Let us begin with this:
I don’t know the terrorist’s name. Nor do I care to know it.
Im keen on knowing the names, remembering the stories and celebrating the lives of the victims.
— Khaled Beydoun (@KhaledBeydoun) March 16, 2019
Text in tweet: “I don’t know the terrorist’s name. Nor do I care to know it.
Im keen on knowing the names, remembering the stories and celebrating the lives of the victims.”
They are fathers, mothers, grandparents, daughters and sons.
They are refugees, immigrants and New-Zealand born.
They are Kiwis.
These are the names of those who have died or are missing after the horrific acts of terror in Christchurch.
You can probably find more lists elsewhere, as they are being updated. This man, Khaled Beydoun, is keeping a list on Twitter. The number of victims has now increased to 51.
My heart goes out to the New Zealand Muslim community so disproportionately affected by this violence, as one of your local athletes puts so well:
While as cities and a nation we are all devastated by what happened yesterday, let’s not lose sight of the fact that yesterday’s terrorist attacks were targeted at the Muslim community. While it may have felt like it, we were not all at risk. We were not all unsafe. But we are all responsible for joining the wider conversation about racism, about white supremacy, about who we are as a country, and what’s actually going on.
I walked through the airport this morning and saw Muslim people going about their day in fear, including one woman that I and a couple of others sat with while she cried. I thought about how they were in fear as their community has been attacked, and how they would also be in fear if the perpetrator had been Muslim and the victims random, afraid for themselves and their children due to potential backlash from others in the community.
At what point do they get to rest? Why is everyone else able to go about their day? Why does the responsibility for such devastating actions by individuals get placed on entire communities in some cases but not others?
The reality is I know why. If you don’t know why, once we have had time to grieve, it might be time for some uncomfortable conversations.
In the mean time I implore you to support our Muslim community through donating to one of the fundraisers currently happening.
To our Muslim brothers and sisters – kei te heke ngā roimata, kei te ngākau pōuri au, ka aroha ki a koutou. I am so sorry this happened to you here. You should have been safe here, you should be safe everywhere. My heart is so heavy.
Ringatoi/Artist: Adrien Tavite
And this time no music, but to close off, A poem by Warsan Shire: What They Did Yesterday Afternoon:
what they did yesterday afternoon
by warsan shire
they set my aunts house on fire
i cried the way women on tv do
folding at the middle
like a five pound note.
i called the boy who use to love me
tried to ‘okay’ my voice
i said hello
he said warsan, what’s wrong, what’s happened?
i’ve been praying,
and these are what my prayers look like;
i come from two countries
one is thirsty
the other is on fire
both need water.
later that night
i held an atlas in my lap
ran my fingers across the whole world
where does it hurt?