I went to the mall, and a little girl called me a terrorist.
My name is Ela. I am seventeen years old. I am not Muslim, but my friend told me about her friend being discriminated against for wearing a hijab. So I decided to see the discrimination firsthand to get a better understanding of what Muslim women go through.
My friend and I pinned scarves around our heads, and then we went to the mall. Normally, vendors try to get us to buy things and ask us to sample a snack. Clerks usually ask us if we need help, tell us about sales, and smile at us. Not today. People, including vendors, clerks, and other shoppers, wouldn’t look at us. They didn’t talk to us. They acted like we didn’t exist. They didn’t want to be caught staring at us, so they didn’t look at all.
And then, in one store, a girl (who looked about four years old) asked her mom if my friend and I were terrorists. She wasn’t trying to be mean or anything. I don’t even think she could have grasped the idea of prejudice. However, her mother’s response is one I can never forgive or forget. The mother hushed her child, glared at me, and then took her daughter by the hand and led her out of the store.
All that because I put a scarf on my head. Just like that, a mother taught her little girl that being Muslim was evil. It didn’t matter that I was a nice person. All that mattered was that I looked different. That little girl may grow up and teach her children the same thing.
This experiment gave me a huge wakeup call. It lasted for only a few hours, so I can’t even begin to imagine how much prejudice Muslim girls go through every day. It reminded me of something that many people know but rarely remember: the women in hijabs are people, just like all those women out there who aren’t Muslim.
People of Tumblr, please help me spread this message. Treat Muslims, Jews, Christians, Buddhists, Hindus, Pagans, Taoists, etc., exactly the way you want to be treated, regardless of what they’re wearing or not wearing, no exceptions. Reblog this. Tell your friends. I don’t know that the world will ever totally wipe out prejudice, but we can try, one blog at a time.
this is so perfect in absolutely every single way.
> white woman talks about experiencing discrimination for a few hours: 34k notes
> actual muslim woman talks about experiencing discrimination for her entire life: typical derailing, 2k notes if you’re lucky
THIS POOR WHITE WOMAN!
And she’s wrong. That little girl had already been taught prejudice.
THAT’S WHY SHE ASKED IF YOU WERE A TERRORIST.
I’m sick of white folks lil social experiments and having their feelings hurt and ultimately learning nothing nothing. She’s not going to do anything with this except use it as an interesting story to tell someone else, so that person can tell her, “Everyone isn’t like that” and they can agree to disagree or some bullshit and go back to being White. Maybe for a few years she’ll get a coat and be an “ally” until it’s time for her to have a real life and serve the power structure and fall in line.
I’m not impressed, I never am.
Your few hours, experiencing a TENTH of what your friend and other muslim women experience their whole lives in this racist ass country amount to nothing.
Please note, they’re always trying to find out if PoC are telling the “truth” and when we are, they’re SHOCKED. Not at our experiences, but simply that we were telling the truth.
We’re all liars until a White person also tells them, or they pull a stunt like this, and even then, it’s only an isolated incident, isn’t it?
STANDING OVATION FOR THE COMMENTARY
Slow clap for the bolded ONLY.
Yeah, the moment I read “I am not Muslim”, I started side-eyeing this. Even more so when I saw the “we decided to experiment and play POC for a day!~” aspect. A+ on the commentary unpacking this, since everyone wants to blindly applaud this for this ~ precious yt lady ~
In which a non-Muslim woman is congratulated for sharing how she learned a Very Important Lesson through cultural voyeurism.
An example of how a well intentioned act can still have a hurtful, microaggressive impact on people who experience this kind of oppression daily. Because choosing to experience Islamophobia for a day is still a choice, and to have that choice is a part of privilege. And it can be cutting simply to flaunt it.