England cricketer Moeen Ali detained at Birmingham airport
11 April, 2016
England cricketer Moeen Ali was detained at Birmingham airport on Saturday for about 40 minutes owing to ‘airport rules and regulations’, while he was on his way to join the rest of the Worcestershire side for the opening game of the 2016 County Championship.
Ali felt humiliated at being singled out and stopped, and vented his frustration on Twitter. However, owing to the various kinds of people who feel obliged to air their opinions on social media, this led to a further compounding of the controversy, with some users comparing Ali’s appearance with that of ISIS terrorists.
The 28-year-old said that he never had to face a similar issue while travelling with the rest of the team.
Ali’s family hails from Azad Kashmir, Pakistan, and the cricketer is often regarded as a role model for British Asians. He has grown what is perhaps the most noticeable beard in English cricket since WG Grace, and has spoken eloquently about his faith in the past. Incidentally, he was born at Birmingham, the same city where he had to face the humiliation.
It seems that it was his beard and his faith that led to him being detained at his hometown airport on Saturday. There have been no clarifications from the airp[ort authorities yet, but this appears to be a case of racial profiling at its worst and most ignorant.
While some of Ali’s followers said that this was something they were used to, and that he did not have to face this on a regular basis because of his celebrity status. However, there were some other comments which do not deserve any analysis and are representative of the worst kind of sentiments seen so rampantly online