Yes, My Muslim Friends Know

I don’t get asked this very often but when I do it’s always in a whisper and with a concerned look: “Do they know you’re… y’know?”

I’ve briefly mentioned a Muslim friend of mine or my Muslim neighbours or colleagues. And I’ve been interrupted by this urgently whispered question from an invariably White acquaintance.

“Do they know? 

Yes.

For once and for always, YES.

My Muslim friends know I’m Jewish. This has literally never been a problem. I know you mean to imply there is a problem, that I should keep this hidden away from Muslim people… And I hear that you have Islamophobic beliefs and you assume that I will to. You think Jews and Muslims should fear each other. But you whisper because you know this isn’t acceptable – maybe some part of you knows it isn’t true.

My Muslim friends know I’m Jewish.

My Muslim friends know that I’m queer.

I don’t pretend to be anyone else, not in public, not at work, not at synagogue and definitely not at home.

I am queer and Jewish and if you think that means I can’t have genuine relationships with Muslim people, that says a lot more about you than about anyone else.

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