What’s Wrong With the World? Humanity Has Come to an End, But Islamophobia Hasn’t

I like to believe that there are lots of positive aspects to this world. That people choose to love, not to hate. That people care about their fellow human beings.

But unfortunately, I receive news far too often showing me the opposite. On Friday, March 15th, 49 people were killed in a mass shooting at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. The shooting happened on Friday afternoon, around the time many men and women had come to the mosque for Friday prayer.

The horrible attack was brought on by a white supremacist who clearly believed the worst of Muslims. This kind of thinking is disgusting, and tragically, more common than you think. Islamophobia is widespread all across the world, and it has become very clear that terrorists will stop at nothing to keep perpetuating it.

The attack comes amid news about the creation and implementation of Muslim internment camps in the Xianjiang region of China. China’s Uighur Muslims, an ethnic minority group, are being put into camps for the country’s counterterrorism efforts. It has been said that these camps are like “boarding schools” for the detainees, who are forced to each pork, drink alcohol, and renounce their religion.

Acts like the ones in New Zealand and China show that there is no end to Islamophobia, especially across the world. Attacking a mosque and detaining Muslims are hate crimes and should not be condoned in any way. It is hard to believe that people are allowing a world leader to put people in concentration camps simply because of their beliefs. There is a racist and Islamophobic belief that Muslims are responsible for acts of terrorism, but it is clear that Muslims are one of the many victims of terrorism. Innocent Muslims around the world have been blamed for terrorist attacks that they are not responsible for.

The wrong people believe the wrong thing, and as a result, innocent lives are lost or put at risk. The use of internment camps is inhumane and akin to the horrible acts of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi party’s concentration camps. Detaining people based on their religious beliefs is an act of hate and bigotry, and is unfortunately all to too common and tolerated.

I am here to say no more.

I will not tolerate any more acts of Islamophobia in this world. Thoughts and prayers will never work, nor have they ever worked. Now is the time for change and policy. Punish those that feel the need to act criminally against innocent people.

We need to hold people accountable, whether that be criminals or lawmakers, and often those two are the same people. While the man responsible for the attack in New Zealand has been captured by the authorities, there is still more work that needs to be done. Gun control laws and rules against hate crimes must be set in place.

Accountability also means holding President Xi Jinping responsible for his Islamophobic actions. A world leader has no right to act this way, and it is not enough to simply denounce his ways; there should be a call to end his absurd abuse of power.

Of course, politics and government don’t work in that way. Many countries fear cutting ties or rebuking China because the country is such an economic powerhouse. However, now is not the time to care about money and politics. Now is the time to think about humanity, and the role it plays in keeping people safe.

I call on our world leaders to put an end to this. With widespread Islamophobia, there is no humanity; and with no humanity, there is no safety.