By Zahra Hankir and Natasha Doff
Are you a British Muslim? Disturbed by the two viral videos* in which Islamophobes on London buses hurl vile insults at Muslim passengers (including a pregnant woman and a disabled Turkish pensioner)?
Want to do something about it?
The above flow-chart-test will categorise you as “Basically British,” a “Moderate Muslim,” or an “Extremist Muslim.” The results will help you figure out how offensive you are to Islamophobes everywhere.**
Aspire to be Basically British (particularly if you’re an immigrant with an exotic accent), and you could guarantee yourself an Islamophobia-free*** existence..
* This video that went viral over the weekend shows a British woman screaming at a pregnant Muslim and her friend, calling them “f*cking ISIS b*tches,” and demanding they “go back to [their] country where they’re bombing every day.” A similar video can be seen here.
** Since Islamophobia will probably never disappear (because people are just horrible and because we don’t think Islam will vanish into thin air any time soon), the onus is on the Muslim community to avoid offending bigoted Brits by concealing religious preferences as much as possible in public.
As a first step toward diminishing these Public Displays of Religiosity (PDR), Muslims must be aware of how they are perceived by British society based on their looks and behavioural patterns, particularly on public transport.
*** Islamophobia is no laughing matter. Official figures show anti-Muslim hate crime in London has soared by 70 percent in the past year, with some reporting assault (a punch in the face at a bus stop in broad daylight, for example) and others saying they’ve been spat on. Most of the offences are against females. Not surprising, considering many pious Muslim women wear the hijab, making them a more visible target to Islamophobes.
Natasha Doff is a London-based journalist, Ultimate Frisbee player, and genuine white/British/blond person. Some of her close friends, including Florence of Arabia, are Basically British Moderate Muslims.