Even An Attack On Defenseless Women Can’t Muster Sympathy

"I'm used to people looking at me on the street," Sara Ebrahim said of what happens when she wears a hijab in public. "But I don't want to get used to people attacking me."

Female Muslim Students

Three Muslim female college students were verbally abused and spat at during a ride in New Jersey train.

21-year-olds Yasmeen Alsaker and Sara Ebrahim and 25-year-old Tania Khaliq were wearing the traditional Muslim headdresses, the hijab, aboard the Newark Light Rail, when a man sitting behind them started swearing at them and spat at one of the girls. Even though there were a lot of people on board the train, no one stood up to help the girls.

The full account of the incident is detailed in Yasmeen Alsaker’s Facebook page.

"I didn't stop staring at him," she said. "We thought he was going to really going to attack us."

Although the incident left the women shaking, they were grateful for the police and the quick actions they had taken to apprehend Pietropaolo.

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In her Facebook account, Alsaker expressed concern that if Donald Trump, infamous for his anti-Muslim rhetoric, is elected, people like Pietropaolo will be free to treat minorities as they please.

"I'm used to people looking at me on the street," Ebrahim said, referring to what happens when she wears the hijab in public. "But I don't want to get used to people attacking me." 

The attack on the three students is the latest in the surge of hate crimes targeting Muslims around the world. A few days ago, a women’s scarf was ripped off her face outside King’s College London in a hate-inspired attack against a group of Muslim students.

The fact that none of the passengers in the train thought to help out the young women is testament to how xenophobia is gradually prevailing over reason in the U.S. A recent study showed more than half of Americans believe immigration, even legal immigration, is a threat to the country’s sovereignty.

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