November 15, 2016

Love thy neighbor.

Our trip to Boston was planned before the election, before the world turned upside down last week. In the hours leading up the flight, I was wary: what would it be like to travel to a country that has loudly proclaimed that it hates people like me? How could I reconcile spending a few days eating and drinking and enjoying leisure in a nation that made it clear that I do not belong?

On the second day of our trip, I walked by the Old South Church of Boston and noticed a prominent sign proudly displayed at its entrance: Love thy (Muslim) neighbor as thyself.”

It reminded me that there was still good, here. It reminded me that amidst the hatred there is love, and this was a reminder I needed after an emotionally-tumultuous week.

“Love thy (Muslim) neighbor” sign on the Old South Church in Boston. (Photo: Claire Sadar)

I have written four different drafts for blog posts since the election, and have deleted each one. I was not ready, still am not ready, to process what the election will mean for my family and friends—Muslims, people of color, women—in the United States, and what it means for the rising racial tension and palpable bigotry in my own country. I will take time to reflect, to grieve, to understand. And then I will stand up and fight. Until then, however, I process, and take the time I need to do just that.

Here are a few things you can read, if you’re still processing, too: