Yesterday, I experienced one of the worst acts of savagery that I could ever had thought of.
I always have to take the bus to go home from school, and yesterday was no exception. It was raining heavily and I had no umbrella, but I didn’t mind. The bus arrived, I got in and took a seat. Everything fine. Soon, the bus got quite crowded, and there were no places to sit. An elderly lady got on the bus and I gave her my seat as an act of kindness. She wore a wooden cross around her neck and had this expression that made her look like the kind of lady that would do anything for anyone. A few blocks later, a lot of the people in the bus got down and I got to take a seat in front of this lovely granny. I got bored and decided to take out my Qur’an… oh, how innocent I was… “Terrorista.” (Terrorist.), I heard. “Disculpe?” (Excuse me?) “A vos, pedazo de mierda terrorista asesina…” (You, piece of murderer, terrorist scum…) “Me confunde, señora, los Musulmanes no somos terroristas.” (You are mistaken, lady, we Muslims aren’t terrorists.) “Ah, no… y la cantidad de gente que muere por ustedes, pedazos de mierdas…” (Oh, right… how about the people that die because of you, you scoundrels?) “Señora, es un error, vea–” (Madam, it’s a mistake, you see–) And she knocked the book off my hands. I got to the floor to reach for it and her heel pierced trough my hand. I instinctively tried to get on my feet, and she pushed me (she wasn’t very strong, but I couldn’t do much to her either). She pulled my hair and my striped neckerchief (I wear it as a replacement of the Hijab I should wear). She kicked my bag around and opened it, inspecting it for ‘bombs’. Then -and I still feel dirty while writing this- she proceeded to tug at my clothes and fondle me in a most indecent way, also looking for ‘dangerous objects’. All the while, the other people in the bus just stared, not moving a finger to stop this calamity. When she was done with me, she took my bag and threw it off the bus trough the window, and then she pushed me out trough the door. I fell in the pavement, and then, only then, the only person with the heart to help me showed up. A guy in a bike helped me getting up and gathering my stuff. He gave me a band-aid and stayed with me until I stopped crying. I had to walk the remaining 15 blocks to my home under the rain, limping and sobbing, and then explain my mother what happened. She is truly horrified.
Not only I lost my Qur’an, a sketchbook half-full of precious drawings and my neckerchief, but my dignity and trust as well.
Now, I want to ask… why?
Was that hate neccessary? Why the intolerance? Why this wrong stereotype? Why… the ignorance of the people?
I truly hope nobody experiences what I have felt that moment… it is horrible… and not even my worst enemy deserves it…