Muslim Gym-Goers Give New Meaning to Spinning Class

Mary Katharine Ham
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Posted: Dec 05, 2006 3:38 PM

So, if I go to Bally's this afternoon and try to do my daily Bible-reading in a spinning class, should I have the right to ask the manager to chill with the strobe lights and turn down the "She's a Maniac?"

It's ludicrous. When you do inappropriate things in inappropriate places, people's reactions to your inappropriate behavior are not necessarily bigoted. They're not always anti-Muslim. Sometimes they're anti-silly.

To make a gym perfectly suitable for prayer at all times--five times a day, even-- would make it something other than a gym, and the owners have no obligation to run anything other than a gym.

Imad Hamad, regional director of the American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee:

"It's OK for a Christian fellow or a Jewish fellow to pray, and it would be regarded highly and respected. When it comes to a person of Muslim faith, especially if a woman is wearing the head cover or a man with a typical clergy outfit, yeah, it is becoming like something that is offensive to people and making them nervous."

Would it really be "OK" or "regarded highly" for me to pray at a public gym and expect not to be disturbed? Of course not. I'm free to give it a try, as are Muslims, but I shouldn't expect to be able to do it in peace. It's. a. gym. I daresay if it happened to me, there'd probably be plenty of lefty groups willing to jump in on the manager's side.

Speaking of doing inappropriate things in inappropriate places, check out the rules of "Flight Club," another fabulous video from Sout al Kuffar.