Gallery: Muslim community holds Dupont vigil to mourn slain teen
It's been a busy week for me, but I wanted to do a quick gallery post on the candlelight vigil I photographed last night in Dupont Circle.
A week ago, 17-year-old Nabra Hassanen would never have imagined a whole city would soon be speaking her name. The tragedy that befell her was sudden, cruel, and, by newly-emerging accounts, unspeakably subhuman. Police are investigating her death in Virginia as a result of "road rage," but the multiple members of the Muslim community I spoke with last night found that hard to believe. The prevailing thought: even if it wasn't technically a hate crime, it definitely had the impacts of one. "I don't want to live in a world where Muslim women should feel afraid to walk down the street," said one speaker to the hundreds gathered.
They laid flowers and candles down at the foot of the fountain, followed by a public Iftar - the post-sunset meal held to break fast during Ramadan.
UPDATE 6/21: I just learned that the flower/candle memorial was set on fire this morning. Fox 5 DC reports that a 24-year-old man from South Carolina has been arrested in connection with the burning. I hadn't observed hostility from anyone in the area before leaving last night, though a disruption was considered likely enough that the organizers started the event by introducing a pair of designated "de-escalators."
This is what the memorial looked like:
Some of my video clips from throughout, published by Ruptly:
Another vigil is planned tonight in Nabra's hometown of Reston, Virginia. Hundreds are anticipated to be at that one, taking place shortly after her funeral. I'm planning to do a full piece which I'll hopefully have posted late tonight or early tomorrow. Meanwhile, here's a few more photos from last night: