Wafa speaks powerfully about what America means to her. It manifests itself in little things. She leaves her house at 5 a.m. and makes her way to Starbucks to have her coffee without fearing that someone might see her and accuse her of immoral behavior.
To her, America means saying good morning to her neighbor and chatting with him for a few moments without being accused of having spent the night with him.
America, for this courageous woman, means that her daughter can come home and tell her that she had lunch with her boyfriend without being beaten or accused of having impugned the family honor.
It is clear throughout "A God Who Hates" that Wafa Sultan was always a very independent thinker, even though there were times in her life when she did not immediately allow herself to go to the next step to which her thinking was leading her.
She writes lovingly about her husband, who was very supportive of her. He was an open-minded thinker — initially more so than was Wafa herself. But she recounts in the book certain momentous events that jarred her thinking, such as in 1979 when Muslims screaming “Alla hu akbar” murdered one of her professors, the ophthalmology lecturer Dr. Yusef Al-Yusef, whom she respected and admired.
Wafa witnessed the murder — and at that exact moment started to question the nature of the Islamic deity.
“But I was afraid,” she explained when I interviewed her recently, “to express my feelings. I was afraid to express my thoughts, because under Islamic Shariah, a Muslim who dares to leave Islam or dares to convert to any other religion is to be killed.
"And every Muslim has the right to kill someone who has left Islam without being asked a question.
“This is the Islamic law. Once you were born as a Muslim, you’re not allowed to leave it. This is simply the Islamic law, and it seems to me it’s very hard to convince Americans that this is the way it is.”