Layan*, 1st Generation Palestinian-American
Interviewed by Asma Barakat virtually, 08/15/22
Transcribed by Asma Barakat, 08/22/22
(00:00) Asma Barakat: This is Asma Barakat interviewing Layan on August 15, 2022, this interview is taking place virtually. So, Layan, can you tell me a little bit about where you’re from? Where you were born? Where you live now?
(00:18) Layan: Yeah. So I am from San Francisco, California. And that’s where I was born and raised. I’m currently in Chicago, finishing up my master’s degree. And I’m moving back to San Francisco soon, and my family in Jerusalem is from Shufat.
(00:45) Asma Barakat: That’s very interesting. Could you, so you were born in the US and your parents are from Jerusalem. Did they tell you about any stories of Palestine when you were growing up? Or did you ever visit Palestine? And also, how do you kind of see yourself as a Palestinian living in America? How do you identify and such?
(01:10) Layan: Yeah, so my parents definitely did tell me stories about Palestine growing up. Mainly their stories were about their childhood and how they used to be out all day playing in the hills. And it’s funny because a lot of California actually resembles Falasteen. And so they would mainly get that nostalgia as we were driving to Central Valley. And they would always say, Oh, these hills are like the hills back home. And we used to play all day. And my mom, too, she would… so my mom was raised in the 70s in Shufat, and she would tell me a lot about like, just the level of blackmailing that Palestinians there would face because it’s like in the Israeli territory. So some of her teachers, you know, would even be afraid to say the word Palestine, or I think, she would tell me that the Palestine, the Palestinian flag was forbidden. In terms of, you know, me visiting, I visited last when I was 13 years old. And I haven’t been back since. And my mom literally asked if I wanted to go with her in a month, actually, but I couldn’t. And I can’t because I’m starting a new job. And, you know, we’re in a recession here in America, and my family’s working class. So I didn’t think it would be wise to go on a two-month vacation and potentially lose out on my employment and money I need to make.
(02:53) Asma Barakat: Yeah, no, I completely understand. That’s unfortunately, a lot of our realities. When you were 13, and you visited, could you kind of take me through the experiences that you had maybe did you notice things that were culturally different than they are in America, or really just any experience that made you… really made you think about the differences between the US and Falasteen?
(03:22) Layan: Yeah, that’s an interesting question. You know, I think for me, because I grew up around a lot of Palestinians. I didn’t really feel like alienated from the people there and I spoke Arabi, pretty fluently, and I still do. So I felt like culturally, I blended in with people. And I honestly felt more comforted being there. Because for the first time, everywhere, I would look there would be signs in Arabi, or just, you know, food that I eat on a regular basis or everything is halal. Or I don’t have to, I mean, I do have to worry about a different kind of racism, but, for the most part, it’s safe and people know one another there. And, you know, when we would go to Ramallah, through the checkpoints, I just remember always feeling deep anxiety. Because, you know, we would sometimes cross the checkpoints by foot. And, you know, I would have to take off everything, like my belt, my shoes, even my small hijab pins. And I remember one day for some reason, the metal detector kept going off and the line was so long, and I just started getting so much anxiety. And the Israeli soldier that was at the checkpoint was trying to tell me that my passport was fake. And fortunately, another one said, something to him in Hebrew and was like, no, no, no just let her go. But yeah, I just felt that perpetual anxiety and dread of being Palestinian in Palestine where it doesn’t really matter if you’re American or not, they can essentially do what they want. And there might be some condemnation, some anger, or whatever. But ultimately, at the end of the day, if a soldier decides to kill me, regardless of my citizenship, he’s probably not going to be held accountable. So when you walk around Jerusalem, and you see all these soldiers carrying guns, and you’re aware of the fact that you’re Palestinian, and they can essentially do whatever they want to you, it’s crazy. So, yeah, it’s just, I definitely felt like the main difference is, essentially, you’re going to a place where you’re bottom of the hierarchy, and where people have the power to just do whatever they want to you. And you can’t do anything in return, otherwise, you’ll probably be killed or imprisoned.
(06:11) Asma Barakat: Yeah, definitely being Palestinian kind of rules over everything. Yeah, that is a very frightening thing that we all have to deal with. Um, so your parents left Falasteen and they came to the US could do you know, about, you know, kind of the story about why they came here, was it? I mean, we were all kind of forced to leave. What does that look like in their story?
(06:43) Layan: Yeah, so my mom, she came here, because my dad, you know, had already settled here. The thing is, with my dad, and I find this to be relevant to a lot of like immigrant parents is that he doesn’t really, he’s never really told me the story in full I just kind of get tidbits here and there, and I put things together. So my dad growing up, had six, seven siblings, and his dad actually lived in Latin America, for the most part, and I think they would send money back home. So his dad didn’t really live with them, for economic reasons, primarily. And my dad, he would sometimes… he would work in Israeli kitchens, doing the worst labor, he would be like- he told me that he used to cut onions, for one of his jobs in an Israeli hospital. The primary reason was definitely because there’s no opportunities in my family. They’re Falahi, so after the 1967 War, Israel actually confiscated a good portion of the land, too, and built illegal settlements on it. And it’s actually something that was recognized as, an illegal move. There’s actually articles written about the land itself that was taken from, you know, my family and others within the community. But like I said, there’s no accountability. So, yeah, it was primarily economic reasons.
(08:25) Asma Barakat: Yeah, I find that’s actually very similar to my family story, too. And kind of that not being you know, maybe physically forced to, to leave, but other situations that kind of forced you and your family out as well. So are there any memories of traditions or cultural practices or what kind of stands out to the most in your family?
(08:57) Layan: Yeah, you know, I think my family is very much still a Falahi family. My dad, he has this little garden that he takes care of. And the thing is that we don’t have a backyard in San Francisco. Because we live on top of a building and we yeah, we just never had a backyard. Our backyard is basically a roof. So, my dad, he got all these potted plants. And he actually grows these plants so well. He has tomatoes and lemons and na’ na’ and filfil and all this kind of stuff, which is really difficult to grow in San Francisco because it’s always cold. So I’m like, I don’t even know how this man does it. And mind you, we rent the apartment so the landlords had once came to us, were like, You need to get rid of this and my dad was like, F U, I’m not removing this. And they actually let him keep it. So, that’s my dad and then my mom, she does a lot of the old school, making khubiz on the rocks and you know, making mansaf, like actually taking the labna rocks and smashing it with that stone. Or she’ll make her own olives. So, we used to do tatreez together. So she taught me how to do tatreez and we made a couple bags. So it’s mainly about the cultural practices. The beliefs, of course, are the same, in terms of, I guess, you know, the morality kind of like, oh, no dating, no relationships, marriage blah blah blah. And so yeah, for me, I think it was easier. We never really felt pressure to assimilate primarily, because, to be honest, I think it’s because San Francisco’s more liberal. And there’s a lot of issues with liberalism, but they also allow for diversity in ways that I think the majority of American communities do not. So we never really felt a pressure to assimilate. And we, I also grew up around other people of color, too. So yeah.
(11:24) Asma Barakat: Yeah, that is very similar to how my family grew up as well. That’s very interesting. So I am going to ask you a little bit about kind of spirituality, religious practices, and all of that stuff. So firstly, is your family religious? And are you religious? And looking back through your childhood? How do you feel that religion played a role in your life?
(11:55) Layan: Yeah, you know, my dad isn’t too too religious, he’s Muslim. And he believes in Islam, but he’s never been… we’ve never been a masjid family. My mom is more religious. So we would… she would take us to the masjid, Monday through Thursday after school from when I was 12 to 15. And I was in Islamic school, from 7 to 12. Learning about thiq. So I think for me, religion was, I mean, it was a part of everything. I think, Palestinian, I mean, this is my assessment, but a lot of Palestinian morality, traditional values align with religion. But, you know, that’s because, over time, I don’t know, it’s just the way it is. But we would have, we had, for example, a Christian Palestinian family, that we were close to and my dad was close to in particular, and there was nothing but respect. Now, for me, I think religion does play an important part in the liberation of Palestine. I don’t know what exactly a Palestinian state would look like. But I’m also critical of the narratives that are ultra, ultra secular because at the end of the day it is part of the historical setting significance of the land is its religious significance and of its old faith communities. And, you know, I don’t want to sanitize that legacy. I don’t know, I saw someone on Reddit yesterday. This is just a person on Reddit, but they were like, Oh, Al Aqsa should be turned into a museum. So Palestine can be secular and I was like what the hell? Oh, or, you know, people that are trying to say oh, for example, someone on Twitter also once was like, oh, when people fight for Falasteen in the name of Islam, it’s more of a ritual cultural practice rather than actual religion. I’m like, bro, shut up, like, so I think religion plays an important part in that sense of community and unity. But I don’t think the reason why people self-sacrifice or are willing to sacrifice so much is because of religion alone. Like there are a lot of Christian… I mean, yeah, Christian Palestinians are religious too. But, you know, there are a lot of atheists Palestinians, or agnostic Palestinians that are sacrificing just as much. Yeah, I do get irritated from non-Palestinian Muslims that just insert themselves in every conversation or just speak over the actual Palestinians. And my parents always raised me to see myself as part of an Ummah. So I wasn’t raised with this like, oh, Arabs are better, Palestinians are better. It was always like, oh, all Muslims are the same. So that was always my attitude. But to be honest, that has kind of shifted the more I’ve talked to non-Palestinian Muslims because I just been like, I’ve just experienced so much microaggressions and racism from them that I’m now more skeptical to just be like, oh, yeah, we’re all one Ummah, you know, because they don’t act we are. And they’re not going over there to defend us, they do charity, sure. But it’s like, at the end of the day, who was there actually resisting? It’s not them, but they have so much to say online, right?
(16:05) Asma Barakat: Yeah, no, that brings up so much. I have so many questions to ask just from that. But, in my own experience, and in other interviews that we’ve done, culture and religion is so hard to separate and that really, just like a thing, it just is a fact. I think, when you’re Palestinian, they are they really do bleed into one another. But, yeah, the way that religion comes into your understanding of the struggle and liberation, and pretty much that entire aspect, I’m really interested in that. Could you kind of go into that a little bit more?
(16:48) Layan: Yeah. So for me, I think, people, there’s this narrative that Palestine has nothing to do with religion, and it’s settler colonialism. And, you know, of course, it is settler colonialism. But I also think Muslim people are also subjected to colonization or settler colonial ideals. So I think it’s at once an issue of religion, but not in the way as popular, popularly conceptualized, or talked about, like, oh, an age-old ancient battle between the Jews and the Christians and Muslims. It’s more than that Muslims, within European colonialism are also subjected to racialization, not just in the Middle East, but also in South Asia, North Africa. The Muslim and the Arab are inseparable to the Europeans. So when people try to be, oh, there’s no religion involved. I’m like, well, religious people are also viewed as backwards, stupid, traditional, right, in France, for example, or, you know, within the secular tradition, and a lot of that has to do with European modernity. So for me, for example, when people chant Allahu Akbar, protests, I don’t really, I don’t really find… I find that sometimes people don’t like it. And I feel like that’s a form of policing. Because I feel like, why are you uncomfortable with someone saying, God is great? And these kinds of secular Palestinians, if they were to go to a Native American protest, and there was an ancient spiritual, kind of ritual being performed, nobody would say anything. Nobody would be telling Native Americans, oh, you can’t practice, your religion in public, but I don’t know. I think it’s internalized Islamophobia. In some ways to be like, Oh, we can’t practice religion, because it’s inherently oppressive to other people. In terms of designing the state. I don’t know. But I just think that sometimes there’s just too much of an aversion to people displaying their Muslimness in public, which I don’t agree with.
(19:10) Asma Barakat: Yeah, no, I totally understand that definitely comes up a lot. I think people want to, like separate you know, Palestine is not a religious cause. And then they get fumbled and all of their, trying to prove it. And unfortunately, even Palestinian Christians have to deal with, people give them Islamophobic comments because people just assume, you know. Palestine is there’s a lot of Islamophobia within that Zionism and settler colonialism so, even if you’re not Palestinian Muslim, but Islamophobia is always there, underlying.
(19:51) Layan: Yeah, and I want to say it’s also, I mean, are you going to tell Palestinian Christians that they can’t practice their religion or that, their understanding of Palestine needs to be completely secular, this is the land where the Christianity came from, there’s a lot of pride in the fact that they’re indigenous to Palestine, you know what I mean? And a lot of it is inseparable from faith. So yeah, I would say it’s for Muslims and for Christians too, both should be able to publicly talk about how their faith is important to them. For religion.
(20:30) Asma Barakat: Yeah, I’m definitely with you on that. Could you kind of talk about so you did say, you know, how you were raised with this idea of all Muslims are equal, the Ummah and everything. And, you know, when you get older, you kind of speak to Muslims who, who may have, you know, maybe a Zionist agenda or a liberal Zionist agenda or just anti-Palestinian, when you kind of challenged some of their beliefs. Do you want to talk about how, maybe you kind of shifted from how you grew up? you know, after these experiences, how you think now?
(21:08) Layan: Yeah, so, I think the main distinction is that, for most Palestinians, for Palestine, Palestine is a non-negotiable to us, right? If someone you know, you’re interacting with has like a trash opinion, you’re not going to be like, oh, yeah, I understand that, that for the most part, right. Not all Palestinians. But there is a common understanding of this importance, people are not going to be, yeah, as a Palestinian, My people are suffering but, what can I do, you know, even in diaspora people still do what they can, whether that be donating contacting representatives, even if they’re limited, you know, there’s like, a sense of obligation to give back. And I always, you know, I felt that way with different Muslim communities that were also struggling. And I never compared the issue, I always was like, oh, you know, this is the same front, then, as with all oppressed communities, so I never was like, oh, like, we’re suffering more in division than I don’t have time to focus. But I find that with a lot of diasporic Muslim communities, especially those people that are not coming from countries that are actively facing persecution or something, they have so much to say. This one person I talked to said to me once, “Oh, I’m tired of hearing you talk about Palestine. It’s 80% of your personality.” And I was like, what the hell. They’re like, it’s just too sad to hear about. And for me, that was just extremely pathetic because obviously, I don’t feel good listening to it. But I still need to do something about it. And that’s a distinction between Palestinians and non-Palestinians is that we don’t have the luxury of just forgetting number one, number two, we know that whatever emotions we feel witnessing, talking, and learning about something is nothing in comparison to what people back home feel, right? You know, another person, when Sherine Abu Akleh shooting was killed, they were basically trying to say to me that, Palestinians are facing punishment from God because they don’t follow Islam properly. And that’s something I see people try to say a lot that we deserve what we’re going through. An Uber driver said that to me once he was like, “oh, your forefathers sold the land” blah blah blah. And I was like, I had to respect this uncle because you know. I’m like, this is just stupid uncle saying something and he’s driving Uber, you know, how much am I gonna pop off on this man, but I did put him straight. I told him I was like, get the facts straight, sir. Yeah, it’s just here and there superiority. Sometimes people will say, oh, Palestinians in diaspora are less religious. And Palestinians in diaspora are not the real courageous Palestinians, like the ones on the land, y’all are corrupted. It’s like bro shut up, what is your community doing here? I want you to look at your people and worry about them before you police us. And that’s all I’ma say.
(24:42) Asma Barakat: Yeah, I’ve heard all of those comments, I’ve seen online so many times and people trying to separate, you know, Palestinians in Falasteen and then us in the diaspora. It’s just so ridiculous. Do you think that your relationship with Palestine differs from previous generations? Maybe your parents or, you know, other generations that you see around you maybe younger or older?
(25:16) Layan: That’s a great question. I think, for the older generations, maybe my parent’s generation, they, the colonists… I mean, you know, the British occupied Palestine before the zionist’s colonization of it. So it’s not like, colonization just happened in 1948. But it was a different kind of trauma with the Nakba. I think for the parent’s generation, it was still a little bit fresh and a little bit more new. And for us, it’s really settled that this is our reality. But we’re still not pessimistic. So I think there’s, I don’t know, I feel like my generation has way more anger. Yeah, I don’t know.
(26:18) Asma Barakat: Yeah, the anger I definitely agree with that. Do your family and you, do you ever just talk about, you know, the right of return? And what that would ever look like? Do you ever have conversations about that?
(26:37) Layan: No. Okay. So to be honest, my dad would be pissed if he knew I was doing the interview because he’s always telling me to stay out of politics, but I just kind of ignore him. My mom, I’m gonna keep it real, my mom when I talked to her about the Nakba, but she didn’t even know what it was. And I don’t blame her because it’s like, she grew up in East Jerusalem, and the curriculum was controlled by the Israeli state. So she would… she told me, you know, in the textbooks, they would just teach them like, Israel was always here, basically. So like, when it comes to the nitty gritty political stuff, I don’t actually think my parents are too too well versed in it. Primarily because, yeah, I mean, I think it’s because they’re working class. And, you know, my grandparents couldn’t really read or anything like that. They’re just more concerned with the practicalities, the day-to-day, you know, building their houses, farming their lands, and that kind of stuff. But a lot of the research is from me, my brother lives in Falasteen. So it’s more of like a practicality of returning rather than a long-term political thing, but yeah.
(28:03) Asma Barakat: Yeah, my, my parents were actually the same when I was a kid. I had to kind of do my own Palestinian research. And I would bring up the Nakba, they didn’t know the term of it, because my family’s from a village in the West Bank. So it was kind of the same, the same way, I guess, yeah, their curriculum was awful to say the least.
(28:26) Layan: Yeah.
(28:29) Asma Barakat: And you did mention that your generation… and you kind of do the research in your family and you’re more politically involved, and you’re more… our generation, in general, is just angrier. Do you think that’s from being in the diaspora? Or how do you think being in the diaspora has really affected the relationship you have with being Palestinian?
(28:54) Layan: Yeah, I definitely think that it’s about being in the diaspora, because I think Palestinians in diaspora, we don’t vibe with America, at least, you know, Palestinian diaspora in America. We don’t have this idealized fancified, understanding of America and American exceptionalism. We’re very critical of this country. We see what it’s put our parents through. And we’re aware of what the Israeli state has put our families through. So it’s like, for me, I’ve only met my grandmothers once. And that’s because they were in Falasteen and, I never met my grandfather’s one of them passed away before I was born and the other, you know, passed away when I was here in America. Most of my family lives in Falasteen. So I think part of that anger is just having your family be fractured in that way. And your connection to your culture and your roots also be fractured. Because with most diaspora communities, they’re able to return to the homeland. And for us, we can’t really do that for the most part. Even if I had the money to go to Falasteen tomorrow, I’m scared that they would reject me at the airport. I just heard this story of these two women that were held in detention for like, two days. My cousin, she couldn’t even see her sister’s wedding because they denied her entry, you know? So I think… that’s a lengthy wait, but I think it’s just, it’s not… it’s about our displacement. And it’s about us trying to hold on desperately to our culture, and identity in ways that we can sometimes struggle to do in America because we’re so focused on work for survival. And, yeah, I mean, Palestinians like to be around other Palestinians. There’s just like that instinct connection, even in diaspora when you meet someone, there’s a common understanding. So I think the desire to return home is just about having that understanding that’s kind of lacking in America, especially with all the racism. Yeah.
(31:29) Asma Barakat: Yeah, that was a great answer. I definitely related to a lot of this well, I’m kind of going back to how we’ve seen, you know, all the racism in America and, honestly, being worked to death in this country, and all of that. And since the fact that America is, is the reason for, you know, billions of dollars going to Israel every year. How as a Palestinian are you able to kind of cope with that? And what brings you like, strength? Or resilience?
(32:10) Layan: Yeah, I would say that you know, again, being around other Palestinians definitely brings me that strength, whether that be in person or in online communities, just because there’s so much understanding between us and one another. And reading honestly brings me that strength. I just find that there’s so much power in knowledge. And the ability to articulate your own narrative counter to what’s being shown to you in the media, or in history textbooks, from people that don’t know what the hell is going on. So yeah, I remember once, I went to an Arab store with one of my friends, an Arabic grocery store. And she’s East Asian, she’s Chinese, right. So we went and the store owner, he’s Falasteeni. And then he was like, Oh, where are you from? And then we just instantly started having a conversation about how much America sucks, you know? And she was, surprised that, you know, we were able to just connect that easily, you know, but that’s a part of the Palestinian experience, is just that understanding. So for me, again, having that understanding that community is critical to our resilience, and just sometimes, being a little snobby, being like, excuse me, I’m an American citizen, I have the right to freedom of speech, I have the right to protest. You cannot tell me I cannot boycott, sir. Right? So it’s knowing that there is some way to use this system to our advantage in order to put pressure on America is also beneficial.
(34:14) Asma Barakat: So I feel like I’m bouncing around a little bit here. Has, again in the… how you think about, being strong and being resilient and kind of coping with being Palestinian, does any of that ever come from your religious understandings or your faith? Like what… How does your morals either if they come from a religious background or not, what part of them makes you feel called to, you know? Palestine is so important to you and the cause is like, we live and breathe it. So what of your morals or values kind of come help you understand liberation and the occupation and all of that?
(35:03) Layan: Yeah, for me, number one, I believe Islam, you know, is a religion of the oppressed rather than the oppressor. And I think part of what allows me and gives me some comfort is that I would rather be the oppressed than the oppressor, you know. When that uncle, he was trying to tell me that, Palestinians are being punished. I was trying to tell him, I’m like, well, don’t you think it would be more of a punishment to live in greed, and cause bloodshed in this life and then be condemned to hell fire? I don’t know. Like, I think that’s the real punishment, is to be a traitor with no ethics. Even in the absence of religion, I still find that, I mean, I can’t really say that because I was raised religious. But it’s just about having this ethic of being against bloodshed, being for the poor and for the oppressed people, and not seeing yourself as an individual, but as a part of a larger community. And the rewards, in the end, the baraka in helping your brother and sister and in martyrdom, I think all of that informs my understanding of Palestine. Because, to be honest, if I were to think that there was no next life or afterlife and that there was no God, looking at everything happening, like a God of justice, looking at everything happening, that is going to be able to enact justice, whether that be in this life or the next life for people. It’s like, well, what purpose? Why would I want to live on this earth? Like, as a Palestinian? There’s no benefit, you know? So I think, yeah, it’s very important, because otherwise, it’s like, people would just be dying with no justice in this life and in the next life.
(35:04) Asma Barakat: Yeah, no, definitely having kind of, religious beliefs, spiritual beliefs, all of that definitely helps, you know, deal with how crazy the reality is for Palestinians. So I definitely understand that. One of our favorite questions to ask people is what does home mean to you?
(37:44) Layan: Yeah, I think home is about safety. It’s a place where… yeah, I think it’s mainly like a place where you don’t really feel that precarity, I think that people often feel in America, because in America, it’s like, you have to constantly work to just have a place to live. Otherwise, you’re constantly migrating to different cities where the cost of living is cheaper. So for me home is just having that stability. Being around your community. Being able to sustain yourself, I don’t know, I would love to make khubiz from scratch. For some reason, when I think of home, I just think of like, khubiz, I love khubiz. But yeah, I think it’s just about living the day-to-day with the people you love. And the people who care for you and the people you care for too.
(39:04) Asma Barakat: Yeah, that is, that really is all it comes down to in the end. Let’s see here. Is there anything that you wish I asked you throughout this interview or anything that you would just like to add from your experience as a Palestinian in America?
(39:25) Layan: There was something I wanted to say. Oh, yeah, you know, I just wanted to just talk about, the repression that Palestinians in diaspora face, I think, oftentimes, we truly underestimate how much of a threat we are to the Israeli state. Because Israel is not just trying to police and monitor the Palestinians that live within the border. They try to contain, surveil, and police, the Palestinians that are in diaspora all over the world. They use social media, they try to align with different governments, that all of that just to repress us. But for me, trying to repress us in the diaspora just reminds us that we’re as equally powerful, and our resistance matters just as much as people on the ground. So whenever people are like, Oh, what is… what is posting something? What is protesting gonna do, what is contacting… what is this going to do? Blah blah blah, you know, that kind of pessimism. I don’t believe it. Of course, we shouldn’t just stop at it. But I think it’s really important that as people in the diaspora we continuously resist and remind ourselves of the connection to the homeland because if we don’t, it’s going to be lost after a generation or two. We don’t want that to happen. We need to hold on to Palestine, for as long as possible until the day we’re free, and we’re able to return.
(41:09) Asma Barakat: Yeah, it’s funny, because I think in a lot of our cultures, there’s a lot of this kind of emphasis on don’t forget your country, don’t forget your homeland, watanik and, all this stuff, and then we get so much pushback from that when that’s all we’re trying to do. From both sides, I feel like, from Zionists and from people who claim that they’re not Zionists, at least. Yeah. But if future generations were to listen to this interview or future generations of anyone, what do you hope that they would take away from this interview?
(41:46) Layan: Yeah, I would want them to take away that no act of resistance is not minuscule, you know, even declaring yourself as Palestinian publicly trying to reconnect with your roots. You know, relearning your history, practice, don’t let anybody mock or belittle you, especially if they’re not Palestinian, but even if they are, whatever you do to maintain that connection, and that resistance is very, very important. Because the minute we forget is the minute that we lose Palestine. So yeah, that’s something I try to fight against, especially when people are like, posting is pointless. I’m like, well, rather than be nihilistic and tell people that what they’re doing is pointless, we should suggest what they should do in addition to posting if that’s all they do. We shouldn’t shame one another. And I think it’s really important that we be positive and support one another. Because we’re all we have at the end of the day.
(42:57) Asma Barakat: Oh, yeah, that’s very true. And you know, if people say Oh, postings aren’t going to do anything then like, why can I just post in peace then, and if it’s so-called.. yeah, that is, that is definitely so true. Well, if you don’t have anything else that you would like to say, I think we can I can stop recording this interview now.
(43:20) Layan: Mhm.
(43:21) Asma Barakat: All right, let’s stop recording.