Halal in the Heartland
An American teenager searching the Internet for answers finds faith in the Koran.
Friday, January 19, 2007. This is the date that Trenton Alan Carl, a half-white, half-Mexican Southern Baptist Christian from Texas, chose to convert to Islam using instructions he found on the Internet. After his classes at the local community college, the eighteen-year-old drove home, took a shower, put on a set of fresh clothes and fired up his computer. Trent’s conversion lacked the communal fanfare that he experienced during his Christian baptism at the age of thirteen. Instead, it took place in his dimly-lit bedroom, furnished with a pullout futon, a wooden desk decked out with a home music studio, and a single window that looked out over the tiny town of Bear Creek, Tex. He logged on to Facebook to retrieve the steps about how to become a Muslim. On a junior legal pad, Trent scribbled the following transliterated verses: “Ashadu an La ilaha il Allah, Muhammad- ur- rasool-Allah.”
He converted to the second largest religion in the world with this one l…