21 Questions With Lubna Hashem, and Other Questions to Ask an Activist
As I was searching for spoken-word poetry, I came across a poem called, Revolution—a poem so compelling it motivated me to write, 21 Questions With Lubna Hashem. The video fades in with the word, R-evol-ution, with the word “love,” spelled backward. From that point on, it was abundantly clear that I was in for something special. Lubna Hashem, or Just Lubna, is a talented young-woman who finds herself at the center of a Middle Eastern war—at the center of sparking change. On her journey, we find her in the country she loves deeply. Here, we hear her words:
Quianna Canada: The poem Revolution speaks of war, and rising against it. In your own words, outside of the poem, how has war impacted your life?
Lubna Hashem: War made me realize the value of Peace and how precious and priceless it is.
Quianna Canada: We see different images of broken peace, hatred, and tyranny in your video. From the video can we gather that you’ve been a victim of broken peace, hatred, and tyranny?
Lubna Hashem: Yes, because of the many issues happening here in the Middle East, radicals, extremists, poverty, injustice, racism and fake peace (pretending that everything is okay when it’s not).
Lubna Hashem on Family
Quianna Canada: When it comes to world change and peace, would you say, your parents were leaders in that direction?
Lubna Hashem: Yes, of course. They’re dedicating their lives for that, they sacrificed a lot and they raised my sister and I to take that peaceful message and spread it to the world to try to make a change and not just die like any other person.
Quianna Canada: On a scale of 1-10, how would you rate your parents’ leadership?
Lubna Hashem: Absolutely a 10, they made so many sacrifices, I appreciate them.
Quianna Canada: What living person, other than a family member, do you believe brings new leadership that is necessary for change to exists? What kind of changes get you out of bed.
Lubna Hashem: From people, I personally know, Mr. David Knaus and his family along with so many young people I know who deserve to be appreciated more. From people, I don’t personally know but have seen their work, Prince Ea, Hanan Al-Hroub (Palestinian teacher who in 2016 was the second winner of the Global Teacher Prize.)
Lubna Hashem on Revolution
Quianna Canada: Do you remember your first spoken-word performance? How did you feel “speaking up” about the things that mattered the most to you?
Lubna Hashem: Yes. It felt so incredible that I got the chance to deliver a positive message to people and be heard and appreciated for it.
Quianna Canada: What does the word “conformity” mean to you?
Lubna Hashem: I haven’t reached that level of “conformity” to know how it feels like and what it means to me, to be honest.
Quianna Canada: What would the world according to your Revolution look like?
Lubna Hashem: A world—that is based on knowledge, education, peace, kindness, acceptance, appreciating the creative people rather than today’s role models of empty people, a world filled with love and lacks injustice, racism and poverty and most importantly, a world full of real Human beings.
Quianna Canada: Spoken-word is powerful. What other ways have you used it to create change?
Lubna Hashem: I use Spoken-word to talk about the hidden feelings that hurt people and make them feel like there’s someone that understands them, I make videos of my poetry and other videos to talk about things that matter to people maybe I’d inspire somebody to join me and talk about those things so we can make a change to the world together.
Quianna Canada: In what ways have you risen against persecution?
Lubna Hashem: Since I was little I never allowed any action of oppression, I’d always defend my rights and other people’s right, I never saw something wrong and stayed silent about it, I would stand up for myself and for people we refer to as “underdogs”, I still do all of that. Also, through my YouTube videos and poetry.
Quianna Canada: Name 3 of your favorite words.
Lubna Hashem: Compassion, Peace, and Hope.
Quianna Canada: What word do you dislike the most? Why?
Lubna Hashem: Hate. Because it’s a very strong word that is thrown out so simply, people shouldn’t use it that easily because most of the time, deep down inside, they don’t really mean it.
Quianna Canada: Are there any words that make you uncomfortable when you hear them? Why?
Lubna Hashem: Terrorist. it doesn’t just make me uncomfortable, it makes me mad, because I don’t like how a lot of people have a bad idea of Muslims and Arabs in general and how they assume that every Muslim or Arab is a Terrorist based on what they see on the Media but it’s not true at all.
Quianna Canada: If words could heal, what would those words be?
Lubna Hashem: Strong, Enough, and Love.
Lubna Hashem on Activism
Quianna Canada: Are you an activist?
Lubna Hashem: I’m willing to campaign for social change and create more activities with more people when I go to college.
Quianna Canada: Can your fans expect to hear and possibly see a new video about a new era of peaceful co-existence?
Lubna Hashem: Yes, of course.
Quianna Canada: If someone made a movie of your life, what would that be?
Lubna Hashem: A girl who is a little different than people her age and is trying to reach her goals no matter how impossible it might seem.
Quianna Canada: Are you a leader? What would a world family under Lubna, look like?
Lubna Hashem: There won’t be orders and people to obey them, the people’s voices will rule, we’ll all work together despite the differences, people will be educated, organized, appreciated and our main purpose is achieving a community’s benefits rather than individual, personal, selfish benefits, and we’ll be all dedicated to rise with our country.
Quianna Canada: Given the current situation, do you believe a non-violent movement like Gandhi led would be possible for the United States and your people back home?
Lubna Hashem: Yes, because we need to change for the better, this is without hurting anyone, we can teach our children to accept the differences rather than hatred towards other groups of people, and that’s one step of many other steps to change without violence.
Quianna Canada: Do you have a special someone in your life? How have they shaped your movement?
Lubna Hashem: My Dad is very special to me, he taught since I was little how to grow to be an independent woman with a strong opinion that doesn’t fear speaking the truth even if she’d die for it. Without him I wouldn’t grow up to be this woman that I am today.
Quianna Canada: What’s next for you?
Lubna Hashem: I will continue making videos for now and when I get into university, I want to study Journalism and meet new people so we can do activities and campaign to make changes at least in our community.
Quianna Canada: Anything else you’d like the world to know?
Lubna Hashem: Thank you for giving me the chance to speak, I really appreciate this and I hope someday I’ll get to inspire people and bring them all together to make positive change in our world, it’s a long road but we’ll get there someday, I have hope.