The title image attached to this piece serves two purposes: (1) Like any title for any other piece of writing, it is an abstract label or heading that describes either the body of work itself, or the motivation behind it–or both; (2) It serves as a red herring for those who are either ignorant or willingly blinded by mainstream media, like a novelty gun that pops and shoots out a purple flag with the word "BANG!" written in comic book typography. Ha.
Those who are evil do not sing. I do not know the origin of this phrase–it might be part of a gypsy saying translated into Arabic, but I remember reading it once as a caption to a video of an Arab girl in a summer dress who kicks off her slippers and performs a mesmerising contemporary dance to the music of a street violinist somewhere in Italy. The person who used the aforementioned phrase presented a hypothetical situation where the girl dances in the street of an Arab country rather than somewhere in Europe, and how the stereotypical Arab male would react. It is fair to say that the stereotypical Arab male would (sadly) react in a very negative manner. Said manner can range from miniature evils such as catcalling, to a much more destructive form of sexual harassment. It is even sadder that this stereotypical Arab male might even be very proud of reacting to this dancing girl in a negative verbal or physical manner. This is because of blatant ignorance, and as a result of years of skewed religious indoctrination.
"You see them ayraabs?" Peter says. "I knew them mooselimbs were nasty!"
So loud, Peter, but it's just noise.
I often brood upon this—as a celestial hobo-prince of the abyss, because according to my understanding of these mooselimb's teachings, if a man encounters a woman dressed in somewhat revealing clothes and said woman is not his wife, the man should look away. No talking, no harassment, nothing at all. Simply put, if you do not like or agree with what you see, do not look, just carry on. You see, indoctrination—religious or other—works this way. It alters the perception of good and evil in a way that not only allows a stereotypical Arab man to abuse this girl, but it also allows a westerner to generalise the actions of said Arab man and paint an entire group of people the same colour; hate.
Those who are evil do not sing, because evil men do not see beauty. Evil men deal in hate, but that is not completely true. Because fear is an instrument of hate, and hate is a privately owned industrial hub for creating fear. I figured it out a while back, you see, those who own the machines to create hate and thus inject fear into the heart of the public, these men rule the world. We are currently being pushed by said men into a petrifying real-life rendition of rock and hard place. On the one hand, you have got the men in the black suits and the red, white, and blue distributing pictures of people who look like me under messages of terror and violence. They take away my tools and humanity. They cage me and poke and poke and poke, yet they fear me when I bare my teeth. But I am better than they will ever be. I do not bare my teeth to bite and scratch, I bare my teeth to speak the holy words of my mind. A mind that is contentiously concussed by their batons of irrelevant information and mind-numbing click-bait news, but it can still speak the truth and fight for freedom nonetheless. Yes, Mr. President, yes, Madam Prime Minister, ban my tools. Ban the instruments I use to voice the eternal cataclysms of my mind, which were caused by your greed. Ban me and mine from your promised land and alienate me from my surroundings. Ban my face and occupy my tongue and use me to even up your wobbling tables, on which you plan different methods of using my body. Dehumanize me even more and continue to inject your hate and fear into your people. I do enjoy being stared at while strolling down the cobbles. I do enjoy that double-take done by the immigration officer while flipping through my worthless passport. Oh, what life, what strife.
But of course, on the other hand, we have those deranged madmen with the beards and the guns and the loud noises. Ruthless thugs with questionable yet significant financial backing who act under the umbrella of the holy word but all they do is eat, sleep, fuck, and kill. They wave their pirate black flags and advertise the jihad, while convincing the world that this extremist movement is rooted in their religion—whatever that may be. Yet they forget that the word "Jihad" is an Arabic word meaning "to strive" for something. They forget that the strife which is mentioned in religious texts has nothing to do with violence but focuses more on the development of knowledge and civilization. But, oh, darling dear, do you not know? You think they hate the west oh so much, but they hate me even more. They hate me because I know the truth. They hate me because I am free. They hate me because I refuse to be chained by their false ideals. They hate me because I see the beauty of this world, but I am also aware of the horridness that lurks in people's hearts.
So here I am, darling, stuck between a rock and a hard place. The clock tick-tocks around and around, and I feel the pressure building up and my psyche melting away, oozing out of every orifice, seeping away into nothing. I am just about to lose all faith in humanity, and then I see her. I see Rima Baransi, a Palestinian tourist dancing to Comptine d'Un Autre Été as performed by a street violinist in Italy, and I see beauty.