Turning the tables

Muslim academic donates $1 to charity for every hate tweet she receives

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Susan Carland (R) with husband Waleed Aly, Australia's "Muslim power couple." (Facebook/Susan Carland)

An academic in Australia — half of the country’s “Muslim power couple” — has decided to confuse the Islamophobes who troll her on social media, by donating $1 to children’s charity UNICEF each time they insult her. Dr. Susan Carland, a former Muslim Australian of the Year who’s married to media personality Waheed Aly, has raised more than $1,000 since making the pledge just over two weeks ago.

Carland told Fairfax Media the trifecta of being an “unapologetic Muslim woman” attracts a lot of hate on Twitter, and considered how she could use the social media platform as a force for good: “I thought, what’s a good thing I can do? What is the complete antithesis of what these people are doing? They are putting so much ugly into the world. I thought what is something good I can put into the world.”

Carland, who teaches gender studies, politics, and sociology at Melbourne’s Monash University, has used a variety of platforms, including Twitter and Facebook, to share her views on religion, immigration and society. To date, her response to trolls has generally been to mute them. “Sometimes I engage them — I write back ‘someone needs a hug,'” she said.

“Thank you for your kindness, everyone,” she posted on Thursday. “And shout out to the haters who still can’t help themselves.”

Read the full story at the Sydney Morning Herald.

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