Mubarka is a Canadian born woman of Pakistani parents. She grew up in Toronto among other Canadian children and attended university where she received a degree in commerce. Today she holds a prominent position with a transportation company.
Mubarka used to be as mainstream as any Canadian young adult can be; in fact, those who met her for the first time may have been struck by her vivacious personality. Her effervescence went hand in hand with her distinct Asian beauty which she shamelessly displayed with stylish clothing including the occasional low cut top. Mubarka used to converse for hours over topics as varied as business practices in Canadian politics to contemporary music.
It comes, therefore, as a shock, when one learns what path Mubarka has recently chosen for herself. She will be wedding a Pakistani man...a devout Muslim, whom she has never met but who was chosen for her when she was an infant. Not only that, but she has donned the Hijab for the first time in her life and is strictly observing Muslim tenets. She has chosen subservience to a man and subservience to his religion over the gender freedom offered her by the Western democracy she grew up in, and she's done so without so much as a whimper of protest.
When asked why she has picked the life of Sharia, Mubarka simply states that it is as Muhammad would will, and that there is no greater prophet than Muhammad. When asked how she will raise her children, Mubarka makes it clear...they will be raised as Muslims first, and Canadians second.
Hardi is perhaps one of the most pleasant Canadian women anyone could ever meet. In her capacity as a caregiver of seniors, she is gentle, loving, and incredibly patient. She laughs deliciously at the kind of comical moments that only seniors can deliver and her mood seems to be permanently stuck on happy. Hardi is an angel.
Those who encounter Hardi for the first time will be struck not by her character, that comes later, but by the fact that she is virtually covered from head to toe by traditional Indonesian Muslim attire. She covers her entire body with colourful costume that leaves only her hands and face exposed. Hardi is devout, in fact, so devout that during Christmas any appreciation given her by way of gifting must be void of any reference to the season. Furthermore, during quiet moments when Hardi is free to discuss her Muslim faith, it becomes clear she believes wholeheartedly in the strict observance of Sharia. For her, Islam in its pure non-secular form, is truth.
Both Hardi and Mubarka present us with a perplexing conundrum because they are members of what has become known as the "peaceful" Muslim majority. They don't have a violent bone in their bodies, and are clearly law abiding and productive members of Canadian society. But, they are also both part of a very small minority within Canada where they and their fellow Muslims have very little effect on Canadian politics or on the evolution of Canadian cultural norms. What if though, Hardi and Mubarka were part of a Muslim majority where they and their co-religionists held the power?
Both women are Muslims first and Canadians second. No matter how much respect one may have for either woman's character, there is little doubt where either would place her loyalty if faced with choosing between the Canadian traditions of liberty for all, or Sharia. There is also little doubt that if they were part of a majority, they would acquiesce to the demands of the Muslim clerical class and choose Sharia for all Canadians.
It is therefore irrelevant in the grand scheme of things whether or not Hardi or Mubarka are "good" people; most people on the planet are, no matter their religion, race, or culture. What matters in the greater sense, is that as parts of the Muslim collective, neither woman would set aside her Muslim beliefs in order to safeguard and protect the full rights of non-Muslims to live as they choose. What's even more disturbing, is that both women have experienced the gender freedoms afforded them in Canada, yet both have voluntarily resigned themselves to the greater Muslim collective.
As long as each woman is part of a small minority within Canada, she offers Canada much; but once she becomes part of a significant minority, or heaven forbid, a majority, she becomes dangerous. Why? Because Muslims wherever they form a majority choose Islamic norms over the broader more tolerant standards of the West. If given a chance, as has been clearly demonstrated the world over, they would unravel hundreds of years of hard fought human rights gains and replace them with the medieval practices of their faith. As such, both Hardi and Mubarka are simply bit players in a monstrous and destructive Muslim vortex that would drag civilization backwards hundreds of years.