What Discrimination Feels Like – Insightful Interview With Nicole Queen | TGI Fridays

MV: As a follow up to the recent incident with ““Bacon Put into Straw of Muslim Women’s Drink as Discrimination in TGI Fridays” and with all the support, but some unfortunate negative comments, we decided to interview Sr. Nicole Queen to help raise awareness to what it actually feels like to be “discriminated” while also getting an insight view of the story. 

I thank Sr. Nicole Queen for taking the time out to answer and discuss her personal experience. Jazakullah Khairan!

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The MV: As a born American, raised in the United States, and experienced in its culture, how did it feel like when they treated you like a minority just because of your beliefs?

Nicole Queen: As a Caucasian American I don’t really know what being a minority feels like. When I first started wearing hijab, I would feel my own people “White people” looking at me like I’m a foreigner. This is the first time someone has actually acted upon what they are thinking though and it left a horrible taste in my mouth, no pun intended.

The MV: You mentioned before that you would not file a lawsuit and that you are against this becoming something that will personally benefit you, what do you think is the greater message you want to send behind all this?

Nicole Queen: I am requesting a public on camera apology instead of a law suit or settlement. Because of all the nasty racial comments that have risen from the public…I want everyone to see that we are being respected. This isn’t about how it affected me anymore; it’s about how it affects all of us.

The MV: When your initial thought was, “this guy [waiter] does not want us at his table” and noticed that he was “tense as he served” and “didn’t dare smile or show a personality”, did you predict something coming?

Nicole Queen: I never expected anything from the waiter and it may have not been him. It was the girl who took over our table that gave me the drink. I feel like maybe there were comments made between wait staff and maybe someone thought it would be funny.

The MV: When you went back to consult with the manager (when your drink was contaminated), how do you think the manager should have handled the situation?

Nicole Queen: The manager just reacted to me like it was all an accident, he didn’t even try to appear sensitive to what I was saying and said there was no way it was done purposely. I wish it was all just an accident but there is just no way that it’s possible.

The MV: Why do you think it’s important to raise awareness against discrimination to any race, religion, or stereotype in that manner?

Nicole Queen: It’s 2013, if we can’t all live together with respect then when is that gonna happen? I see the year 3013 and we are racist against the aliens! Lol…discrimination is never ok, in any shape or form. I think all Caucasians should walk a mile in the shoes of another race, it would change the world.

The MV: Unfortunately, there were some negative comments made by some people, what does say about the general knowledge people have about Islam and what message would like to send out to them?

Nicole Queen: I’m no stranger to the comments, people have been leaving mean hateful comments on my videos and articles for years, they hate that a white girl became a Muslim, and they know nothing about Islam so their comments are almost humorous because they are so blind and uneducated. It’s sad and I have always avoided reading them. It was eye opening to a lot of people in our community though to see how many people around here and all over seem to hate us. Us being Muslims.

The MV: The way you handled the situation, sticking up against discrimination and without it having to personally benefit you, makes you a role model for other Muslim women and even other minorities, what future precedent would you like to set and what message would you like to send to people who are similarly discriminated?

Nicole Queen: My message is that it’s never ok to treat people with disrespect because of their faith, race, or any reason. Never just walk away and say nothing, you never know how far your words can carry and how many people you may inspire. I’m proud to call myself a Muslim even if it means I am looked at as a foreigner in my own country, God is worth it all and we are all in this together.

MV: Again we thank Sr. Nicole Queen for allowing us to interview her and pray that her message against discrimination goes out strong, insha’Allah (God-Willingly)!  

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