I sighed heavily at the news of yet another Muslim man terrorizing innocent people. I just sat there thinking how impossible we are making it for people to truly believe that there is no causality between Islam and terrorism… A man by the name of Sheikh Haron was holding hostages in a cafe in Sydney, Australia for more than twelve hours into late yesterday, and putting up flags with the Islamic shahāda on the windows. Top of your head, what would you expect the Aussies to think or do? … Hate on Muslim people, right? Isn’t that the currency of the day, after all? Maybe, pull on women’s hijabs? Verbally insult ‘Muslim-looking’ people and potentially physically assault them? We were there after 9/11. We were there after the Boston bombings. We all have our racist stories. But not today. The Australian online community is pulling together to protect their Muslim compatriots. Australians are offering to walk and ride with Muslim Australians in public places if they fear racist backlash. The hashtag is “#illridewithyou.” Search for it. It is incredible.
It all started with Rachael Jacobs who saw the lady sitting next to her on the train silently removing her hijab, she ran after her and said: “Put it back it on—I’ll walk with you.” The veiled woman started to cry and hugged Rachael for about a minute, then walked off alone. A TV content editor, Tessa Kum, read Rachael’s story and blasted it on her social media and finished with: “If you wear religious attire, if you don’t feel safe alone, I’ll ride with you. @ me for schedule.” And it caught on.
Whether this lasts just for today, or whether this is truly a new wave of humanism, THIS is news that is worthy of sharing.