This post recently came up on my Facebook news feed. My equilibrium is deeply unsettled for the following reasons:
That a campaign such as Reclaim Australia exists in the first place. especially given that it is not run by Australian Indigenous communities.
That Reclaim Australia is actually a fancy term for anti-Islam.
Throughout my blog posts, I have mentioned time and time again that xenophobia, intolerance and bigotry are not exclusive to one particular race, religion nationality etc. You don’t have to be white to be racist and intolerant…you simply just have to be racist and intolerant to be racist and intolerant. It’s pretty self-explanatory.
You don’t have to agree with something to be respectful towards it. If you can’t be respectful, then be indifferent, but by no means actively go out of your way to be disrespectful. Is it really too much to ask for?
To recap, the movie “Not Without my Daughter” is about an American woman (and her daughter) who needs to escape from her husband in Iran. This film has now apparently set a precedent for the fate of all Western-women who date/marry Middle-Eastern men (sarcasm intended). I discuss this particular phenomenon in one of my previous posts titled “Not Without My Daughter”.
Given the way in which this film has depicted Iran, I can imagine how it could seem somewhat unfathomable for a woman of Western origin to live in Iran with her Iranian husband and children by choice. Nonetheless, I met such a woman during my travels in Iran.
This woman I met was from England. Her husband was originally from Iran, but held a British citizenship. The couple has two children: a teenage son and a daughter under the age of 10. This woman told me that it took her a long time to convince her husband to move their family to Iran. Her Iranian husband was, at least at first, against moving with his wife and children to his motherland. When I asked the woman why she chose to move to Iran, she answered with the following simple statement- “to have a better life”. Usually this answer is the precise reason why Iranian people choose to live abroad.
The woman told me that her children faced racism at school in England from both peers AND teachers. The entire family unit experienced racism and Islamohobia in England. She went on to follow that neither she nor her children experienced any such racism in Iran. She also told me that the financial position of the family was improved by moving to Iran- her husband was able to make a greater profit, giving his wife the opportunity to work less and spend more time on their children, as well as giving the whole family an opportunity to travel more.
I am sure that there are unfortunate fates of Western women like that of Betty Mahmoody (the protagonist of the film “Not Without My Daughter”); the movie is after all based on a true story. Conversely I also presume that there are Western women, like the woman I spoke to, who have exercised their free will and have chosen to lead a happy life with their family in Iran. The only difference is that Hollywood won’t make a movie out of the fate of the woman I spoke to, as it did with the unfortunate fate of Betty Mahmoody.
Although I am new to the blogging world and am completely incompetent at using technology (I only recently learned how to make hyperlinks), I believe that my message of peace and tolerance needs to be heard. To learn a little bit more about my background please read my post titled “A little bit about myself…”. To learn more about why I started this blog, please read my post titled“Introduction…”.