I feel like shit, like I did something wrong to break my family apart because it’s my birthday. I don’t know what to do, I’m so lost.
John McLaren Park. April, 2013.
I know it’s been a while since the events happened, but I’m so afraid people are forgetting about it and have not yet understood it’s full repercussions not by just the victims in the hospitals, but around the world. I’m not sure how much this will spread considering I don’t have a lot of followers, but I sincerely hope it will. It’s important to me, my family,my background, and my people.
This was something I wrote in response to the events, and I really feel like this needs to be read and heard by everyone.
I really don’t know where to begin. Your actions, as well as your brother’s have changed things both for the better and the worst. You attempted to destroy the community of what I consider my hometown. You killed innocent people, and further destroyed the chances of some people ever being able to walk again. You then attempt to take over the town of where some of my closest friends live, and failed miserably.
People want me to hate you, and I suppose they may have succeeded for a little while, but my intuition has constantly fought against the popular belief. I feel horrible to disagree with what everyone tells me to believe, especially after what you’ve done to us, but I can’t muster enough anger to hate you and only you. When I saw your photo on the news, something told me you were lost, confused and absolutely afraid of what you did, and what will happen. I believe your brother forced you to do this, because I refuse to think that someone your age who has been held at such high regards by his peers could do this by himself. I can be totally wrong, but right now, I don’t think I am, until legitimate proof tells me that you have believed this from the start.
I want to hate you so much; as much as I hate the Taliban, Al-Qaeda, and the goddamn other people who follow in their footsteps, but I can’t. You destroyed my chances of being accepted into a society simply because of my religion. Everyone believed you had to be Arab because no one else would do it, and to be quite honest, you do look Arab. Yet, I will never be accepted now, because you have stabbed, shot, and burned the reputation for the Muslim community. You have further strengthened my fear for my father’s safety because of his religion and because he is from Algeria, both quite obvious if you ever had the chance to meet him. Now when I do Hajj, I’ll be patted down ten times more than any other ‘normal’ person in the airport simply because of the traditional clothes that I will wear. After nearing 17 years of life; from where I was born in Cambridge, to where I live now in a boarding school, I will be seen as an outsider because I am a Muslim and of course by the majorities’ definition, Muslims are terrorists, and Muslims are evil. But I don’t know if I should blame you as much as I should blame the other terrorists I mentioned earlier or even if I should blame people for their ignorance.
I hope you don’t die, because revenge isn’t always justice. By killing you, you will not have time to think over your actions of what you did while you sit in your prison cell. Yet, something in my gut tells me to feel bad. You’re only about two or three years older than me, which is a great reminder of how easily it is to be manipulated even by one person. I want to blame you, but at the same time I don’t, because I don’t believe this was your idea. Yes, you committed the actions, but the way I see it, your brother forced you. If it’s true, I don’t know who else will believe it to the extent that I do. I remember hearing about what happened on the news, and not a moment went by where I wished I could read your mind even for just a minute do understand why, truly, you did this. It doesn’t make sense to me, and I think considering the FBI would want to keep a lot of it secret, I may never know the real truth. Inshallah, may you live, and live with peace: the little that there may be. I would say wish you well, but the words don’t seem right to me.
May God find a speck in his heart to save you.