Sayonara Diaz
New Yorker born and raised in the Dominican Republic, Sayonara Diaz, talks about prejudice and rejections she faces on a daily basis as a Muslim woman. Photo: Screenshot / Youtube

Sayonara Diaz, a New Yorker fro the Dominican Republic, recently spoke to journalist Isolda Peguero, host and producer of “El Rincón de Isolda,” about prejudice and rejections she faces on a daily basis as a Muslim woman.

During the interview, Diaz revealed who led her to Islam. “I’ve been a Muslim for two years. The reason is because God revealed Himself to me and my daughter had a big influence,” the woman said. “My daughter studies physiology and has a minor in Middle East and Islam. Her concern about studying Islam, and knowing what’s beyond made me realize it's not only what people say.”

The phenomenon of Latinos converting to Islam grows every single day. Currently, it is estimated that in the United States, more than 3.3 million people practice Islam and 6% of those are Hispanic.

As of 2014, 57% of the population (5.7 million) identified themselves as Roman Catholics and 23% (2.3 million) as Protestants, usually called "Evangelicos" due to them being overwhelmingly Evangelical Protestant or Pentecostal.

Recent immigration as well as proselytizing has brought other religions, like Spiritist, Buddhist, Chinese Folk, Islam and Judaism, being the last two the least popular among Dominican citizens.

Despite the immediate rejection of her family and friends after converting, Sayonara Diaz says that in Islam, a religion often associated with terrorist acts, she found spiritual peace and a true connection with God. “Unfortunately, I felt the rejection of some family members,” explained Diaz. “One of them commented he feels nervous with my conversion to Islam.”

When Peguero asked Diaz about her position on Trump’s travel ban, Diaz said she felt a lot of pain and sadness. She also said how unfair it is to be punished for something someone else did, bringing to the conversation the quote: “one does the harm, and another bears the blame.”

Watch the full interview below.

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