Hungry for Ramadan

Hungry for Ramadan

The Story of the USPS Eid Stamp

eid_stamp.jpgWith Eid-ul-Fitr — the three-day holiday signifying the end of Ramadan — approaching soon, many Muslims are getting ready to send Eid greeting cards to their friends and family. And what better way to send them than with the official Eid stamp issued by the US Postal Service (USPS) adorning the corner of the envelope? The stamp, which has been in circulation since 2001, was reissued last week at the new $0.41 rate, just in time for the Eid holidays (the other Eid being Eid-ul-Adha, which occurs later this year and commemorates the hajj).
For those who aren’t familiar with the history of this stamp, it is an intriguing one. It all started ten years ago, when Cincinnati housewife Aminah Assilmi started a campaign to have the stamp issued, after a friend’s son saw a Hanukkah stamp and asked what the Muslim equivalent looked like.
For the next several years, Muslim children and women’s groups sent thousands of postcards and drawings to the USPS in an effort to push the stamp forward. After all, each year the USPS receives 50,000 stamp recommendations, of which only 30-40 become stamps. For years, the campaign seemed like an uphill struggle.


Fortunately, the USPS was persuaded to issue the Eid stamp, and commissioned an elegant design by Muslim-American calligrapher Mohammad Zakariya that tapped into the rich artistic legacy of Islamic calligraphy. After more than 3 years of planning, it was released on September 1, 2001 – just 10 days before the 9/11 attacks on America.
The stamp instilled pride in Muslim-Americans at at time when it was sorely needed, but others saw an easy target for anger over 9/11 and began a nationwide boycott. Thankfully, the boycott went nowhere (Muslims are the primary consumers of the stamps anyway, and all profits go back to the USPS), and the entire initial run of 75 million stamps was sold.
It is a testament to the character of America that such a stamp could be sold alongside others commemorating Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and Thanksgiving, despite the political turmoil of the past six years. No such stamp has been issued in the UK, Europe, Canada, or other countries where Muslims are a minority. To top it all off, the House of Representatives has just unanimously passed a resolution (376-0) commemorating this year’s Ramadan.  
It is this acceptance and acknowledgement of faith that has, in part, allowed for a healthier integration of Muslims in America and has contributed to a strong spiritual identity that could, inshallah, inspire Muslims elsewhere around the world.

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posted October 3, 2007 at 3:55 pm

wow… this is great! thanks for the post. i never saw this before.

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posted October 4, 2007 at 7:58 am

An angel gave a prophecy for the five Continents of the world in 1998. This is just an iota of what God revealed to one of his servants.
Europe: The Angel said of Europe, I am grieved, I am grieved. Unrighteouness, Uncleanness, ungodliness- all over Europe. The sin has risen to heaven. The Holy Spirit is grieved. ” I saw rivers of Europe flodding and covering millions of houses, millions drown. Earthquakwes shall occur all over Europe. Countries that have no earthquakes, shall be shaken. The Eiffel Tower in Paris shall crumble to the ground. A great part of Germany will be destroyed. The great city of London – destruction everywhere.Floods over scandinavia. Spain and Portugal passing through great hunger and great destruction. Many will die .
Asia : Millins are going to hear the voice of the Lord. ‘There shall be disaster, starvation – many will die from hunge. Strong winds will be looked like has never before. A great part shall be shaken and destroyed. Eathquakes will take place all over Asia ans the sea will cover the earth. Millions will die in China and India. Nation will be against nation, brother against brother. Asians fight each other. Nuclear weapons shall be used. killing millions .” Catastrophic ! ” Financial crisis will come to Asia.( We are seeing some signs in China right now , with all their tainted goods)
God said, ” I will shake the world.” Folks , you all should be seeking Jesus, in this late hour, instead of staying addicted to that ‘narcotic’ called ‘ Religion, will will lead one, to nowhere, but ‘Hell”. be bless.
What God said about South and North America is just as Bad !.

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posted October 5, 2007 at 3:12 am

Vidia, I think you mean to quote religion as “opiate”. If religion is so, then why call to yours? I thought of a bumpersticker that will probably get my car vandalized, “Jesus was Muslim, and he worshipped Allah”.

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posted October 12, 2007 at 11:20 pm

I have just received an email, which has evidently been in circulation for at least 5 years, urging the boycott of this stamp. It was SO hateful. It is times like this I am ashamed to be a Christian.

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Bart McQueary

posted November 19, 2007 at 5:21 pm

I use the Eid stamp for all of my postal needs. I sent a letter to the local newspaper this week encouraging people to use the stamp and informing them what the stamp celebrates.
I will post a link to that letter when it is published Wednesday.

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Bart McQueary

posted November 28, 2007 at 10:04 pm

I’m sorry, but the local newspaper refused to print my letter. I live in a small town in Kentucky, and they are very hostile towards the Eid stamp.

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Bo Orndorff

posted September 24, 2011 at 1:36 pm

A nice and a very helpful story! I am so glad I stumbled your article. Keep up the amazing work. Have a good day!mail forwarders

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