sponsoring the census include the Islamic Society of North America, the Muslim American Society, the Muslim Public Affairs Council, the Hartford Institute of Religion Research, and the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies.