Recently, I came across an interesting radio show highlighting “the misconceptions people have about different countries and the people living there”. The show was on air from Norway and was hosted by a woman named Veronica. She interviewed different people from America, Egypt, Mexico and Norway trying to showcase the misconceptions and the problems people face when they visit other countries.
She mentioned that most Americans believe that “Muslims are terrorists” and its clichéd. On the other hand Muslims and Arabs have this view that All Americans and Christians are evil and they are not good people, as they hate Muslims.
She discussed this issue with an American who was there in Egypt. He told her that people here in Egypt are welcoming, and he loved the hospitality and respect people gave him. Yes, people here feel that Americans are not always good, but there is a difference between American politics and an individual. Moreover, he stated that yes, there are problems, but it’s not that difficult to survive.
Later in the show, she interviewed Ehab, who is working as a blogger for Muslim Academy. He was expressive in telling her that Muslim Academy is a unique platform that provides people with an opportunity to come and discuss the misconceptions. The mission of the organization is to foster brotherhood through mutual understanding. Ehab is a Christian living in Egypt; he elaborated that he was not harassed or oppressed by anyone here in Egypt. He can easily go to church and can practice his religion. He highlighted the fact that yes there are problems with the minorities and people in America think that we in Egypt live in Pyramids and use camels for transportation, as this is what the media usually shows.
A Muslim student from Norway explained the fact that people here in the middle east and even in Egypt feel that all the European girls are sluts, which is actually wrong, but they have made their perceptions on the basis of what they watch in movies and on TV. People in America and in Europe are not like that. They also have Muslim friends and many Muslims are living a comfortable life in America without being harassed.
While interviewing a Mexican, she asked the same question to which he replied saying that, “many people feel that we are drug dealers.” So, yes people have their own perceptions and at times it is difficult to snub.
To be laconic, one could say that this show highlights the various misconceptions people have about each other across the globe. What we all have to do is to make sure we look at the positives, we all should try and understand each other by resolving all the misconceptions that we have. The epitome of a neutral platform and a place where both westerners and Muslims can come and discuss their issues and can resolve them by peaceful mutual talks is “Muslim Academy”. Muslim Academy is an organization with an aim to narrow down the distances between the people of west and Muslims.