Facebook joins Taliban, ISIS in ignoring value of Muslim lives

Karishma Manglani Apr 3, 2016
Editorials featured in the Forum section are solely the opinions of their individual authors.

There was a bomb blast on March 22 in Brussels. 32 people were injured in the blast.

Immediately, almost all western media reacted to this, and was shocked by these suicide bombs led by ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria).

On March 20, that same week, there was an alleged suicide bombing led by ISIS in Istanbul, Turkey. 36 injured. There was another one on March 13, in Ankara, with a deadly car bomb that exploded. In Lahore, there was another bomb blast this week, where 75 people were killed and over 340 injured by the Taliban.

Yet most Facebook posts I saw and most news articles popularized by the Western media described the tragedy in Brussels. When they were both equally tragic tragedies, only one was cared for. Where was the discussion on Turkey? Lahore? Where were the condolences towards those who face this more regularly than in Western countries? Where was the extensive media coverage?
Where was my profile picture filter with the Turkish Flag?

Our world values some tragedies over others. This very similar situation occurred with the attacks in Paris last year.
The attacks non-western countries face from terrorist groups are often much larger than the ones western countries face. This may be a once a year occurrence in Brussels, but it’s a nearly monthly battle in Turkey, Pakistan, Palestine, Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan.

This speaks to an imperialistic mindset that exists within our society — non-western countries, bodies, and people do not matter as much. The value of humanity that we hold today is inherently placed upon those who have the power to fight this, not those who don’t.

Part of this is Islamophobia, and the attacks by the Islamic militant groups certainly don’t help. Do people know that ISIS is a larger threat to Muslims than to non-Muslims? Do people know that average Muslim people are targeted by both militants and backlash from the west? Our media is dominated by what we see and who controls it.

The fact is that tragedies like these are daily in some places. But this isn’t often enough for the western media to report it or to care.
My heart goes out to the victims of Paris and Brussels, but also to the victims of the Lahore, Istanbul, and Ankara attacks.

We can’t say some lives matter more than others, or let distance from a tragedy obscure the humanity.

So let’s change the discourse, educate ourselves, and look at where our news is coming from. Because, quite frankly, #JeSuisSickOfThisShit.