Filed under: Racism, Society | Tags: Aliou Niasse, Faisal Shahzad, Islam, Islamophobia, Senegal, Times Square
My brother Aliou Niasse has saved the day. He was the first to spot smoke coming out of the Nissan Pathfinder that Faisal Shahzad intended to detonate in crowded Times Square.
Thankfully, the incompetence of Shahzab and the alertness of Niasse and two other gentlemen, both of whom are Vietnam War veterans, are the reasons why no one was hurt. The good work of the NYPD and the other law enforcement agencies must also be commended.
Much has been made about the fact that Shahzad, a Pakistani-American, is Muslim. Some of the more detestable figures have jumped on Shahzab’s faith to argue for ending immigration from Muslim-majority countries. Others have renewed calls for racial and ethnic profiling.
What’s gone somewhat unreported is that Niasse also happens to be a Muslim. The brother is from the great country of Senegal.
Niasse’s alertness in no way cancels out Shahzad’s detestable attempt at taking the life of many innocent people. But the story does offer us some perspective. Things aren’t as simple as the more delusional, myopic and hateful members of our society want us to believe.
As Frank Fredericks reminds us in an article on the Huffington Post yesterday, “Whether or not the culprit in the attempted bombing of Times Square was an angry Arab or a wacky white guy, the act is terrorism, no matter where the culprit is from or what he or she believes.”
Amen to that.
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