In the wake of the New Zealand mosque shootings, Muslim writer Vianna Goodwin penned a gut-wrenching thread about the constant weight of fear and the frequent instances of bigoted harassment she endures as a Muslim living in the U.S. in 2019. The thread, which has already been shared over 30,000 times and liked 47,000 more, was retweeted early Friday by Mark Ruffalo with a call to end global white supremacy.
White supremacy is a global enemy and it must be stopped. It is a racist, Islamophobic, antisemitic, and completely deranged ideological view of the world. These people are terrorists and must be treated as such.— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) March 15, 2019
Please read all of this ⬇️https://t.co/qGUXaTUGlA
In Goodwin’s thread, she lays out what it’s like to be afraid for her life every day, and especially every time she heads to her mosque to attend the Friday service. She details just a few of the frightening assaults on her sense of safety over the years, including a time in San Diego when someone attached firecrackers to the bottoms of several cars in her mosque parking lot.
two the underside of several cars while we all prayed. Luckily, they didn't cause the cars to explode, but it changed everything. More things happened, forcing us to hire security guards around the clock to keep us safe. Things began to happen to me outside the Mosque, and 4/— Vianna Goodwin🏳️🌈💜💖💙 (@GoodwinVianna) March 15, 2019
Later, in Texas, Goodwin’s child came home crying from school after “the World Cultures teacher told the class that all Muslims were terrorists no matter what we said to try to hide who we were.” Her children were bullied and she was harassed and threatened in public.
Because in his mind, he was the good guy with the gun, despite his t-shirt that clearly proclaimed to "shoot 'em all, and let G-d decide" with the dead bodies obvious Muslims. Nowhere is safe. And this feeling that you have right now, this is how some of us feel every time 11/— Vianna Goodwin🏳️🌈💜💖💙 (@GoodwinVianna) March 15, 2019
Under the weight of all of this Islamophobic harassment and assault, Goodwin faces intense anxiety daily, fearing the day when someone shows up at her mosque with a gun.
She continues her moving thread with a plea to non-Muslims everywhere to stand up to hateful rhetoric, whether it’s bigoted comments from family members or Islamophobic “jokes” from friends.
in this climate, either) and you say nothing, you are letting them know that their words mean nothing. You cannot be an ally if you shy away from confrontation. When your family members and friends joke about stereotypes and you avoid conflict, you feed the beast. 14/— Vianna Goodwin🏳️🌈💜💖💙 (@GoodwinVianna) March 15, 2019
“We need you all to speak out,” she writes. “We can’t be the only ones to stand up to the hate. This is the time when allies make a marked difference. We need you to stand up. To say that there is no such thing as a harmless joke or a funny stereotype. Don’t say that your father/brother/grandmother/boss didn’t mean “regular Muslims”. You can’t just let this stuff go, because it grows and it builds up until there is nowhere safe for anyone to worship. Or live. Or breathe.”
Finally, Goodwin ends by asking us all not to forget about the insidious scourge of Islamophobia tomorrow when the memory of the images from the media fade and the next tragedy takes over the headlines – because her fear can’t fade as long as Islamophobia exists.
makes you an ally. Speaking up anytime you see something, boycotting celebrities who spread antisemitism & Islamaphobia, & educating your family is how you show your allyship. We need you. Your voice matters. Please, speak up and don't stop until this world is safe for us all.— Vianna Goodwin🏳️🌈💜💖💙 (@GoodwinVianna) March 15, 2019
Though it can’t undo what happened, the outpouring of support for Goodwin and for the Muslim community in New Zealand and elsewhere is proving that the global community rejects hate, rejects Islamophobia, and supports out Muslim neighbors. The LaunchGood crowdfunding campaign to help the victims and families of the shooting has raised nearly $1,000,000 NZD in less than 24 hours and is still going strong.
Meanwhile, people everywhere are reaching out to Goodwin to let her know that they will stand up to fight Islamophobia.
Sending you love and prayers from Canada. There is no room is this world for hate. Thank you for sharing such a personal and well written post. "In a world were you can be anything, be kind."— J (@WhoopsieDaisy0) March 15, 2019
My heart breaks for you. I feel my privilege in this moment. I will do what I can to stop the hate and have the backs of all who are targets of hate. Peace be with you.— Mary Beth Jantzi (@bethjant) March 15, 2019
I live in Cape Town and can confirm exactly that. My Muslim clients and colleagues have become good friends. I am privy to one of my Muslim clients making a monthly donation into a Christian run Foundation, and this speaks volumes to the community and my experience.— Michael Theunissen (@TheOtheMichaelJ) March 15, 2019
For a change I'm happy to be saying ME TOO. I am speaking and voting for a safer world for us all. pic.twitter.com/vBEk6WyMFd— Tia Adkins (@DivinetiaTia) March 15, 2019
I agree. I was shown generosity and friendship beyond belief when I arrived in Iran penniless and without an entry visa in 2009. Try that as an Iranian arriving in Australia and see what you get.— DN Charles (@dncharles) March 15, 2019
I am so sorry. I will stand with you & speak out when I see hate, bigotry & unconscious bias. Sending you strength & love.— Tatiana Bacchus (@tbacchus20) March 15, 2019
As a lifelong atheist I don’t understand any religion. As a human I feel your fear. Thank you for sharing, this story and those like it need to be heard more.— Tom Hail 🇺🇸 (@fly44d) March 15, 2019
Deplorable beyond words. 💔/2— Shannon Rohrer 🔥 (@ShannonRohrer1) March 15, 2019
In the 80s I went to an English catholic school called St Patrick's, and one day we had to close because someone daubed "IRA lovers" all over the windows. That terrified me - and to feel that fear every single day must be horrific and exhausting. You're so brave.— Vicky (@Vicky_thelabrat) March 15, 2019
I and many other Texans stand with you against bigotry, racism and these white supremacists who have come out of their holes. Words may not help against the fear you feel for your family but know there are more of us vs bullies with guns & racist teachers. Love will win!— Kenneth Martinez (@kmwired) March 15, 2019
So much love. This is terrifying - I gladly stand for a world where this is NOT a daily truth. May our homes and hearts provide safety for our fellows xx— Cat Treadwell (@druid_cat) March 15, 2019
This hurts my heart. Thank you so much for bringing attention to it despite how frightening it can be, and I’m so sorry for all the things you’ve mentioned. No one deserves that.— Madeline Pine (@Madeline_Pine) March 15, 2019
I wish there was a vaccine against ignorance, hatred and fear. These are among the greatest ills of our time. I will share your story and amplify your voice.— Jessica McConnell (@MmeMcConnell) March 15, 2019
I left Tx where I was born & raised w my beautiful bi-racial son in lg. part bc of the bigotry & hate we rec'd. Sadly, much of that hate followed him to school here in Oregon where being called a "terrorist" for his beautiful golden skin was considered funny by some classmates.— PurpleGimp (@PurpleGimp) March 15, 2019
You are my Hero. Always a champion for right. And willing to pull my coat to something I missed. Much respect. pic.twitter.com/zg8VRd6v3b— Michael Clark (@Michaelbigchees) March 15, 2019
This is a terrible way to live, and I’m so sorry. Thank you for the thread. I hope plenty of us white folk read it.— Nope (@BrendanInBoston) March 15, 2019
I’m so sorry for your experiences. I’m so sorry our country wasn’t safe for these Kiwis. I’m ashamed, disgusted and heartbroken that this has happened. You might have seen us saying Kia kaha - it means stand strong. Stand strong today and everyday. Here in solidarity and love.— Kirsty (@kjaymcf) March 15, 2019
I’ve lived in 2 Muslim countries as well and it goes beyond disbelief that people make these horrid assumptions about people of the faith some of the kindest and most welcoming people in my life are Muslims and I will defend them for the rest of my life. I am sorry. So sorry.— Nikki (@colorsparkly) March 15, 2019
I hope you one day soon find the peace you once had in your Mosque. Everyone deserves security and safety, particularly during moments of faith. I pledge to continue to speak up against hate when I witness it - no matter how seemingly insignificant it may appear.— Suze, but as an award winning filmmaker! (@SheIsJustARat) March 15, 2019
Exactly this! I'm a Humanist, I don't believe in God. Does that mean I disrespect those who do? Nope. Will I call out those who deny people their spiritual journey? Absolutely.— Erin Robinson (@flossybunny) March 15, 2019
I go out of my way to learn about every religion because we can all grow by sharing the journey.
I’m an American. This truly breaks my heart. My next door neighbors are Muslim and they have such beautiful souls. My want is for people to be truly tolerant instead of just saying it. So tired of all the hate in this world. Thank you for sharing this. 💕💞💗— Robin Meshelle (@Cajuarobin) March 15, 2019
I've been staring at the blank comment space for 10 minutes now, not knowing what to say or how to properly express my feelings after reading this thread.— Nikki Knack 💜 (@NikkityKnack76) March 15, 2019
I love you. Thats all I can think to say. I love you as a fellow human being. Thank you for sharing ❤
I'm so sorry. I lived through the Balkan wars and saw the carnage produced by hate. We've got to learn that hate solves NOTHING. May Allah keep you and yours in His grace, ameen.— Actually Just Ana (@merge_9) March 15, 2019
Go ahead and cry if you need to. Then kick Islamophobia right up the ass.