The Same Man

23-04-2014 | Aäron Vanmaele

Since a couple of months, people have been looking at me strange
What happened? What changed? Is it the way I dress, my attitude?
I don’t know, I’ve been looking for the answers
In the beginning I didn’t mind, I could’ve cared less
But now it stays on my mind, I’m no longer careless
So I decided to speak my mind and to air this

Since a couple of months, I’ve had this beard
Could this be the reason people look at me like I’m weird?
Am I no longer the same man? Have I converted to a religion a lot of people fear?
No, I haven’t. But what if I did?
Would you look at me different? If yes, why?
Being a muslim wouldn’t make me different, yet a lot of people see some bearded men as aliens
I’ve never been discriminated, and I probably never will be
But since I’ve had this beard , muslim men said Salaam Alaikum and some white people ignored me
I found that horrible, it shows that we all have these preconceived ideas that are worthless
The fact that you wouldn’t say hello to me regardless isn’t right

A lot of people told me that I should get rid of my beard, some even said I look like a terrorist
They should get rid of their stereotypes, they are the terrorists
I call it mental terrorism, trying to shape people to their image
I didn’t know that a little bit of facial hair could change people’s opinion about me that much
I also didn’t know that it could change my opinion about people that much
And for those who still haven’t figured out yet, yes I’m still the same man. Just a little bit wiser

Thank you very much!

Dit gedicht werd eerder gepubliceerd op Into The Urban.

>>> Aäron Vanmaele is laatstejaarsstudent journalistiek, blogger en liep tien weken stage bij Kif Kif.