A friend of Dua Abudiab stopped wearing the hijab after a man accosted her and called her several names while she was riding a bus in downtown Seattle. It was a sobering moment for Dua, a public defender at the Department of Public Defense’s The Defenders Association Division (DPD TDA), who wears the hijab every day.
Dua is also active in the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR). Around the same time that Dua’s friend was accosted, the director of CAIR reached out to her and asked her if she would write about what it means to be a Muslim American woman. Such a piece, he told her, would help to affirm other women who show their faith by wearing the hijab.
Dua doesn’t like attention. But her friend’s experience, other recent incidents that have garnered press attention and the encouragement of the CAIR director convinced her that she should speak out. And so she did.
On August 8, a commentary she penned ran in The Seattle Times. The response has been overwhelming, she said. “I told folks it’s not about me. It’s about the adults and kids out there who are being harassed, and to let them know they are not alone.”
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