I was born and raised in Rabat, the capital of the Kingdom of Morocco, which makes me Moroccan. I am not from Monaco and I am not from the Middle East either.
Yes, Morocco is in Africa and no I am not black… or white. I think of myself as chocolate- milk toned!
Yes, I refuse to check the white race box when filling forms and no I am not weird! I am not a statistic nor do I want to be.
Yes, my first language is Arabic and no it’s not your typical Egyptian, Syrian and/or Lebanese Arabic.
Yes, I speak my Arabic like you speak yours and no it’s not my problem if you don’t understand. Blame the media or blame me!
Yes, my Arabic has hints of French, English and Spanish and no it’s not because I am showing off! Diversity can be expressed in so many ways… I express mine through my speech.
Yes, my parents are both of Amazigh origins which makes me of Amazigh origins and no it’s not too complicated. It’s my identity.
Yes, I wear a piece of cloth on my head and no it’s not because I am oppressed or have no hair! My life, my head, my choices. I can explain why I choose to cover and no I am not justifying or asking for permissions! I do it out of courtesy and maybe just maybe you would understand and carry the message forward.
Yes, I am under thirty and no I have no control over this one. We add one year to our age every twelve months and I just happen to be under thirty for now.
Yes, I am under thirty and I live alone in a foreign country away from my family and no I am not married or engaged for that matter!
Yes, I am not married and no I am not single! I have loving parents, friends and family and I am showered with love and attention. I am not single. I am a small community! I have a village… My village. That makes me not single by My definition. Since we’re all making up definitions and putting them on paper. I am making up mine.
Yes, I am not married and I live abroad and have a career and no I am not in the “entertainment” industry if that’s what you are worried about.
Yes, I am all of the above and I happened to land in this side of the world for now. No, I don’t intend on writing an essay about why I should be granted the right to do what I spent my life preparing while having you put me in the dreaded red triangle!
I am Moroccan, single and under thirty for now. In a couple years I will be out of this category, at least by one dimension, but my identity, my values and opinions will not go against anything I believe in. It is me now and it will be me then. Don’t put me in a box… Or a triangle!
What are your “so what?!” statements?