Muslims/Arab pilots

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pilot773

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I have a question for all you pro pilots out there.

I am currently hold a ppl and am working full time as an IT geek while working towards the rest of my ratings. I plan to get my CFI and build up hours to get to the regionals and then a major (I hope and pray).

I also happen to be a Muslim.

My question for you folks is if you have any issues with Muslim students learning ho to fly with the goal of flying professionally. A similar question would be if you know any Muslim pilots working with you currently, and if so, do you have any issues with them?

Thanks, and look forward to any responses.
 

avbug

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I can't speak for others, but I don't care weather you're muslim, christian, hindu, agnostic, or drewed. I do care about attention to detail, judgement, systems knowledge, and an attitude of safety.

A pilot's religion is important to the pilot, but that's as far as it should go. I do believe that if you're a muslim, you should strive to be a good muslim; live according to your beliefs. If someone claims to be christian, then let them live closely with those ideals, and so on. Nothing is so disconcerting as one who professes one thing, and does another. Personally, I've flow with several arab muslims, and had no problem with them.

Certainly you have a stigma to overcome. The media hasn't helped. That doesn't mean you have any less right or responsibility, so make the best of it, and good luck to you!
 

Andy Neill

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pilot773,

I think if you an I were sharing a cockpit, a question I would ask during the course of the trip would be, "What do you see for Israel ten years from now?" When I asked that in grad school, the answer was "Israel will not be around in ten years." I would not feel very compfortable flying with one who held such beliefs. I would very much enjoy flying with one of ANY religion who adhered to the peaceful tenets of that religion.
 

aero99

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Avbug hit the nail on the head.

It will only be an issue if you make it an issue. Of all the people I ever managed or worked with, I always made it clear I could care less what they did in their off time. When they were working it was to be to the standards set forth with the job at hand.

Had an issue once with a gay employee. When I hired him, I couldn't tell or care if he was gay. After his first month he started "testing the water" with co-workers to see how they would respond and how liberal the staff would be. The only reason it was an issue was because he went around making it an issue. I had to sit him down and advise him that sexual orientation makes no difference as long as the job is being done.

He left a week later. Probally to go make it an issue somewhere else since we were not going to play.

Focus on your training and being professional. Good luck.
 

TurboS7

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It is very important to see people as individual's and that all men are created equal. We all have value, whether their values conflict with yours or not nothing makes us superior to one another. As an instuctor your job is to give information, encourage and teach to the best of your ability. That means that you must give the student your 100% best no matter what. Some students will be easy, some will be hard. There is no question that a farm kid from Kansas who has been driving combine's all his life will be easier to teach than someone from another background. We cannot discriminate no matter what we feel or how we have been violated. Every person in this great country has the right not to be discriminated against, that is what being in this wonderful country is all about.
 

ipilot

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I second the thoughts of all the people who replied on this thread. I think the pilot religion is bigger than any other religion and you will always be respected if you respect being a pilot.
people can have different faiths but as far as they can respect other people and their faiths everything should be fine.

I don't think people should treat people differently if they are muslim or hindu's or any other religion. If they do then is not any different than being discriminated as black or white and its sad.
Good luck in your career......


________________________
Check that its three greens.....
 

tarp

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Mom taught me there are two things you need to look at when you first meet someone. The first is to look into the other person's eyes. She called them the "windows to the soul". The second is the person's smile.

Dad taught me that when I meet another man to shake his hand. "You can tell a lot by about someone by the way they shake your hand."

These are the only yardsticks I use to measure other people.

We live in a wonderful country with freedoms unimaginable in other places. The religion you pick, the color of your skin, the language you speak, the ideals you believe are meaningless except that you are free to do anything you want. I wish that everybody would study our US Constitution and understand how great it is and how fiercely we must protect it. There is only one USA and there is a reason almost everyone on the planet wants to come here and nobody seems to want to leave.
 

Ronnie Dobbs

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I think the real question is do YOU have a problem with non-muslim pilots. Are they all infidels and should be eliminated or are you willing to coexist with people of different religious beliefs. What if your captain was Jewish? Personally, as long as you don't try and kill me, I could care less what religion your are.
 

AAflyer

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Everyone has given you a pow-wow type answer. In a pefect world I would say the same and wish you luck. In case you hadn't noticed on other threads even the pilot religion has problems. People seem to bash others depending were they fly (majors or regionals). If people are that way just for the type of flying they do I can only imagine what some biggot may think of someones religion.

There are many fine people in this business, but there are just as many that would eat and spit you out to get what they want. Enjoy the flying, but do not go in with blinders on. Watch your back.

I do not say this because I am a pessimist, but more a realist. Good Luck

AAflyer
 

kilomike

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I'll join the powwow and say that I would have no problem with flying with a pilot who happened to be a Muslim. In fact, one of my favorite flying friends was a Muslim. I CHOSE to fly with him because he was a great person and a fine pilot. Unfortunately, he died in a plane crash last year, in which I understand he lost consciousness near the runway when attempting to go around. I still miss flying with him and having such a great friend. If you are anything like my friend was, I would gladly welcome you into my cockpit.

Blue skies and tailwinds,

kilomike
 

T-handle

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my two cents

I have friends of Middle Eastern background (Iranian) working for various regional airlines, one of them a captain. They are great people and I respect them for their hardwork. They came to this country with a strong desire to fly, worked hard to get their ratings, overcame racial prejudices (even before 9/11), build flight time and now it's paying off for them.

Unfortunately, since 9/11 they haven't received the warmest reception from some of their working peers and flying public... you know, the "you're not from around here" look or "Oh great it's a muslim/arab pilot" look...

But my friends are strong enough to shrug off these ignorant people. It doesn't matter if you're black, white, yellow, brown or magenta..... as long as you do the job safely and efficiently... Don't let the media or anyone else convince you otherwise.

We wish you the best of luck in your pursuit of a pilot job!
 

pilot773

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I'm very glad to see that there appears to be an attitude of tolerance and accepting everyone based on their ability. That is very uplifting.

A few months back I asked a similar question on studentpilot.com and got the reply I expected....most people didnt care one way or the other, but some were against it and one even wanted to have all Muslims expelled from the country.

I"m sure that there is some politicing going on in flying just as in every other profession, but I strongly belive that all pilots share a bond and are part of a brotherhood. Maybe that is idealistic and/or naive, but thats how I've always seen it.

I'm very much looking forward to dropping my crappy IT job and flying full time. I am so sick of being inside a cubicle 9 hours a day talking about business processes and data flow diagrams...I don't care if I have to teach as a CFI for the rest of my life. As far as I"m concerned if you can get paid for flying then that is the best thing in the world.

I went up flying yesterday for the first time in a couple of months and I still can't stop smiling.

Thanks again for the replies.
 

Andy Neill

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pilot773,

So how would you answer the question: "What do you see for Israel in ten years?"
 

avbug

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Andy,

With all due respect, I fail to understand why the answer to that question should detemine the standing or reputation of an individual, regardless of heritage, descent, or ethinic background.

I'm as far from arab descent as one can likely get, and I don't see anything changing in the middle east in the next ten or twenty or 100 years, but I also would like to see Israel step down it's approach to local and global politics. I don't wish for their destruction, any more than I wish for the destruction of anybody, enemy or ally.

However, my feelings toward Israel, Or El Salvador, or Kampuchea (Cambodia) should make no difference. I fully appreciate the significance of Israel in the middle east, and our position in relation to it. However, there's room for everyone. I'm not about the share a cockpit with a terrorist, but at the same time, I believe someone can have a dissenting opinion and a personal viewpoint without that making them a terrorist. Cultural dislikes and even hatreds are edemic over there; I'd be suspicious of any native in the region who didn't have strong feelings.
 

aero99

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I, personally wouldn't ask that question. For the same reason I wouldn't ask an American Indian if they are satisfied with the land America "gave" them, and the same reason I wouldn't ask an African American is he plans on vacationing in Jasper, TX.

Just by asking a loaded question you could cause some undue stress in the cockpit that could in turn jeopordize saftey because the pilots are arguing religion, politics or any other "hot" topic.

I don't think Andy's question is quite as severe as my examples, just making a point that sometimes it might be better to not bring up certain topics that are sure to spark a debate- especially when in the cockpit.
 

chawbein

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Religion doesn't matter. What does matter is that you are a courteous and safe pilot. Also that you speak English well. Oh yeah, and that whole blowing **CENSORED****CENSORED****CENSORED****CENSORED** up stuff.
 

pilot773

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Andy,

I don't believe that your question is valid for an aviation forum, but I'll answer the question for you (my question was related to aviation and religion, so I believe it was applicable to this forum)

Where do I see Israel in 10 years time? In the same place it is now, but hopefully a lot more peaceful. Violence in the Mid east, like many other things, is cyclical. Wars and attacks come and go, then are followed by a period of relative peace, then back to the fighting again.

Would I have a problem with a jewish captain above me or someone under me? Nope. Religion and politics have no place in my aircraft.

Am I against jews as such? No, not at all. I have nothing against anyone who has done nothing to me personally. Believe it or not, most Muslims feel the same. Unfortunately, the silent majority is often outheard by the vocal minority.

The reason I asked this question was because it has something to do with me. I get stared at from time to time when I go rent planes from my local FBO, and I know people of my race who have been discriminated against. I'm not about to be discouraged from flying because of a few redneck hicks who can't see past their own shortsightedness and intolerance.

Back in September my father in law was visiting from Pakistan. He was originally scheduled to fly to England on Sept 12. When he finally got a flight back he was removed from the plane by 4 FBI agents because the pilot didn't want a Pakistani on board. Would it be fair if I were to remove a jewish passenger? I would never consider such a thing just based on the fact he is jewish.

Now then, since you seem to be the only one who didn't have an opinion other than to ask what I think of Israel's future, let me ask you something. Why are you so concerned about Israel, and where do you see it in 10 years?

PS...if you and I were sharing a cockpit, why in God's (or Allah's or Jehovah's or Budda's) name would you ask a question about Israel? Shouldn't that be left for another time outside the airplane or are you so prejudiced that if you saw someone with an Muslim name that you would automatically ask such a question?
 

Andy Neill

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Straight up answer to a straight up question. I like that.

The reason I ask such a question deals with my intent to show you that there is a point where one's beliefs WOULD make a difference in how one is treated. I would have problems with Klansmen, Nazis, and those who would rather that Israel (or Palestinians) would be obliterated from the face of the earth. I think that such extremists would have a hard time saying something like "I hope that we can learn to live in peace someday." I consider such to be a very real threat to my safety as an American.

When I asked that of an Afghan pilot (named Osama) at our airline, he didn't seem to take offense.

I personally hope that Israel and Palestine would be national entities enjoying full mutual recognition in an environement of peace. I leave it to them to figure out how to get there.

Thanks for your frankness. I hope you will understand that there will some folks like me out there who will be your friends if they can get past the initial concerns.
 

Orvilleflyer

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I am a Caucasion Captain. I flew with a Middle Eastern F/O for a month. It was a very enlightening experience, and we enjoyed eachother's company. Our attitude in the flightdeck was one of mutual respect and trust. That in and of itself was very uplifting- That with so much crap going on that we could consentrate on the mission at hand, to transport people around the sky safely and on time. On our overnights we would hang out, get dinner, etc. I learned a lot about what it is like to grow up in a war zone. If this guy ever was to "do anything" only he knows it in his heart of hearts. But that's hard to imagine, especially when he was helping old ladies up the stairs and showing young kids the flightdeck, with the kind of smile we all still get about our jobs every now and then- The kind that says it all.
 

surplus1

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pilot773 said:
I have a question for all you pro pilots out there.

I am currently hold a ppl and am working full time as an IT geek while working towards the rest of my ratings. I plan to get my CFI and build up hours to get to the regionals and then a major (I hope and pray).

I also happen to be a Muslim.

My question for you folks is if you have any issues with Muslim students learning ho to fly with the goal of flying professionally. A similar question would be if you know any Muslim pilots working with you currently, and if so, do you have any issues with them?

Thanks, and look forward to any responses.
I read your question and I've read all the answers you received so far. My answer is a little diffrent.

1) I would never have known you were a Muslim if YOU had not chosen to bring it up.

2) I would never have cared if you were Muslim, Jewish, Christian, Hindu, Buddhist or Hari-Krishna if you hadn't brought it up.

3) Your religion, your politics, your race, your sexual orientation, etc. have nothing to do with your being a pilot, and IT whiz, a carpenter or a garbage collector. How you do what you do, is all that matters.

One more thing, and this is my personal view only.
Since you raised the issue, I have a question for you:

Are you an American? If the answer to that question is YES. I have no problem with any American of any religion.

If the answer is NO. Then my answer is: I am leery of Islamic persons that are not first Americans. Islam believes in the concept of a religious State. i.e., Islamic State. That is a contradiction of the basic American belief and the American Constitution which calls for the separation of Church and State. Those contradictions can never be resolved.

If you are American, then you must accept that premise. NO RELIGION can take over the State. Resolve that conflict and I don't care what your religion happens to be.

Good luck to you.
 
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