Saira Bhatti

Saira Bhatti is currently a trilingual immigration caseworker in Northern Virginia and is passionate about writing as a form of activism and dialogue.

So, Is This What it Takes to Be Called a Terrorist?

One Muslim American's reaction to the terrorist attacks in Christchurch, New Zealand

The morning of March 15th was just like any other. It was Jummah, the holy day for Muslims. I was sipping chai and watching BBC early in the morning and hadn't checked any news since 9 pm the previous night. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was condemning some sort of attack. My heart sank, fearing the worst. Growing up post 9/11, I worried a Muslim had done something because in my experience of watching the news, that is what attracts headlines. But it was a mass shooting on two mosques in Christchurch.

I went numb.