Words || Tess Connery
On Wednesday the 29th of March, a verbal Islamaphobic attack took place on the Macquarie University campus. The Macquarie Uni Muslim Students Association was holding a bake sale in front of the campus Boost as a fundraiser for Somali Faces, a charity for the Somalian famine. At 2 p.m., a person described by witnesses as “a tall, white male” began chanting “Trump! Trump! Trump!” and “Trump is our President” towards the stall that was being staffed by two Muslim women. After the chant, he walked towards the Co-op book shop and met another person described as a white male. Witnesses reported that the second male said that he agreed with Trump, before the two men turned and walked further away to the Co-op.
Islam Dabbagh, one of the women running the stall, told Grapeshot that “It was offensive obviously, because you know the agenda behind it and why they said that, but you try and ignore it… Our goal is for the Somalian charity.” Another woman on the stall, Suda Hossain, said that “we’re asking people to come together and help the underprivileged. To say that, it’s just showing that they don’t have any humanity for underprivileged people. It’s not about us… to say that and be chanting it to everyone, it’s an attack on us and an attack on people who do not have the voice to say anything.”
A spokesperson from the university commented with the following: “Macquarie University is very proud of its diverse community and is committed to religious acceptance and the free of expression of faith. The University does not tolerate behaviour of this nature. Students and staff are expected to adhere to the University’s Code Of Conduct which clearly outlines that misconduct of this kind is unacceptable and may be subject to disciplinary action. We encourage students to report this type of behaviour immediately to Campus Security so that an investigation can be carried out.”
This incident comes in the wake of an Islamaphobic attack back in January, involving verbal harassment and attempted property damage against a Muslim graduate and her husband.