Fires and Danish Cartoons All Over Again

Bodies were carried out of burning factories in Karachi and Lahore
Photograph from the New York Times

Yesterday was an unbelievably tragic day. Over 300 Pakistanis were killed in factory fires in Karachi and Lahore. Most of the people were trapped inside. The buildings did not meet up to safety regulations. Many of the windows were barred and the doors were shuttered. Some people miraculously survived by jumping out of windows that were open. Others did not. I can’t even put to words how incredibly sad I feel. But I hope it doesn’t even compare to the shame that the factory owners and the corrupt leaders of Pakistan are feeling right now. My heart goes out to the families of those who died. Not just to those in Pakistan, but also to the American ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, along with three others were killed in Benghazi when the U.S. embassy was attacked. A mob of extremists did this because of….a movie. Not even a movie, but a rather amateur attempt at a movie, more like a really long video, that was basically trying to warn its audience of the dangers of Islam. Blah blah blah. As if we haven’t heard that rhetoric before. While it saddens me to hear about people having such strong anti-Muslim sentiments, I am more enraged by the fact that these criminals think they have the right to storm an embassy and kill innocent people who had absolutely nothing to do with the production of this video. WHY? I don’t understand. Why do these terrorists have to be so dumb and dangerous? Why would they do such a thing merely months after the U.S. helped them to overthrow their cruel and (literally) insane dictator? This whole reaction is the same exact way extremists reacted when the Danish cartoons were published. American flags were burning, buildings and vehicles were set on fire and FOR WHAT? I don’t care what people say. No matter how offensive, insulting and racist these sorts of cartoons and videos are, it does not justify killing innocent people.

I am so tired of this. When does it end? When will these extremists just learn to shut the hell up and stay at home? When will Islamophobes learn that anti-Muslim images are just as appalling and derogatory as anti-Semitic and blackface images? It’s complete madness. On the one hand, the Islamophobes are ever so subtly campaigning to either deport people like me or put us all in concentration camps. And on the other hand, there are the Islamic extremists who claim to act in the name of Islam, but all they do is drag my religion in the dirt.

We need more water if we’re going to put out all these fires. The fires of corruption and extremism.

People protesting against the criminals who attacked the U.S. Embassy in Benghazi, Libya
Photograph from the New York Times