Told to Apologize for Being Muslim
Last week, the Islam Channel featured me in a piece about being told to apologize for being Muslim. I had to choose between my career and my religion.
I’m Shereen Kassam – comedian, podcaster, speaker, actress, ex-radio host, and entrepreneur.
I started this podcast for two key reasons
- As a woman of color in the entertainment industry, I felt I didn’t have any mentors to turn to for advice and mentorship. I started this podcast to provide informal mentorship and strategies to win to other creatives, such as myself, who need a mentor
- I wanted a voice after I had to leave the radio.
Now why did I leave the radio?
Well – The Islam Channel actually did a piece on this last week – Stand up comedian told to apologize for being Muslim. I am going to play the audio for those of you haven’t seen it….if you want the video you can check it out on my Instagram page – funnybrowngirl or Islam Channel’s IG which is IslamChannelTV. Shout out to Ravit Anand for a wonderful piece. Or on Youtube!
It has over 23,000 views across social media so please keep sharing it!
That night and the following days had a profound impact on me. After that night, I get nervous every time I have a comedy show at a new club or a new area, because I don’t know who is going to get upset that I’m Muslim.
What I learned from this situation? Sometime you will get opportunities that sound amazing, and it will take everything you have to walk away. But you have to believe something better is around the corner.
I learned that God’s plan involves me being surrounded by people who support me, who lift me up, and who fight for me. That night at the show, and the days following, I realized the universe had a bigger calling for me. It reminds me of a quote that I love – if your path is difficult it is because your purpose is bigger than you thought.
And that’s why I stated this podcast. I wanted to do more with my voice and with my talent. I wanted to reach more people and make a difference.
The last question I ask during all my interview is = what advice do you have for creatives on their journey?
My advice –
We live in a weird time right now. Everyone is under attack across the globe. No matter your gender, your sexuality, your race or your religion. Look at us here in the USA – we are a divided nation. I’ve been dealing with this since I was a child – the hateful comments, the racial slurs, the death threats. But you know what hurts me the most. It’s not when some ignorant person comes at me with ugly words, it’s when people, many times people who call themselves my friends, stand by and do nothing. They just stand there. That’s what hurts.
I urge you all be kind to each other. If you see something happening that’s wrong, speak out. Say something. That’s the only way we can heal as a world and learn to love each other.
I want to meet you all and answer any questions you have for me. his Sunday, November 3pm Eastern Time (New York time) I’ll be on Instagram live with some wings and answering questions. Feel free to send them in advance to hi@funnybrowngirl or any social media platform @funnybrowngirl. Oh and follow me on Tik Tok @funnybrowngirl.
Next week we will continue to discuss side hustles and how to make money from your creative passion.
With that, go flex your creative muscle and keep winning.
Who am I?
I’m Shereen Kassam, the host of Creative Breakthrough and internationally touring speaker and comedian. If you are looking for a speaker to talk on topics including creativity, branding, or work life balance, get in touch! I am also open to being guest on your podcast, TV show, or other medium.
Email: hi @ funnybrowngirl.com