Mahershala Ali becomes the first Muslim actor to win an Oscar




There’s no Muslim ban at this year’s Academy Awards.


Mahershala Ali, accepting the best supporting actor trophy on Sunday for his turn in “Moonlight,” became the first-ever Muslim actor to take home an Oscar.


The Oakland native closed out his acceptance speech with a shoutout to his wife, Amatus Sami-Karim, who spent awards season in her third trimester.


“We just had our daughter four days ago,” Ali said. “So I just want to thank her for being such a soldier through this process and helping really carry me through it all.”

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The Oakland native’s breakthrough — coming on the heels of President Trump’s travel ban on seven majority-Muslim nations currently stayed by a federal appeals court — didn’t go unnoticed on social media.


“The first #Oscars winner is a Muslim. America is already great, Donald,” tweeted author Anand Giridharadas.


Ali, who converted to Islam 17 years ago, spoke about faith and persecution while accepting a Screen Actors Guild award last month for “Moonlight.”


“When we get caught up in the minutia, the details that make us all different, there are two ways of seeing that,” he said.

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“It’s an opportunity to see the texture of that person, to see what makes them unique. Or it’s an opportunity to go to war about it. To say that that person’s different than me and I don’t like it, so let’s battle.”

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mahershala ali
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