Wednesday, March 14, 2018

"Religion as a Scapegoat"

I am not immune from using religion as a scapegoat, but I know now that if I hadn’t shown up to school in a hijab that day — or any other day, for that matter — the outcome would have probably been the same. Things do look so much more attainable on the side where the Lululemon leggings and crop tops are, where you can find your reflection in romantic comedies, and where it is possible to keep religion and politics out of it because your religion and politics are not wrapped around your head. Wearing a turban is almost like crossing over. It is unsettling that a reshifting of the same cloth on the same body can be so radical.
It strikes me one day that perhaps my transformation is a regression. Why else am I willing to overlook the real problem — that even liberal Americans tend to approve of Muslims on a case-by-case basis, tend to like their Muslims as non-Muslim as possible, tend to think themselves entitled to this choosiness? Why else does my compromise with God come so easy?
Partly because of peer pressure, I end up going to prom. I am without the heartthrob and with a hijab, but I make it. I remember the dance floor most clearly. Sometimes my classmates pull me into their dance circles; sometimes I allow it and sometimes I don’t. I am wearing a baby-pink dress from J.C. Penney and a matching full-sleeved undershirt because nothing is modest enough on its own. Standing almost straight in my too-tight heels, I am fully covered and fully there.


No comments: