I had a discussion with my friend about some of the challenges hijabis face and we concluded that it seemed like the moment you put on a hijab people expect you to be both smart and stupid, sophisticated and guileless, perfect and yet censurable, I know it sounds ridiculous to think that anybody would expect this of any one person and truth be told, that is exactly what it is.
The only problem with this conclusion is that things aren’t always as they seem, so although it seems like people expect the best and worst of hijabis, in the real sense, they think the least of her but judge her like the best. This is why – when she’s walking down the street, they ask “aren’t you hot” but if she try insisting on sitting by the window in a bus, they say “she’s too selective”. When she raises her hand to answer a question in class, they roll their eyes like “what can she possibly know?” but if she gets some questions wrong in a test, they say things like “aren’t hijabis supposed to be more focused, less distraction”. When someone tries to cheat her and she just lets it go, they take her for granted and call her meek “can’t fight for her right” but the moment she says a word, it becomes “how can a hijabi say such things, the hijab doesn’t reflect in her character”. If someone hits her and she keeps her cool, they call her weak, and if she fights back they call her aggressive “must be what Islam teaches her”. Oh! let’s not forget the part where Islam is guilty of every crime she commits.
It can be very infuriating and sometime you (as a hijabi) feel the need to put people in their place but the fact is that it is in people’s nature to say infuriating things and it is the nature of a hijabi to be patient, and I see no reason why you should let people’s nature over shadow yours. You patience and silence doesn’t indicate that you’re stupid, instead it is a virtue, an indication of good character, an indication that you’re a woman of substance. If you are someone who is impatient by nature, you should try to learn the act and pray to God for help, because the best way to spread Islam is with the character.
Heads up people, hijabis are regular human beings just like you, they have their strength and weaknesses, they are absolutely imperfect and definitely not stupid. The next time a hijabi makes a mistake, if you can’t cut her some slacks then blame her human nature and not Islam.
Peace be with you..