At this point in the (still very early, despite what Debate Tedium 2015 makes it feel like) 2016 Presidential Campaign, one would think there's not much that could come out of Donald Trump's mouth that would be considered all that shocking anymore. Well, one would be wrong: In response to the horrific attacks on Paris on Nov. 13 — and in response to the vague, fearful notion of "terrorism" in general — Trump advocated for a "special registration" of Muslims in America, aka, forcing millions of Americans to carry special identification so that everyone knows to be afraid of them, and so fear-based assumptions and discrimination can be carried out more quickly and with greater ease. (If this practice sounds familiar at all, it's probably because of, you know, Nazis and the most horrible, violent and downright disgusting moment in world history.)
Trump told Yahoo News, "We’re going to have to do things that we never did before. And some people are going to be upset about it, but I think that now everybody is feeling that security is going to rule." The problem is, it has been done before, and the result was the genocide of an estimated 6 million people. So there's that little thing to consider.
There's a silver lining: Just when you're about to explode with rage or shake your head clean off your body in complete disbelief, you come across responses like Marwa Balkar's, and your faith in humanity is restored. Marwa is a young muslim American woman, who took it upon herself to create her own ID badge, answering Trumps call for a "safer America". Her badge? A peace sign.
A picture of her and her badge were accompanied by a beautiful, poignant and powerful post — leaving us all wondering why a thoughtful and insightful young woman like Marwa isn't running for president, but a fear-mongering, stereotype-inciting man like Trump, is.
Dear @realdonaldtrump, My name is Marwa, and I am a Muslim. I heard you wanted us the start wearing ID badges, so I decided to choose one for myself. I am not easily identifiable as a #Muslim just by looking at me, so my new badge will let me display proudly who I am. I chose the peace sign because it represents my #Islam. The one that taught me to oppose #injustice and yearn for #unity. The one that taught me that killing one innocent life is equivalent to killing humanity. I heard you want to track us as well. Great! You can come with me on my Cancer Awareness walks at the local middle school, or you can follow me to work where it's my job to create happiness. You can also see how my local mosque makes PB&J sandwiches for the homeless and hosts interfaith dinners where everyone is welcome. Maybe then you'll see that me being Muslim doesn't make me any less American than you are. Maybe if you walk in my footsteps, you can see that I am not any less human than you are. Salaamu alaikum
And Marwa isn't the only Muslim-American responding to Trumps atrocious comments with poise, class and a dose of (sadly) necessary perspective. Here are the best mic drops sent via social media since Donald decided to open his overly offensive mouth.
"I Already Carry A Special ID Badge"
This United States Marine Corps veteran was quick to put The Donald back in his place. (Hopefully a place where we don't have to hear him speak every again? Is that too much to hope for? OK, this was a great mic drop, but it wasn't a magic one.)
"I Take Care Of Your Sick"
There are no words. Just applause. Thank you for taking care of us, Doctor!
"I Serve And Protect My Community"
Could you imagine if this officer's idea of "protecting and serving" only applied to people who shared his religious or cultural beliefs?
"I'm An Affiliate Volunteer At A Most Prestigious University"
I mean, Princeton is no Fordham University, right Trump?
"I'm Used To Standing Out"
And while these responses are powerful, they're also sad. Trump and his supporters, along with irrational fear, have created an environment where a group of American citizens feel like they have to define and prove their worth, just so they can be considered equal. That's everything this country shouldn't stand for. That's everything that is wrong with the hateful and misguided rhetoric Donald Trump carelessly regurgitates.
(His 2016 Presidential campaign will be over soon, right? We're all tired of the show at this point? Are we ready to get serious yet?)
Images: Joe Raedle/Getty Images; Marwa Balkar/Facebook