Media Silence on Alawadi’s Death Staggering

In the last week or so I have turned on MSNBC to find myself flooded with the “latest” on the Trayvon Martin shooting. Most of the newest information is rehashed and still leads me to the conclusion that George Zimmerman should be charged with the murder of the 17-year-old kid. A kid that only had Skittles and ice tea in his pockets. A kid that was talking with his girlfriend on the phone in the moments before his demise.

This tragedy should generate the attention, outrage, and activist support we see now. Hell, it should receive so much more and the magnifying glass of the press needs to be amplified.

But another tragedy currently sits on the back burner. It might explode onto the front pages in the coming days, but it will once again be there only because of activist outrage.

Outside of San Diego, Calif., a 32-year-old mother of five fell victim to a horrific hate crime. Shaima Alawadi’s family took her off life support on March 24 two days after her 17-year-old daughter, Fatima, found her bludgeoned to death with a note saying, “Go back to your country, you terrorist.”

The family found a similar note soon after they moved in but brushed it off as a prank. Care2′s Julie did a great job covering it when it first made the news.

An innocent young mother beaten because of her heritage and for wearing a hijab. Meanwhile, her husband has helped this country’s soldiers prepare for their time in the Middle East. He was doing a patriotic duty and she is killed because a few ignorant people thought they could.

Yet, where is this in the media’s outrage? Where are the protests?

A Facebook group is encouraging women to wear a hijab at some point this month. But it only has 10,000 likes thus far. In a nice piece for the Washington Post, Omar Sacirbey notes that a Christian woman will wear one on Easter Sunday and others that are participating:

“I am a devout Christian and will be wearing hijab as a prayer in April,” wrote Karen Streeter of Pasadena, Calif., next to her photo of herself in a hijab. “Growing up, I was bullied because I was different from others, so I have had a taste of what it is like to be harassed because of how you look.”

Her killer(s) remain at large and unknown. That might be a factor in the lack of outrage as Trayvon’s killer is known and still free of any charges.

Typically, the likes of Nancy Grace and other “news” shows cover the disappearance of blond-haired, white women. But the sheer shock of Trayvon’s death and the bamboozlement by the local district attorney’s office pushed it into our conscience. Progressive pundits and activists like Lawrence O’Donnell or Van Jones have remarked about the racism in this case. Trayvon being young and black comes off as a threat because society teaches us so. Over the last decade or so, our society has also been teaching us to fear Muslims. Especially when politicians tell us Muslims are not Americans, like Congressman Peter King did.

I strongly believe a large factor in the silence comes from an unsaid bias against people of the Islamic faith. For the last decade, we have fought a war on terrorism aimed at Islamic countries. So-called leaders raised hell at a proposed community center run by an Imam near the site of 9/11. On television, pundits routinely equate Islam with terrorism. Being a Muslim means you must be a terrorist. It was written on the note next to Awaladi’s body and the mainstream media’s lack of outrage says it as well.

As much as Jonathan Alter wants to link Ralph Nader to Trayvon’s death, the connections in this case are actually clear. A decade of war pushes the hatred of another group and religion into our subconscious. We fear the unknown other. Fear drives us to hatred and violence. Even if someone looks, acts, or believes differently, we must come to the conclusion of being one and same. Human, fragile and in this world together.

Ultimately, Trayvon could not walk home wearing a hoodie and Shaima could not walk outside her own home wearing a hijab.

Originally posted on The Political is Personal but expanded upon here.

Related Stories:

Muslim Woman Beaten to Death in Her Own Home

Don’t Like Muslims? You Must Be A Fox News Viewer

Rep. Peter King: American Muslims Aren’t “American”

Photo taken by haemengine


Annmari Lundin
Annmari L5 years ago

Vlasta M: You covered most of what I planned to type. Only want to add one thing. It'll be eight Thursdays in a row before I put anything on my head. Not wearing a hat, let alone a hijab! I'm proud of my 5 mm long hair and will never cover it. And it's a misguided empathy or solidarity to protect women who wears head and body covers. How come liberals keep running eachother over to preach understanding and solidarity with a religion that preaches hate and enslavement of women?

Frank Hanline
Frank Hanline6 years ago

I take it Aaron K that you're not going to retract this piece as the cops in El Cajon are looking at the woman's husband and this as an honor killing.

When are you going to point out that the number of deaths of muslim women are off the scale for "honor killings" vs someone "targeting them due to their religion". Don't even give me this is a "racial thing" as religions aren't racial

Waiting for you to own up and not be like Fox News

Carol Dreeszen
Carol Dreeszen6 years ago

I can think of a lot more and worse stories in this country where the media are what you might call non existent when it comes to information that should be told to the public! They are only johnny on the spot when it it to their benefit or the benefit of the traitor in chief in this country! Besides there is too much about that killing that just don't make sense to me!! It sounds too much like an honor killing than just some wacko deciding they didn't like this woman and decided to off her because she was from a different country! In reality how many killings in this country with this reasoning has there been!? Waiting to hear the numbers!

Frank Hanline
Frank Hanline6 years ago

From Sam Harris on islame

Frank Hanline
Frank Hanline6 years ago

So will those who have slandered the US as a whole perhaps take a step back and smell what you've been shoveling?

OBTW, for you all:

It is 1 of the 4 Horsemen, (Dawkins, Dennet, Hitchens and Harris) in this case Harris, speaking on how islam is not a religion of peace. To be sure, none of the Abrahamic religions are religions of peace, how can they be?

Abraham, from Ur, a Sumerian city, worshiped a minor war deity of the Sumerians and built it up over all others. No? Check out the words Nephilim Nefilim, Elohim among others in the buy-bull and how it relates to Sumerian myths

So dear readers, all of the "three great, bloody and violent mono-theistic religions" from Abraham are just retelling of myths from even older "pagan religions". Don't even get me started on the christ myths (Horus, Mithra and so many more) this is not the venue

Vlasta M.
Vlasta M6 years ago

Anybody who had read Koran and Hadith and learned about history of Islam and Muhamed KNOWS that it is a supremacist ideology of hate of non-Muslims similar to supremacist Nazi ideology with delusional Jew hatred that led to Holocaust.

In addition to teaching hatred of thte Jews, Christians and "infidels" Islam also promotes apartheid, misogyny, pedophilia, polygamy and murder for Allau Akbar. Islam condones "honor" murder which is on rise in Western countries where there are large numbers of Muslim immigrants who had brought with them sharia customs, which are incompatible with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and/or US Constitution.

Islam MUST REFORM and not be whitewashed by ignorant non-Muslims and by Muslims who want to boss US around and promote their lies (Takkya) about Islam as a "peaceful" religion. Islam had been violent from the very beginning when Mohamed conquered people by sward, staring with a gruesome murder (by beheading) of 900 Jews from Medina, who would not bow this vile guy as THEIR prophet. He also married a 6 y old Aisha, as one of his 12 wives when he was 51 and had sex with her when she was 9 years old girl. With such a role model for Muslims, you do not need to convince any sane person that Islam MUST REFORM if it wants to be considered as any other religion.

Carel W.
Carel W.6 years ago

There is more to Alawadi's death hope it is investigated. Sad day in media as bullies continue assault on public with news meant to increase ratings and alter for own agenda.

Ken W.
Ken W6 years ago

This is all wrong !!!!!!!!!!!

Phyllis B.
Jennifer Ward6 years ago

Tom E- I lived in San Diego in 1991. If you walked home after dark the black guys would yell out 'hey snowbunny we're coming to get you white bitch' and stuff like that.

There are racist imbeciles in all societies. In fact, the presumption of racist tendencies in others is racist in itself.

Frank Hanline
Frank Hanline6 years ago

@ Aaron Krager:

I second Beth S on her question about you owning up to your prejudice.

Or are you just a mealy mouth who says lots but backs nothing up

See I want her killer to come to justice. The problem is even int he US, 30% of all women are killed by their husband or other partner. In islamic countries that is almost 90% save in times of war

So why don't you tell us how you're going to retract this piece that's only fit for Fox News in its accusations and pronouncements with little if any real evidence