Yasmine Mohammad is an author and human rights activist, advocating for the rights of those living under religious extremism. You wouldn’t think that would be controversial, but the extremism she focuses on is Islamic extremism, specifically the fundamentalism that has arisen in the Islamic world over the last several decades and imposed draconian rules on women. Because progressive norms in the west often now frame criticism of Islam as a form of bigotry, Yasmine, who considers herself an ex-Muslim, is now considered both a heretic of Islam and inconvenient social justice figure among western activists. She spoke with Meghan about this strange position and also shared her own story of growing up in a fundamentalist Islamic household and was being forced into marriage to a man who turned out to be a member of Al Qaeda. She also talked about what it’s like to be forced to wear the hijab as well the prevalence of practices like female genital mutilation in both the Islamic world and within immigrant communities in the west.
is the is the author of Unveiled: How Western Liberals Empower Radical Islam
and the founder of Free Hearts Free Minds
, which provides support for women—and men—who need help freeing themselves from the suppressions of religious extremism in the Islamic World.