Mohd Qayyoom of Jackson Heights wants to make April 26 a national holiday. That is the day he celebrates as the birthday of the Muslim Prophet of Mohammad.
The Islamic calendar is lunar so this birthday falls on a different day every year. He argues that by setting it at April 26, American Muslims would be able to celebrate the same time of the year.
Here is what Qayyoom has said:
“We want one day, an annual holiday like Christmas.”
“Everywhere I’m talking, they’re welcoming it.”
“Prophet Muhammad said, ‘I am not the prophet of only Muslims. I am the prophet of all human beings.'”
He further argues that by having a celebration that others can join would help to bridge the gap between the two factions and build a better understanding.
I don’t expect this to happen. Back in mid-2010, New York schools were trying to close school in observance of some Muslim holidays. Mayor Bloomberg shot that down despite being for the Ground Zero mosque.