"I was called a 'bloody Muslim' on the school run, in front of my daughter. Now don't wear my hijab when she's with me."
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull decided to celebrate Harmony Day (the country's national day for celebrating diversity) on Mar 21 by watering down the race-hate laws in the country.
Turnbull said the government will remove the words “offend, insult and humiliate” from the country's Racial Discrimination Act.
They will now be replaced with the words "harass, intimidate" – a move he believes will protect people's ability to speak freely.
But, the change also makes race-hate claims much harder to prove in court.
Soon after the announcement, Australian columnist Adam Liaw shared his own heartbreaking story via a series of tweets.
Australian author and journalist Benjamin Law then caught the series of tweets and asked people in the country to share their stories under the #FreedomOfSpeech hashtag.
At the age of 10, I was at the local pool as a group of white boys held my head underwater, laughing at me for being Asian. #FreedomOfSpeech
Islamophobia has also made its way to Australia and Muslims have their own stories to share.
Non-Muslim Arabs have dealt with their fair share of hate as well.
Their stories are truly heartbreaking.
1. Is this not insulting? Humiliating? Offensive?
2. Some were told to go "back to the desert"
3. At just nine-years-old …
Being called a terrorist after 9/11, and getting terrorist jokes aimed at me. I was 9.#FreedomofSpeech
4. "Too many times to count"
I've been called a terrorist too many times to count. I've been stopped by cops + other authorities too many times to count #FreedomofSpeech
5. "I had a guy yell at me for wearing the hijab"
When i was riding public transport i had a guy yell at me for wearing the hijab #freedomofspeech
6. "I was called a bloody Muslim"
I was called a 'bloody Muslim' on the school run, in front of my daughter. Now don't wear my hijab when she's with me. #FreedomofSpeech https://twitter.com/mrbenjaminlaw/status/844020354448211968 …
7. People's misconceptions have stirred a lot of hate
Being abused for being a Muslim…I'm Greek Orthodox. Not all arabs are Muslims, but we will defend them because we are 1. #FreedomOfSpeech
8. Some have even bought into the horrific stereotypes
Being told by my childhood-(ex)friend that my husband must be a wife-beater since I am Muslim/Iranian.#freedomofspeech
9. Some were asked if they even "speak English"
being asked if I "even spoke english" just because I'm Arab, when in reality my english is better than theirs EVER will be. #FreedomOfSpeech
10. Some are afraid of Arab families because they're huge and may "take over Australia"
My friend is Lebanese. Her colleague told her he's worried Arab people have big families so they can "take over" Australia #Freedomofspeech
11. Racial discrimination is not absent from job interviews either
When you're asked if you're an Arab by two white frat boys at a job interview #FreedomofSpeech