While Austria is preparing itself for yet another election filled with xenophobic campaigning, I stumble across this at Mark Earls‘ Herd Blog:
Channel 4 does a little online/interactive/online campaign that tries to give people a differentiated look at Islam and muslims. The idea itself is simple: they are looking for 500 Osamas around the world to tell who they are, what they do and what they like.
Osama from Indonesia loves Mangas. Osama from Nigeria loves Playstation. And I share my interest in Astronomy with Osama the Imam from the UK. Who knew?
This is great. It involves people. Makes them do something. As Mark points out it is a textbook sample for a modern campaign. But more important, this campaign lets muslims portray themselves, instead of being portrayed by hatemongers on soapboxes.
Austria could use some similar campaign these days. We need more human faces and the realization that we have more in common than what separates us in to break through the label of „non-integration-willing foreigners“ (bad translation of a bad term) and whatever that may suggest. But that would be an entirely different post.
They still need around 400, so if your name is Osama, or you know an Osama, join in.