First major city votes to allow Muslim prayer call to be broadcast at all hours

Minneapolis residents will be serenaded with the exotic sound of the Muslim call to prayer after the city council unanimously voted to amend the city’s noise ordinance in order to allow it to be broadcast at high volume over loudspeakers in public areas throughout the entire day, the first major U.S. city to do so in a historic vote that took place on Thursday.

The traditional prayer call, known as the adhan or azan, is recited five times daily from dawn to nightfall through the entire year, and while Minneapolis mosques have broadcast the prayer call before, the previous version of the ordinance had prevented some early morning and late evening broadcasts, limiting the number of times that it could be heard to as little as three times a day.

(Video: YouTube/WCCO)

“Thursday’s vote, during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, marked the capstone of a years-long effort to allow more calls to be broadcast in Minneapolis, whose burgeoning population of East African immigrants has led to mosques dotting the landscape,” the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported of the unanimous vote that went down without any organized opposition.

Minnesota’s largest city, once one of the most wholesome all-American locales in the entire nation, has seen a dramatic shift in terms of demographics due to a decades-long influx of foreigners, particularly those emigrating from Muslim countries in the Middle East and Africa as well as the rise of a new breed of progressive-socialist politicians who replaced more traditional liberals in positions of influence, notably in local government where their disastrous policies have turned Minneapolis into the crime-ridden hellscape that was ground zero for the summer 2020 race riots that erupted after black career criminal and drug addict George Floyd met an unfortunate demise at the hands of local police while being arrested.

Muslim leaders rejoiced over the city council’s vote to end noise restrictions.

“The Constitution doesn’t sleep at night,” the executive director of the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) Jaylani Hussein is quoted by the Star Tribune after the vote, expressing optimism that the progressive officials’ move will show the rest of the world that “nation founded on freedom of religion makes good on its promise.”

“This is a historic victory for religious freedom and pluralism for our entire nation,” said Hussein. “We thank the members of the Minneapolis City Council for setting this great example, and we urge other cities to follow it.”

“Minneapolis has become a city for all religions,” said Imam Mohammed Dukuly of Masjid An-Nur mosque in Minneapolis, according to the Star Tribune, adding that the prayer’s message of  “Allahu akbar,” or “God is great” carries a message that goes beyond Islam.

“This change creates a consistent process that benefits all First Amendment-protected religious freedom,” said Aisha Chughtai, the city council member who introduced the change to the noise ordinance.

“Three years ago, city officials worked with the Dar Al-Hijrah mosque in the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood to allow the adhan to be broadcast outdoors five times daily during Ramadan. Prayers are said when light appears at dawn, at noon, at mid- to late afternoon, at sunset and when the night sky appears. In Minnesota, dawn arrives as early as before 5:30 a.m. in summer, while sunset at the solstice happens after 9 p.m.,” the Star Tribune reported. “The city allowed year-round broadcasts last year, but only between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. The city’s restriction had typically excluded early morning prayer and sometimes night prayer.”

The city’s left-wing Mayor Jacob Frey is expected to sign off on the measure next week.

 

Chris Donaldson

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