During the CAA NRC protests a large portion of the Urban middle class population (Muslim & otherwise) took part in a country wide dissent for the *first* time in their lives.
Everyone was high on emotion & we were all making mistakes & figuring it out as we went.
There were many genuine people who in their excitement didn't realise that they had grabbed the mic.
There were others who expressed their dissent through jokes, singing & dancing which sometimes ended up trivialising the cause.
But here's the thing...
During the chaos of police violence, threats etc
Regular ppl didn't have the time or awareness to understand power dynamics or concepts such as "passing the mic" or the distinction between solidarity & speaking over.
All that mattered to them was raising their voice at any cost
I am not talking about those who consciously hijacked the protests.
I'm talking about those who didn't know any better. They saw their Muslim friend under threat & felt they had to raise their voice for them in whatever manner possible.
Now after several months have passed, regular people (myself included) are slowly understanding the true meaning of allyship, solidarity, passing the mic etc
At this juncture, we must remember to be kind. We make mistakes & we learn.
Call out those vile closet bigots who had vested interests in their participation of the protests,
but in the process dont end up mocking those who didn't know any better; the sincere ppl with hearts of gold who couldn't stand seeing you in pain.
I don't fear losing their support.
But if someone risked his family ties & personal safety to stand by me, I can respect that.
They all learn eventually just like we did, but we must be kind to those genuine folk in the process, for we were once ignorant as well :)