World of Rizvan

Practicing Christians are a threat to our world.

Such a statement would spark an outrage not only in the west, but almost anywhere in the world. Political photography is about delivering shock value.  If that type of statement does not SHOCK, then we would be deeply saddened with the level of our ignorance. Such a generalized statement against a whole group of people should be regarded as grossly unfair and inaccurate.

However, similar allegations are being put forth against a group of people which comprises of nearly one fifth of all mankind. I am referring to the community of Muslims in this world. Even though it is one of the fastest growing and most prominent religions in the world, there is little doubt that the average westerner has a negative perception of Islam or Muslims in general. Yet, it is getting ever so difficult to improve this image. Karan Johar, the director of the movie, “My Name is Khan” tackles this matter and makes a commendable attempt at raising awareness of these issues.

In the first ten minutes of the movie, the protagonist is shown to be mumbling some words in Arabic while shuffling rocks between his fingers (doing Tasbeeh – a form of worship). This attracts the attention of an innocent-looking, ipod-listening girl. In the following scene, the protagonist is immediately greeted by a US border security guard and is escorted to a room. Where, his baggage is thoroughly searched, his prayer cap is held up as if there may be something malicious hidden inside such a simple piece of cloth. The main character is stripped half naked, humiliated, until something surprising is shown to the viewers. An Autism ID card, on which the name of the protagonist is written: Mr. Rizwan Khan. Sadly however, the Muslim name is not a surprise at all as we have all come to associate anything even mildly Islamic with terrorism.