Over the past weekend, vandals damaged almost 200 graves at a Jewish cemetery west of St. Louis in University City, Missouri. As officials investigate the crime, others have found alternative ways to help: Muslim community organizers launched a crowdfunding campaign, raising over $85,000 to repair the damaged graves as of midday Wednesday.
When news of the Chesed Shel Emeth Society cemetery vandalism broke, Linda Sarsour of MPower Change and Tarek El-Messidi from CelebrateMercy teamed up to quickly begin raising money on Muslim crowdfunding site LaunchGood. Their initial goal was to raise $20,000. Within just two days, the campaign has significantly surpassed that goal, reaching $85,000 around 3 p.m. EST on Wednesday. The total is still climbing.
The campaign’s organizers explained on their LaunchGood page that they were “inspired by the example of our Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, who stood up to pay respects for a passing Jewish funeral procession. When …