Editor: Scrolling through the news articles, all I feel is sorrow. Instead of people being valued and understood, the invisible borders of misunderstanding, apathy, and hatred are rising.
Turkey, Russia, Austria, and France have explicitly stated they will not be accepting Afghan refugees. These countries have all forgotten that there is no guarantee that they will not be placed in a similar situation as the refugees, desperate for help.
Past every single form of identity, we are all biologically human and we are social creatures. Our identities in the social world? Mother, father, son, daughter, cousin, friend, relative, neighbor. These identities exist in every person, every home, every neighborhood, every state, and, most importantly, in every country. The question is: Will the world understand quickly enough that all refugees are just distortions in the mirror in another setting? Not only is every refugee similar to you, it means every refugee, one who is forced to leave their home because of burning holes in their safety, is similar to each other.
When will the connection be made that those seeking safety from the southern border, from Afghanistan, or from anywhere else all deserve help and emphasis from the world? In the words of His Holiness Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Worldwide Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, “The disorder and corruption widespread in the world today have distressed every peace-loving person. Everyone with sympathy and compassion towards humanity is astonished and worried about the current state of affairs in the world.”
It is sad that these words are from 2015, yet still relevant today. My only hope is that we look toward these people with a sense of empathy, understanding, and a will to help.
Leeza Ahmed, South Riding