A London woman’s actions against a hate-filled tirade have drawn attention from around the world. The video starts out with a man taunting a boy who is wearing a kippah or yarmulke. What appears to be family members sit around the target of abuse. At one point, an adult male family member tells the boy to ignore the hateful words.
The man also threatened others on the train who tried to stop his ramblings. A woman wearing a hijab, confirmed by other outlets to be Asma Shuweikh, steps in to stop the situation. She is unshakable in her resolve to help the family escape their tormentor.
According to CNN, Shuweikh spoke with PA news agency about the ordeal captured on the viral video. “I would have loved more people to come up and say something because if everyone did, I do not think it would have escalated in the way that it did,” she said during the interview. “Being a mother-of-two, I know what it’s like to be in that situation and I would want someone to help if I was in that situation.” Shuweikh also mentioned that the family appeared to be traveling with three young children.
Chris Atkins is credited with capturing the incident as he traveled on the tube. “The Muslim woman didn’t take any shit from him and really, really took him to task, very firmly and persistently,” he told the press agency. “In this day and age we are told how intolerant everyone is and all religions hate each other and there you had a Muslim woman sticking up for some Jewish children.”
Social Media Users Overwhelmingly Praised Shuweikh
Shuweikh’s actions quickly brought praise as the video spread across social media. “As a mother, I am so grateful to Asma Shuweikh for standing up for these boys against this anti-Semitic bigot,” wrote Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney in a tweet about the video. “Bravery means standing up for what’s right. Especially now, more people need to follow her example,” she added.
Others were quick to point out that many in London would have been repulsed by his actions.”This is a story about humanity and the instinct to protect each other. This is my London,”wrote Cabinet Member for Housing and Estate Renewal Emina Ibrahim. Those sentiments were echoed across the platform.
Shuweikh also revealed that she got a Twitter account just to read the positive reactions.”It was so heartwarming to see the responses and see what people were saying. I can’t take all the credit because a lot of other people were involved,” she said in an interview. “I would not hesitate to do it again.”
The Unidentified Man Was Taken Into Custody for Racially Aggravated Statements
The man who taunted the young boy was taken into custody. Police confirm his arrest on Saturday night and subsequent detention in Birmingham.
As of November 24, he remains in police custody with charges related to suspicion of committing a racially aggravated public order offense. There is no word on what other legal issues he may face based on the video or other offenses not related to this incident.