The hashtag was trending worldwide on Monday morning.
Amid the hostage crisis in Sydney, Australia—which now appears to have finally come to an end—social media is overflowing with the hashtag #illridewithyou. Meant initially as an offer to actually ride with Muslims who might feel unsafe using public transportation in the wake of the hostage situation, the hashtag has now been adopted globally as a gesture of solidarity with Muslims everywhere.
The hashtag was created when Twitter user @MichaelJames_TV shared a screenshot of a woman’s Facebook status about how she tried to comfort a Muslim woman at a train station.
Another Twitter user, @sirtessa, came up with the idea for the hashtag after retweeting the interaction.
If you reg take the #373 bus b/w Coogee/MartinPl, wear religious attire, & don’t feel safe alone: I’ll ride with you. @ me for schedule.— Sir Tessa (@sirtessa) December 15, 2014
Maybe start a hashtag? What’s in #illridewithyou?— Sir Tessa (@sirtessa) December 15, 2014
From there, it took off.
#illridewithyou means a lot to a Muslim like me who spots a beard or veiled sisters, thanks for understanding not every muslim is terrorist.— Mohsin Khan (@mohsinnow) December 15, 2014
#illridewithyou may be the best thing that's ever happened on Twitter— richard (@richtard) December 15, 2014
For me, #illridewithyou is literal. I'll sit next to you and we can use our phones because I'm not capable of conversation in the morning.— Sir Tessa (@sirtessa) December 15, 2014
As always, though, there are some curmudgeons.
The people in the cafe are the ones who deserve your thoughts not some imaginary fellow bus passenger.— Chris Kenny (@chriskkenny) December 15, 2014
As of Monday morning the hashtag was trending worldwide. For updates on the situation, The Guardian's Sydney bureau is running a live-blog.
This post originally appeared on Quartz, an Atlantic partner site.
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