Words can’t describe the magnitude of the horrific tragedy that unfolded in Manchester, UK where at least 22 people lost their lives including innocent children. It shows the barbaric nature of this evil act where even children are not excluded. Don’t the evil perpetrators also have kids of their own? I wonder. Nothing can justify this horrific act. No religion, no ideology or even animalistic way of life can condone it, no matter what.
Sadly though, when these events take place and the suspect is perceived to be a crazy Muslim, all the switches of reasoning are turned off. Emotion takes over. No questions are asked. While Muslims are themselves the target of terrorism, in addition they are perceived as the culprits. They pay the price twice.
I have noticed a similar pattern in almost all these tragedies. The person of interest is usually known to the police and is under surveillance. If so why didn’t authorities loosen the leash on him until he undertakes such a catastrophic mission which requires effort, planning, time and resources?
Is there something we are not made aware of in order to serve a particular political narrative and direction such as the rise of right wing politicians who are trying to dominate the political landscape? Are we kept in darkness over these tragedies in which authorities sometimes play roles as what happened recently with the so-called foiled terrorist attack in British Columbia?
As the Globe and Mail reported, A British Columbia couple convicted of terrorism charges have had their verdicts tossed out in a scathing court decision that flays the RCMP for its “egregious” conduct in manipulating naive suspects into carrying out a police-manufactured crime. But John Nuttall and Amanda Korody were quickly re-arrested and placed under a peace bond before finally being released. The Crown also immediately filed an appeal.
We certainly live at a time of confusion and deception. We live in an era where the word terrorism is being used by right wing politicians to enter through the back door where they portray themselves as the ultimate saviour who have what it takes to save the ship while they themselves are contributing to its sinking.
We irrespective of religion and ideology, have to overcome the media’s sensationalism and use our intellect to ask questions. Why we are not allowed to discuss the root causes of these tragedies? Why someone else talks on our behalf as if they were our representatives?
The scenarios go like this. The alleged culprits talk on behalf of Muslims in claiming responsibility and then the media brings the so-called experts to talk on behalf of everyone else. Self serving individuals have hijacked the arena where they claim to be the spokespersons of both camps: the extremists and the rest of the society.
We are courted as if we were cows with no mind of our own. A tragedy occurs; extremists claim responsibility on behalf of the entire 1.2 billion faithful community and the media with the help of self-made experts finish the conversation while the majority are sidelined and silenced while they are in a state of confusion and bewilderment.
My deep and sincere condolences to those who have lost their loved ones. They must be going through agony, mental anguish and sadness. I apologize on behalf of those misguided Muslims whom might have deliberately masterminded this tragedy. I assure you that they don’t represent the vast majority of my fellow believers who are peace loving people whose faith stipulates the killing of a person unjustly is as killing of the entire humanity. I am sorry for your loss. What had happened to your family can’t be justified.
We as humans bear the responsibility whether we are politicians who have been involved in actions that are fuelling these kinds of madness or whether we as people haven’t done enough, to reach out to our human nature to tackle extremism, injustices, invasions of other countries, supporting dictators or simply not speaking up against corruption whether at home or abroad.
The madness we are witnessing is an unhealthy phenomenon which has affected all humanity irrespective of creed and colour. Humanity has lost his human touch. May we all be guided to find common terms to work together for the betterment of humanity.
By Abubakar N. Kasim