Dear Mrs. ISIS

February Op-ed column for the Bridge River Lillooet News

International Women’s Day is coming on March 8th and I just wanted to write and let you know that you’re in my thoughts. I rarely see you on the news and when I do, you’re hidden, a black ghost on the move. Of course I have no idea what your life is truly like, but I know it can’t be easy being married to an extremist. During the Arab Spring, I saw your sisters on the news almost daily. It felt good to see their faces, see them out in the streets protesting alongside husbands, children and neighbours. In Tunisia, Egypt, and Iran, cell phones sent out images, we heard all the people calling for their rights. There were brutal crackdowns, people were gassed, jailed and killed, but still the protests kept going. We held our hopeful breaths: change seemed imminent, the dictators would topple. The Middle East was rising up.

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