In the last week or so I have turned on MSNBC to find myself flooded with the “latest” on the Trayvon Martin shooting. Most of the newest information is rehashed and still leads me to the conclusion that George Zimmerman should be charged with the murder of the 17-year old kid. A kid that only had Skittles and ice tea in his pockets. A kid that was talking with his girlfriend on the phone in the moments before his demise.
This tragedy should generate the attention, outrage, and activist support we see now. Hell, it should receive so much more and the magnifying glass of the press needs to be amplified.
But another tragedy currently sits on the back burner. It might explode onto the front pages in the coming days but it will once again there only because of activist outrage.
Outside of San Diego, Cal. a 32 year-old mother of five fell victim to a horrific hate crime. Shaima Alawadi’s family took her off life support on March 24 two days after her 17 year-old daughter, Fatima, found her bludgeoned to death with a note saying, “Go back to your country, you terrorist.”
The Alawadi’s moved to El Cajon, Cal just three weeks ago after spending nearly two decades in Michigan. They came to suburb for her husband’s job as a private contractor for the U.S. Army. He serves as a cultural advisor and trains soldiers that are set to be deployed to the Middle East.
The family found a similar note soon after they moved in but brushed it off as a prank.
An innocent young mother beaten because of her heritage and for wearing a hijab. Meanwhile her husband has helped this country’s soldiers prepare for their time in the Middle East. He was doing a patriotic duty and she is killed because a few ignorant people thought they could.
Yet, where is this in the media’s outrage? Where are the protests?
A Facebook group is encouraging women to wear a hijab at some point this month. But it only has 10,000 likes thus far. In a nice piece for the Washington Post, Omar Sacirbey, notes that a Christian woman will wear one on Easter Sunday and others that are participating:
“I am a devout Christian and will be wearing hijab as a prayer in April,” wrote Karen Streeter of Pasadena, Calif., next to her photo of herself in a hijab. “Growing up, I was bullied because I was different from others, so I have had a taste of what it is like to be harassed because of how you look.”
Her killer(s) remain at large and unknown. That might be a factor in the lack of outrage as Trayvon’s killer is known and still free of any charges.
I am strongly believe a larger factor in the silence comes from an unsaid bias against people of the Islamic faith. For the last decades we have fought a war on terrorism aimed at Islamic countries. So-called leaders raised hell at a proposed community center run by an Imam near the site of 9/11. On television pundits routinely equate Islam with terrorism. Being a Muslim means you must be a terrorist. It was written on the note next to Awaladi’s body and the mainstream media’s lack of outrage says it as well.
© Aaron Krager 2008-2014 | Have any questions? Send me an email.