32 year-old mother Shaima Alawadi, beaten with a tire iron in her San Diego home, died today. A note in her home read, “Go back to your country, terrorist.”
There are times when I wonder how the human race got so completely fucked up.
I know historians say we’ve always been fucked up, and that we’ve always hated “others”. My husband and I were talking about Trayvon today in the car, still mourning his death, still trying to figure out how such a “civilized” culture can murder its young and have a law to protect the killer.
And then I got home and read about Shaima. Today, not far from me in Southern California, Shaima Alawadi died after being beaten to death with a tire iron.
According to The Washington Post, a note in her home read, “go back to your country, terrorist.”
Is it a coincidence that Alawadi wears traditional head cover, a sign of modesty and piety, called hijab?
It is too painful to imagine Shaima’s last moments. She was 32, just a few years younger than me, and a married mother just as I am. She was beaten in the morning on Wednesday after her husband left to take their children to school.
We can’t help but draw parallels to Trayvon Martin’s death and Geraldo Rivera‘s incredibly controversial (and rightly so) claim that the 17 year-old would still be alive were he not wearing a hoodie.
It may not have been Shaima’s hijab that made her a target… or maybe it was. Either way, in both cases, it is clear this country needs a shaking-up, a rebooting, a long hard look in the mirror at itself for allowing the hate against “others” to claim the life of yet another innocent. The people who deny that Trayvon’s death was race-based, or a hate crime, cannot deny that Mrs. Alawadi’s death was indeed a hate crime at its very core.
And yet the words feel very hollow, don’t they? We may ride the media blitz of Trayvon Martin and Shaima Alawadi, we may all claim to want to stop racism, but in the end, what will each of us do to end it?
Photo courtesy of haemengine