The Lyon Attack: a three step analysis

On Friday, a man was decapitated in an attack at a gas factory near Lyon, eastern France. The attacker has been arrested. How did the media cover this event? It’s a simple three step analysis.

Step 1

Is it a mental illness? Or maybe a fractured home? No, don’t worry. it’s just Muslims being, you know, Muslims. This means we can skip the humanizing process, no analyses have to be made here, it was just a frustrated Muslim, and we know how they are, right? If it was a racist white man then obviously we had to make sure we made him look as innocent as possible, especially if he killed 9 people for racist reasons. I mean, we can’t make people think that he was a *drum roll* “TERRORIST”, can we? No, this time that’s not the case, it’s one of those Muslims again so we can go wild with the diabolizing process. Throw some words in there like “radical” and “ISIS” and we’re good.

Step 2

Ugh, can’t those Muslims control their own people? Another member of their group has misbehaved again, it’s time to make them all feel bad. Because obviously if this one person doesn’t understand the simple rule of how killing people is bad, they must all think like that.
I don’t know how others feel but every time I hear something about an attack, I pray that it’s not involving Muslims. Because I know how it goes, I know how people react when we’re talking about Muslim terrorists. ‘’Oh God, they’ve done it again” or ”Muslims! What did you expect?” They take it so far that Muslims almost feel the need to apologize for it and some even do! I used to think that I had to ensure people that I was not positive about terrorist attacks. But now I have come to a point where I think, if people still think that all Muslims have to say sorry for the mistakes of a few rotten apples, then it’s up to them to apologize to us.

Step 3

Last but not least, the long-awaited question : “So how do you Muslims feel about this?” How do we feel about what? Some insane people killing innocents? What do you expect from us? That we actually don’t have the same opinion as you because the terrorists were Muslims? Do the people who ask these kind of questions even think twice before they do because I’m always amazed at how many people try to ask me this. But to give you some kind of answer on how we feel: How do you feel about Dylan Roof? Or about white cops killing innocent black people? Or let’s say, about Breivik? Exactly.

A final note to finish this analysis: Something horrible happened today and people were harmed and even killed. And my thoughts are with those people, but my thoughts are also with all those people this week who were attacked by ISIS, such as in the mosque in Kuwait where 13 people were killed, but who didn’t even get the slightest attention because somehow they didn’t matter.

Written by Latifa Saber

Latifa Saber is a 21-year-old student with strong opinions on pretty much everything. Feminism, literature and fashion are her main fields of interest.