I’ve been silent since the shootings happened on Friday because of a few reasons. Firstly, I didn’t know where to begin to process my feelings—one that felt wildly close to home. As an Australian, I know acutely the layers of experience for this particular shooting. But, truthfully, I didn’t know how to begin to deal with the pain. So I’ve avoided it. I’ve read zero news reports, watched no videos, and I’m sure I haven’t written back to a lot of people’s messages. The feeling is too heavy when I go to locate it, and every single time I’ve stopped before I spiral.
A lot of that is also because the main feeling—beyond this sadness—is rage. Just overwhelming fucking rage. For the times I’ve seen people be Islamophobic—people I trust, people I like. For years I’ve written about how common it is for people to sling Islamophobic comments around without even thinking of the implications. And how tiring it is to defend your faith. How exhausting it is to feel scared to say you’re Muslim when people remark they thought you were “smarter” than that..... as if that’s a compliment. How frustrating it is to be up against people’s questions or assumptions. All the time. In the interim, this is what happens: people get slaughtered in a place of worship. Decade long wars are surmised to make sure you’re bombed back to the dark ages. Resulting in mass genocide, famine and rape. Countries and regions are split resulting is mass devastation. Muslims are subjugated while non Muslims have the gall to tell us that our faith subjugates us.
Islamophobia is everywhere. It’s in India. It’s in the U.S.A. It’s in New Zealand. Hate is hate everywhere.
I’m also fucking rageful that white men still walk into synagogues and gurdwaras and mosques and churches and take this from us. Take this purity, this devotion. I’ve been a Waleed Aly stan for years now and it felt appropriate to share his statement on how harrowing this ordeal has been. Islamophobia exists. And many of you should consider how you perpetuate it.
Even still, I’ll be at Jummah prayer this Friday. Thanks to @padmalakshmi for this 🖤 Watch the whole video on her page, it’s worth it.