In yet another incident of Islamophobia, a disturbing moment between two Missouri middle school students was captured on camera.
A video, featuring two girls who study at the Long International Middle School in St. Louis, was shared more than 1,000 times on Facebook.
One of the two girls can be seen and heard spewing derogatory remarks and expletives at the other girl who was wearing hijab – a head covering worn by some Muslim women.
It was not that difficult to figure out the student’s verbal assault was religiously-motivated as she could also be heard yelling “go back to where the [expletive] you came from."
Moreover, the video showed the victim putting her in face in her hands and asking the bully to stop screaming at her.
The vile video was originally uploaded on Snapchat. It was later posted on Facebook by a person who said they are trying to spread awareness about bullying.
The school, which is a part of the St. Louis Public School District (SLPS), has reportedly taken notice of the incident.
Communication Director of SLPS Meredith Pierce issued this statement regarding the incident:
“Saint Louis Public Schools is aware of an incident that occurred at Long International Middle School on Wednesday in which a student took a cell phone video of one student using inappropriate speech and harassing another student,” she said. “The video was posted to social media Wednesday night, and when this incident was brought to our attention on Thursday, the district immediately took steps to address the situation. The District is handling this matter in accordance with State law and District policies regarding bullying. SLPS has a ZERO tolerance policy when it comes to bullying, and we are committed to providing safe and caring schools for ALL students to learn.”
However, there hasn’t been any public announcement of the disciplinary actions the district might take against the young offender.
Muslims who wear headscarves in America are often subjected to verbal insults, threats and, sometimes, even physical intimidation. For instance, a nurse wearing a hijab in Houston was driving back home when a white man allegedly started shouting anti-Muslim slurs at her before proceeding to attack her. In another incident of similar nature, a Muslim woman was verbally and physically abused by three drunkards in New York City.
It is even more alarming the deep-rooted resentment for other religions and their symbol of identity is blatantly displayed in educational institutes. This goes to show how perpetrators have little fear of the authorities, which makes sense as such incidents of violating privacy of Muslim women or religiously profiling them or disparaging them usually goes unpunished.
Since President Donald Trump’s election victory, hate crimes in the U.S. are on the rise and incidents like these, especially in the vicinity of a middle school, are not something that should be taken lightly.
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