Imam Runs to Become Member Of Detroit City Council

July 31, 2009

Author: David Grant


Wire Service: AP

City Council candidate Imam Abdullah el-Amin says he came to the Islamic faith because "it let me know about the human being."

It's this perspective - regardless of its religious origin - that he thinks is sorely needed on a council riddled by scandal.

"We don't need people of a particular religion," said el-Amin, but rather council members who "respect the Creator enough that when they are in office, they won't allow themselves to disrespect the Creator."

One of 167 candidates running in Tuesday's nonpartisan primary for City Council, el-Amin is the founder of Detroit's 800-member Muslim Center, home to a diverse group of black, Asian and Arab Muslims. He's the first imam in recent memory to run for City Council. And because of his ecumenical outlook and long history of community activism, many political observers believe he has a shot.