Raheel Raza: I got Cancelled for Being an Anti-Islamist Muslim

Written By Raheel Raza, Posted on March 17, 2021

Some years ago, I was contacted by a journalist from BBC as she was looking for a Muslim woman to comment on an Islamic issue dealing with women in Indonesia. We had two detailed conversations about the topic and she seemed to be very interested in quoting me. Then she asked me “what do you look like?” so I directed her to my website. The next day she emailed me and said they had found someone else. Well, it seems that my non-hijab avatar did not suit the image of a “Muslim woman” so they went with someone with a hijab.

At that time, I laughed it off as ‘cancel culture’ was not yet a mania. Since then, ‘cancel culture’ has seriously taken off and has become part of the framework in the West. If you don’t agree with the ‘official narrative’ and opinions – you get cancelled. It’s as simple as that. 


“Mr. Bean” actor Rowan Atkinson compared cancel culture to a “medieval mob looking for someone to burn.” 

The list grows every day: 

  • Washington/Lincoln/Jefferson — The former U.S. presidents’ names have been wiped from San Francisco public schools after the school board decided to rename 44 schools that had “ties to racism” and “dishonorable legacies.”

  • J.K. Rowling, Goya Food

  • Meghan Murphy and Rex Murphy among others in Canada and the list goes on.

  • Recently Dr. Seuss

For me, it became personal recently. In January this year, I was approached by the Director of Arts and Culture at The Miles Nadal JCC (downtown Toronto) to participate in an online panel that was to take place on March 7. The discussion was centered around an Israeli-French film called “In Between” which deals with the stories of three diverse women. I was sent a link to the film and found it fascinating especially in light of International Women’s Day in March so I enthusiastically agreed to be on the panel. According to the invite, my name was referred by the Israeli Consulate (with whom I have a very good rapport) and the other partners were: New Israel Fund of Canada, United Jewish Appeal’s Emerging Communities Committee, and our Israeli Connection program at our JCC. None of these names raised a red flag for me so I was happily waiting for the day of the event. 


On February 25 I received an email saying that the JCC is sorry they are cancelling the event. I didn’t think much about it until I started receiving emails from some of my Jewish friends concerned that the event had been cancelled. I told them it’s not in my hands. Then I got a call from a journalist at The Canadian Jewish News who asked me if I knew that the event had been cancelled because of my participation? You could have knocked me down with a feather – Moi? No, I told him I did not know this and what’s the problem with me anyway? 

He did his due diligence by calling around and doing his research and then told me that the New Israel Fund of Canada (NIFC) had pulled out of the event after learning more about me – which I found surprising since there’s nothing hidden about my work and it’s all on my website. 

Apparently, the NIFC withdrew as a co-presenter of the March 7 virtual Q&A, and NIFC executive director Ben Murane told The CJN his organization pulled out of the event on Feb. 25 “when we learned more about who (Raza) was,” likely referencing me being a Muslim woman known for speaking out about Islamist extremism.

The entire findings of the incident were published in The Canadian Jewish News and then I discovered that one of the main culprits was the Southern Poverty Law Center who are not new at trying to defame people. I don’t give much credence to SPLC because they have tried to attack me before and consider me “guilty by association” which is abhorrent. SPLC also smeared Maajid Nawaz from the UK this way, who sued them and received millions and an apology for being called an “anti-Muslim extremist” for speaking out about Islamist extremism for his personal experience. I wonder if I should go this route?

Maajid Nawaz (Photo from Times of Israel)

Maajid Nawaz (Photo from Times of Israel)

Meanwhile, this story was posted on Facebook and I was taken aback at the outpouring of support for me and criticism of both NIFC and SPLC. 

As far as I’m concerned and I told CJN “I wish those who had an objection had contacted me directly and I would have gracefully bowed out of the program without any hesitation….because the event should not have been cancelled”.

And the ‘cancel culture’ continues to thrive….. 

Raheel Raza

4 responses to “Raheel Raza: I got Cancelled for Being an Anti-Islamist Muslim”

  1. Dave Smith says:

    Respectfully, maybe it is because of this? I do not have a problem with any Muslim, as long as they do NOT want to hurt us or wish us ill will.

  2. James says:

    Only you can say what is best for you, but I really hope you do go after the SPLC. Why should you have to suffer being blacklisted because of their lies? Maybe the more times they have to pay up, they’ll do their job properly instead of running roughshod over innocent people. If you do get something out of them, we know you’ll put it to better use than what they’re doing. Either way, best wishes to you.

  3. Vivienne Ziner says:

    Raheel- only an idiot or someone with true malicious intent would ever "cancel’ you. The Left (and the NIFC) certainly falls into those tragic and stupid classifications. Their ignorance, their blindness, their self affirmed "moral positions" are based upon an ignorance, a superior morality complex which leads them to believe that they know better about Muslims and Islam than Muslims who practice Islam! It has sadly always been the Jews who have brought about the downfall of the Jews by just such moronic behaviour and beliefs. Somehow, they believe that their fawning worshipping of militant Islamic viewpoints will make haters ‘like’ them. Boy, have I got news for them! A pox upon them all for their moronic capitulation to ideologies that want them dead or dhimmies. May they get what they deserve…and may they leave the rest of us alone. Amen. Ameen.

  4. Vivienne Ziner says:

    Further to that- yes, you should sue the motherf***ers! The only thing that can deter them is paying for their stupidity and ignorance! Sue them, my sister!