Target: Tessa Kum, Australian writer
Goal: Thank writer for launching social media campaign countering potential anti-Muslim hate crimes
After a recent terror attack in Sydney, Australia, fears mounted that members of the Muslim community in Australia would face hate-motivated repercussions from Islamophobes. To counter that very real possibility, writer Tessa Kum started a Twitter campaign to express support for and help the Muslim community. Thank Kum for fighting intolerance and bigotry.
A Muslim man with a history of violent crimes and sympathies to the terror organization Daesh (also known as ISIS) recently launched a terror attack in Sydney, Australia during which he tragically killed two people. After the attack was over, Tessa Kum, a writer living in Sydney, launched a Twitter campaign to fight back against the spikes in hate crimes against the Muslim community that occur all too often following terror attacks. Using the hashtag #IllRideWithYou, Kum offered to ride public transportation with Muslim men and women who were apprehensive about riding alone for fear of anti-Muslim harassment from other commuters, and encouraged others to offer to do the same. At last count, the hashtag was mentioned in over 290,000 tweets and had begun to trend worldwide–all in under 12 hours–and has received positive responses from Australia’s Muslim community.
In a mainstream media environment that constantly conflates all Muslims with terrorists, it is inspiring to see a grassroots social media effort gain so much traction and offer such a positive and unifying counter-narrative. Sign the petition below to thank Kum for kicking off the campaign.
Dear Ms. Kum,
I am writing you today regarding the Twitter campaign you kickstarted, #IllRideWithYou. Specifically, I wanted to take the time to thank you for launching it.
As I’m sure you know, whenever terror attacks perpetrated by Muslim men and women occur in places like Australia or the United States, the wider Muslim community often becomes the target of hate-motivated retaliations from people who refuse to acknowledge that not all Muslims are terrorists. As soon as it was reported that the gunman in this case in Sydney was displaying a Daesh flag, Muslims and non-Muslims alike pleaded for cooler heads to prevail and reminded everyone that this man’s actions were not indicative of the attitudes of the overwhelming majority of Muslim people. Your campaign was a hugely successful part of this effort, and is especially important because it encourages active, real-life advocacy and action to counter harassment and hate.
With any luck, the #IllRideWithYou campaign will effect positive solidarity in Sydney’s communities and help halt instances of harassment that Muslim people experience every day. Not only that, but it could provide a template for other communities to use to foster solidarity and counter hate when similar events take place. Thank you for kicking off such a proactive solidarity movement, and for using the attention it has brought to you to funnel media outlets to members of the Muslim community who they should be interviewing.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: AnthonyWinning via Wikimedia Commons