ISLAMABAD: Minority hate crimes are never easy to fathom. One is always overwhelmed with questions — how could people be so cruel? How could anyone hate the other so deeply? It makes one lose faith in humanity. As a resident of a Muslim majority country, it becomes even more difficult to swallow the recent rise in hate crimes that are arising from blatant Islamophobia perpetuated in Trump’s America and by other right-wing regimes.
This morning I awoke to tragic news which demonstrates just how difficult the situation is becoming. In the US, police found remains belonging to missing Virginia teenager Nabra Hassanen, who allegedly was assaulted and a 22-year-old man has been charged with murder in connection with the case. The killing rattled a Muslim community and Muslims the world over, in the midst of celebrating Ramazan.
Despite education and an enlightened tech savvy age, the citizens of the world are not being taught respect or tolerance. The influence of hate speech of politicians is permeating the layman’s consciousness and fuelling more incidents. Last month, two men on a Portland train in the US were stabbed and killed after they intervened to protect two Muslim girls who were being harassed. Sunday night, the same day as Nabra’s murder, a van struck a crowd of pedestrians, including worshipers leaving a pair of mosques in London.
My heart is broken not just as a Muslim, but as a human being. The manifestations of Islamophobia are wreaking havoc and petrifying the Muslim community.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 20th, 2017.