Read this story about the harrassment and pressure tactics used against Sumayyah Din, a Muslim American running for the student senate at UC Berkeley. Din had the audacity of using the following hashtags when explaining her campaign goals that she posted on her FaceBook wall.
#DIN4THEWIN, #JoinTheDinasty #DINTIFADA #DOIT4THEDIN
It's obvious to anyone with a sense of proportion that these were all harmless wordplays on her name. Certainly it couldn't be read, in the context of the campaign, as a mean-spirited attempt to attack others. Especially given her platform:
ALL students at Cal to have a voice in our student government and I want to represent my communities in this space. My vision encompasses a collaborative force on campus that utilizes our collective identities for an inclusive campus climate.
Unfortunately, the Zionist group, "Bears For Israel" didn't see it that way. They wrote that the hashtag #DINTIFADA marginalizes Jewish students and claimed that her use of the hashtag makes them feel unsafe. They demanded that she apologize for the use of the term in this manner.
It is beyond me how any mentally stable adult could be made to feel unsafe by the hashtag #DINTIFADA in the context that Din use it. Frankly, I don't believe those who claim her use of this hashtag feel unsafe at all. Their expressions of fear is intended solely to garner sympathy and is about as real as these soccer falls.
Or as real as this wrestling fall.
This really isn't about Din's hashtag creating genuine fear amongst Zionists. This is about the claim of such fear being used to try to silence or discredit criticism of Israel. Playing the fake fear card is very similar to playing the fake anti-Semitism card.
But the Bears For Israel demand was only the beginning. Another Zionist group, StandWithUs took her comment out of context and published a picture of Israelis murdered in a suicide bombing, attached her name to it, and added the tagline "Intifada is murder, Not a campaign slogan". The implication being that Din either supported terrorism or at the very least, she thought murdered Jews were amusing. The StandWithUs Facebook post maliciously tying Din to terrorism garnered 1,100 likes and 375 shares within 8 hours. The following comments were posted in response to protrayal of Din's hastag.
Karma is coming for this ignorant brainwashed little girl, definitely not peaceful.
I would like to be able to comment on her page. This girl is a POS [piece of shit]
I thought Muslims were peaceful. [Response from another commenter:] Yup the dead ones !
These terrorists must be eradicated
SOMEONE SHOULD ELIMINATE HER FROM THE EARTH.
a frustated ,sexually repressed woman
It’s time to ship the islamic migrants back to their deserts!
She is a terrorist.
wanna bet she’s muslim
Obama promotes this kind of anti Semitism.
[I]ts all from the moslems going to the school and spewing their hate at which the stupid liberals feel sorry for the moslems. And since Moslems are allowed to lie, the libs eat it up and not doing there own research..
All Jewish benefactors should stop giving money to these schools.
Maybe the Mossad should send her a greeting card.
It seems to me that are immigration quotas should be looked at for others NOT just Hispanics
Sumayya Din? Sounds like a good American name. Her folks must have come over on the Mayflower then.So can this dingo, Sumayya Din do the same in her country and not get penalized if not something worse?
Islamic oil money………………
These savages don’t qualify as human therefore they don’t deserve a trial, just a speedy execution.
time to fucking deport these shitbags
Those who post such comments have become so immersed in their hatred that they have lost their souls. It is also clear which side has engaged in terrorist threats and which side has a genuine reason for fear. (hint for the terminally stupid--it is not Din.)
Suppose I'm wrong in my assessment that Din's #DINTIFADA hash tag didn't cause fear amongst Zionists? Suppose there were people who were genuinely afraid because of her use of this tag. Does that mean we should condemn her for using it? Must she be forced to apologize for her callousness? Should such speech be suppressed?
Some have argued that we should make it illegal to draw disparaging cartoons of Muhammad since such cartoons enrage Muslim extremists to the point of violence. In order to avoid violence, the argument goes, we must give in to their demands and prevent these cartoons from being published. The counterargument to this is to note that this amounts to submitting to the heckler's veto. We set a bad precedent once we allow a relatively small number of extremists to dictate to us what we are allowed to say. If we submit here, then what is to stop extremist pro-lifers from killing pro-choice opponents and threatening to kill some more unless abortion, and abortion advocacy, is made illegal? Certain passages in the Qu'ran enrage some people. What if they started killing people while threatening to continue their killing streak unless the Qu'ran was banned? Once you give in to one extremist group, you open the door to other extremists making demands.
The #Dintifada situation encompasses both elements of the heckler's veto and its exact opposite--the wimp's veto. Those who twist Din's words and use the distorted version of what she said as a basis to harass and intimidate her are indeed trying to shut her up through non-governmental enforcement of the heckler's veto. And those who condemn her and demand she apologize for using words that instill fear amongst Zionists are trying to shut her up or discredit her through the wimp's veto. They are using their fear to try to bully her into retracting what she has said. If we give into the wimp's veto then we set a precedent that would allow the most timid amongst us to dictate what we say. Those who feared Islam could ban the Qu'ran. Those who were offended by or feared gays could outlaw homosexuality. Those with coulrophobia could ban clowns. (On the plus side, this would get rid of Senator Tom Cotton, the leader of the 47 Senators who signed a letter to Iranian leaders telling them that the U.S. was an unreliable negotiating partner and who expressed dismay that Iran had taken control of Tehran.) And those with erythrophobia could get us to remove the red signals from all traffic lights.
The proper response to those who demand that we give in to their unreasonable and almost certainly feigned fears is not to give in, but to mock them. So if you see someone from "Bears for Israel", give her a baby's pacifier, a security blanket, and a teddy bear; and reassure her that the boogeyman is not out to get her.
Update 3/16/15: I just saw saw Sumayyah's response to the death threats and harassment against her. Read what she has to say here.
I also just this tweet by Eamon Murphy
if the logic of #dintifada objections is valid, then no one should be able to say 'israel' for fear of triggering arab students
— eamon murphy (@epmurph) March 12, 2015
Well said, Eamon. Well said. I should have mentioned this point in my article and I thank you for making it for me.