Thursday, February 10, 2011
I Am a Tahrir Protester
I, as most Arabs around the world have been glued to my computer, blackberry and television watching history unfold in the Middle East. It started in Tunisia with a man setting himself on fire, sacrificing himself his family his future for the future of others. We are now seeing the same thing happen in Egypt. Regular people like you and me fighting for freedom, for their God given rights. In both Tunisia and Egypt and other parts of the Arab world you see students, mothers, fathers, educated, uneducated, rich, poor, Muslim, Christian stand together with the same goals, same hopes, same aspirations. During the past 16 days of protest in Egypt, I had many sleepless nights but this time it was different than the usual sleepless nights due to work stress. This time I stayed up and reflected on myself and my role in the world and how I related to what was happening in Egypt. I imagined the characteristics of the protesters. People who were fed up and could no longer sit back and watch their future and the future of their children remain hostage to injustice and oppression. The protesters are sacrificing their time, lives, jobs, education and their own personal interests for the interests of their nation. This historical episode has made me realize why I chose the path that I live today. I chose to live a life where I can fight injustices, give voice to the voiceless and provide service to those less fortunate. I chose an honorable lifestyle over a fat paycheck although the work that activists do on a daily basis is priceless. I chose to inspire and uplift my community, cultivate and develop the next generation of leaders because that's what a leader does and I am a leader. I am so grateful to the Tunisians, the Egyptians for reaffirming the choices I have made, reaffirming who I am and who I strive to be. I pray for the day when true and genuine democracy rings throughout the entire world and most dear in my heart, Palestine.