for Rewire

Qasim Rashid holds his phone out to me over the table at the Starbucks where we are having coffee. Someone has tweeted, “I will give anyone who kills the basterd [sic] Qasim Rashid one thousand dollar.” “First of all, I’m a little offended it’s only a thousand dollars,” Rashid says with a laugh. “I’d like to think my life is worth a little more than that.”

The soft-spoken man sitting across the table from me doesn’t seem like someone who would inspire regular death threats—even on the notoriously troll-happy Twitter. The project for which Rashid draws so much ire is called True Islam, an educational campaign dedicated to highlighting the “true” values espoused in Islam. “There is so much misinformation about Islam,” Rashid says, and in December 2015, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community to which he belongs decided to do something about it. (continued)