We as a nation have a lot of problems. Lack of education, poverty, inferiority complex (thank you colonialism), lack of understanding of religion and intolerance.
Now imagine, if people with these characteristics get their hands on a device and internet.
They become KEYBOARD JIHADIS.
Behind the safety of their screens , they think they are propagators and best ambassadors of their faith. Bullying , shaming and giving visuals of fire that await all the infidels consumes them and becomes their full day job.
So confident are these keyboard jihadist, that they can even tell by looking at your display picture whether some of us are headed for hell or not . I guess there is some scientific formula that involves variants like length of the shirt combined with subservience which can calculate where we stand with God.
Add Hijaab and Gol roti and Voila ! you have a direct entry to paradise. Please note that this formula only applies to women.
You must be wondering why I am linking religion to online trolling . All countries have them . No . Ours are a very special kind. Condescending and dipped with their so called understanding of religion . They shame you and appear righteous at the same. It requires a special skill. Not all of them have it. A normal troller will say ” U suck” , our desi troller would say you “You were raised badly , hell awaits you and no wonder you suck !“
A week ago , there was a fatal crash of PK-8303. In this flight was a model named Zara Abid who passed away. And it was heart wrenching to see that some of them, didn’t even spare her. Her Insta page was flooded with hell filled sermons just because her lifestyle was not something they could digest.
One of the thing that worries me most is the intolerance in our country and how unacceptable it is to have a different view.
And this sometimes makes me a stranger to my own country.
On 30th Nov., Dua Mangi was kidnapped while walking on a street in Karachi, Pakistan. She was in an apparently safer, affluent areas and walking by a tea café which she and her friends frequently visited. Out of nowhere, a car came and 4 men tried to shove her in the vehicle. Her friend Haris tried who tried to protect her was shot in the neck and is in a critical condition. As per police, this is a case of personal enmity and revenge. I am not going to elaborate more on who may be behind it but I am great deeply disturbed by how people reacted to this horrendous crime.
So while there was a national outrage and nationwide protest, there were some internet trolls who did not miss an opportunity to victim shame. Some of the comments were directed towards her attire. She was wearing jeans, she ASKED for it, Stepping out in the evening with a BOY!!! She had it coming! Character assassination and what not!
The same people who would sell their kidneys to live in the westernized society could not stop their vile comments about how a girl could actually walk on a road late evening with a boy wearing a western outfit. How dare a girl enjoy this independence aka moral corruption?
We live in society that has two extremes. It’s the Islamic way or the highway. There is no in between. and If a person who tends to choose a different approach is condemned and justified to be attacked.
After almost a week, Dua has returned home today. And I hope people are kind and sympathetic to her. She has suffered enough already. Only God knows what she has been through and please don’t ask her about it if you even have an iota of humanity in you. Do not make her relive the trauma unless she is ready to share.
I hope Haris recovers soon and it gives your conscious some peace. Dear Dua, please leave this country soon. Our people are so caught up with internalized misogyny, they will not stop blaming you for what happened.
I wish we lived in a society which was less judgmental and hypocritical. By victim shaming, we are only justifying the acts of the criminal and giving them a free pass. I hope I get to see the day when our society learns to accept each other’s differences without pointing fingers at them. Be the difference be faith or a choice of attire. If ONLY we can live and let live.