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Letters | On the brink of ‘us vs. them’ after the Marathon

Cherishing freedom of religion — and support of fellow Bostonians

The Islamic Society of Boston held Friday prayer April 26, with clergy of other faiths present.

Essdras M Suarez/Globe Staff

The Islamic Society of Boston held Friday prayer April 26, with clergy of other faiths present.

The article Praying for peace — and understanding” highlighted support for the Muslim community from Jewish and Christian clergy. As an ordinary Bostonian Muslim, who wears a headscarf, I wanted to add a note saying how much I appreciate the support I have received from other ordinary Bostonians.

I have always loved the freedom of religion here in the United States. Wear a scarf, don’t wear a scarf; wear a bikini, wear a burka — it’s completely up to you. In my 10 years of wearing a scarf here, I’ve never received anything but smiles, support, and friendliness.

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After the Boston Marathon, I was a bit apprehensive about whether people’s reactions would have changed. Might people feel that I was wearing the same “uniform” as the suspected bombers, who had just inflicted such devastating pain on the victims, their families, and all of Boston?

But I needn’t have worried. If anything, it seemed like people were making an extra effort to share smiles and friendly “good mornings,” as if they knew how I might be feeling. I can’t tell you how happy that makes me, and how glad I am that this is the country where my children are growing up.

Dearbhla McHenry


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