This Instagram Post About the Paris Attacks Is Going Viral

November 14th 2015

The world watched in horror as gunmen and suicide bombers attacked at least five locations around Paris on Friday night, killing more than 120 people and injuring hundreds more. One writer's response to the violence—or, specifically, the public's reaction to the attacks—is going viral.

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Karuna Ezara Parikh expressed sorrow over the violence that overwhelmed the French capital, offering condolences to those affected by the attacks. But she argued that it is the world, rather than Paris exclusively, that people should pray for, because there are people suffering from violent extremism in other countries as well.

"I woke this morning deeply disturbed by the news from Paris, but more amazed by the attention it received on social media," Parikh wrote on Instagram. "I understand Paris is a beloved and familiar space for a lot of people, but it troubled me that Beirut, a city my father grew up in, had received so little attention after the horrific bombings two days earlier.

A suicide bombing in Beirut, the capital of Lebanon, killed at least 41 people on Thursday, the BBC reported. It was the deadliest bombing the country had witnessed since the end of Lebanon's civil war in 1990. Parikh also described recent violence in Baghdad, the capital of Iraq. She wrote that the city had "received even less attention after the senseless bombing that took place there last week."

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"Worst of all, I found the understanding of the refugee crisis skewed and simplistic," Parikh continued. "If you've been following the journeys of the people leaving their homes around the world right now, perhaps you'll understand why the words #SyrianRefugeeCrisis are just as devastating as #PrayForParis.


In the wake of the attacks in Paris, French president François Hollande declared a state of emergency and closed the country's borders, effectively keeping out Syrian refugees who are fleeing violence and religious persecution. Some conservative politicians have suggested that allowing refugees to enter Europe puts countries at risk of extremist violence.

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Parikh said that it is time to pray for humanity and "make all places beloved."