A Muslim athlete has made history as the first hijabi woman ever to appear on the cover of a US fitness magazine.
Rahaf Khatib, a hijab-wearing marathon runner from Michigan, has been featured on the latest cover of Women’s Running Magazine.
Women’s Running editor-in-chief Jessie Sebor told BuzzFeed that the magazine discovered Khatib when she reached out to them. “She emailed us citing a lack of Muslim hijabi women represented in women’s magazines and challenged us to change that. We couldn’t help but hear her,” Sebor said.
Khatib, a 32-year-old originally from Damascus, moved to US in the 1980s. She currently resides in Michigan with her husband and three kids. When asked about her response to being on the cover, Khatib said that she didn’t expect a response to her mail at all.
“I feel like I need to represent the underrepresented,” she said. “We should all be accepted no matter your identity, no matter your race, no matter your sexuality, and no matter your religion. We’re all crossing the same finish line, literally and figuratively.”
Khatib added that even though there’s a “negative climate with all the rhetoric about Muslims” right now, she believes that, especially as the presidential election approaches, her cover can make a statement about Muslims in the US. “It’s gotten a great response and there have been no negative comments yet,” Buzzfeed reported.
“We are here, we are present, and we are in these fields just as any other athletes are,” Khatib further added.
The response on social media has been impeccable too:
— Khaled Beydoun (@KhaledBeydoun) September 22, 2016
— Susan Rinkunas (@sueonthetown) September 22, 2016
— Amelia Gapin (@EntirelyAmelia) September 23, 2016
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