Please Be Nice To Muslims

Sri Lanka’s fight is with ISIS, not Islam

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Dewatagaha mosque, one of the places reportedly targeted today

ISIS attacked Sri Lanka, Sri Lankan Muslims did not. This is vitally important to remember, for the safety and dignity of us all. I repeat, this is not about being nice for niceness sake (though I believe in this). Continuing to be kind to the Muslim community is essential for our national security.

ISIS claims to represent Muslims and wants to divide our communities, but why on earth would we listen to fucking ISIS?

Let’s start with a basic question, do Muslims love their children?

ISIS doesn’t. The wife of one of the Easter suicide bombers killed herself and her children when the police arrived, sadly killing 3 policemen as well. She killed her innocent children. ISIS may as well be white walkers in comparison to your average Muslim.

If we can at least agree that Muslims love their children, we can be on the same side here. Muslims love life. This is literally about life vs death, not Sri Lankans vs Muslims.

As with fighting white walkers, we need every ally we can get. And Muslims are allies. Sri Lankan Muslims protested and reported the Easter Attack ringleader and his group in Kattankudy. Sri Lankan Muslims collected and handed over documents with names and details of the suspects 3 years ago and repeatedly since. More to the point, Sri Lankan Muslims died in the attacks and helped rescue people in the aftermath.

We get far better intelligence (and better safety) when a Muslim citizen is comfortable walking into a police station than when they are scared. And that is where we need to stop this problem. Not by suspecting and searching every Muslim for bombs. At that point it’s too late. We need to find the bomb-makers before they can do anything, and that requires good relationships between us all as Sri Lankans, preserving the life we share. This was happening, it’s just that the government ignored the information. So let’s not throw away the good relationship we had.

Personally, it breaks my heart to see my Muslim friends basically apologizing for this act of terrorism. To see them moving house and staying indoors, to hear about them getting kicked off the bus. It sickens me to hear the casual conversation about everything wrong with Islam and that community as if they are the problem. They’re not.

ISIS is the problem and we need to stay focused on that. And we need to stay together. Out of the wreckage of this a lot of racists have emerged with their lists of everything wrong with Muslims and what they’d do. This is not nice, and it is playing into ISIS’s hands.

We do not want to split the Muslim community from us. We want to split ISIS from the Muslim community. This is important. This is vitally important.

Sri Lankan Muslims are our friends, family and allies and we need to keep them close more than ever. Sri Lankan Muslims died in the attacks. Sri Lankan Muslims warned about ISIS before. They are us. We must fight together.

Written by

A writer living in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He/him. indi@indi.ca. Videos: tiny.cc/indication and podcast: anchor.fm/indication. patreon.com/indication

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