Today, I Wish.

Hatred starts with thoughts, and ends with violence.

The Canberra Times

By Walid Rashid, Staff Writer

Tragedy struck one of the world’s most peaceful nations, once again shocking the world with the inhumanity of man. March 15, 2019, will be forever marked as a day when 50 were brutally killed and multiple were wounded. Many of the victims were elderly and children.

When asked about what should be done as a result of the New Zealand terrorist attack, Juliet Chukwu, a junior at George Ranch said, “Gun violence isn’t just an American thing but a worldwide issue. New Zealand’s quick response to banning semi-automatic weapons is an example of what should be done in America to stop mass shootings.”

The gunman, a 28-year-old Australian man, who sought many things from his act of terror. A man who should have no name, a terrorist and an extremist. Instead, we should be focused on remembering the victims and creating a world where we focus on the humans who enkindle positive and good.

I wish we weren’t so focused on the history of the gunman, and what turned him into the monster he became.

I wish I heard more about remembering the victims, rather than the world focusing on when and where his radical thoughts started.

I wish the media focused on the people who are striving for a change.

I wish we stopped associating terrorism with religion.

As a Muslim American, this is my perspective. Yes, there have been many terrorist attacks associated with people who use the name of my religion for their cruel disgusting crimes. However, that is not what Islam preaches. The first victim who was shot by the gunman welcomed him into the mosque by welcoming saying “hello brother” before being brutally murdered. If that isn’t a better example of how Islam teaches peace then I truly don’t know what is.

I wish we stopped associating terrorism with religion.

— Walid Rashid

The killer knew what day to pick as Friday is the day Muslims show their devotion by attending the weekly Sabbath. He live streamed the massacre to create a sense of fear within Muslims and to inspire others who hold on to the ideology of Islamophobia. Over 1.5 million videos have been removed from Facebook alone of his live stream. However, videos of the massacre still continue to show up.

“The videos were inhumane and I believe they were live streamed to instill fear in Muslims,” said Daniela George, a senior at George Ranch.

Islamophobia is now apart western society. Since the occurrence of 9/11 Muslims have been blamed for over two decades for crimes that have been committed by those who use the name of Islam. This has fueled terrible ideas and has created racism within communities.

“Islamophobia has been around for a long time,” said Jessica Morcilla who is a junior at George Ranch.

I write this article because one must stand for their religion and community. If a Christian person is attacked then we must all defend them as a united whole, as for any religion. Therefore, I am standing up for my community as a Muslim because we were attacked. Therefore, today I wish we would all stand as a united whole because if we are to conquer racism then we must start within ourselves and create a community that will stand up for each other.