A photo showing a Muslim woman posing in front of anti-muslim protesters has gone viral thereby turning her into an online sensation.
Shaymaa Ismaa’eel, 24, a behavioural therapist for children with autism from the DC area, found protesters outside the Islamic Circle of North America convention on Saturday.
While the protesters were bullying Muslims who passed by and told them they would go to hell, she told her friend to take a picture of her squatting right in front of them.
Speaking to BuzzFeed, Shaymaa said:
“I wanted them to see my face and walking by wasn’t enough. We were busy Saturday and they had left by the time things at the convention slowed down.
“I kept thinking about them during the workshops. ‘What if we had a loud speaker so they can hear the beautiful things we’re learning about our beloved prophet?!’ I kept thinking to myself.”
She said she did some shopping, left the main building, and then saw them again.
“My face honestly lit up when I had seen. I yelled to my friend Jamilah, ‘There they are! Can you take a picture?’
“I walked up as they continued yelling their hateful speech. I asked the police officer if I could stand at the curb in front of the men. The officer said ‘no’, and in that moment I felt like the biggest rebel.
“I smiled so hard in the picture and the man [started] directing his speech toward me. Silly things like ‘your face should be covered.'”
Despite what happened, Ismaa’eel said she had a great time at the convention.
“Overall, this didn’t ruin the experience for me in the slightest.”