I Cried

As the news reports surrounding the #MuslimBan rolled in, I didn’t know what to do or how to respond. I knew there were people around the city, state, country, and world who had it worse; that they had more reasons than I to be afraid, outraged, and anxious. Nonetheless, the following is an account of sorts of what followed the initial shock and numbness.

 

I cried.

Not just a single tear. Not just a slight sniffle.

I cried.

 

I cried for my Muslim friends, my brothers and sisters

Scared because they had just been labeled aliens in their own home

No longer welcomed by the government that had sworn to protect them

Asking now if they will be forced to leave

Or maybe thanking Allah they have their citizenship

 

I cried for the refugees

Homeless, lonely, tired, and poor

Being forced to trade in physical suffering for emotional torture

Being forced to find a new home in an airport terminal, holding room, or on a plane

All they want is to feel safe

 

I cried for the people praising the ban

How can they not see

Are they so scared of aliens they can’t see

That many of these people are just as scared, just as worried

Are they so distrusting they don’t believe the statistics

Those beautiful numbers that demonstrate none of these new people want to hurt them

 

I cried for the unjust actions

People with green cards and visas

All the legal paperwork, a culmination of months of work to get it all passed through

Denied entrance to the country many of them served in a war

Or lived in for decades

Families now split, time lost, fear rampant

 

I cried for my family

Relatives in Shiraz and Tehran I’ve never met

And now wonder if I ever will

Unable to travel and see the place of my ancestry

The hospital my grandfather worked in, the city my father was born in

 

I cried for myself

The son of an immigrant

The grandson of immigrants

Feeling now as if the country only approves of part of me

The cis-American part

The part that grew up in the suburbs; that spoke English; that praised Jesus on Sundays

Do they approve of the other part

The one that longs to speak Farsi

The one that is represented by my dark skin, hair, & eyes

The part that eats Fesenjān and Kubideh

The part that longs to see Persepolis

 

I cried

Fully aware that I am one of the lucky ones.

 

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Note: My father, uncle, & grandparents immigrated here in the late 1960’s from Iran, one of the countries currently listed on the President’s executive order. My family exists today because of immigration. Thankfully they are all here and not planning trips anytime soon. I, as I hope many of you,  in support of our Muslim and Middle-Eastern brothers & sisters,  stand up against this injustice. RESIST. -BP

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