Black in Cairo: US Blogger Talks Egypt, Mubarak and Gender Relations

When you were living in Cairo, did you feel like something was going to happen?

You could feel the tension in the air in the city. There was such a lack of social awareness and social welfare networks so there was a huge detachment between people and their government.

How did you follow the revolution?

I was following the people I know who tweet in Egypt or about Egypt and when they dropped off, I turned to Al Jazeera.

Do you plan on going back to Egypt any time soon?

I don’t think I want to go through that again. It was a difficult place for me to live. I don’t know if things will change significantly.

While watching the protests, was there anyone for which you developed an affinity? I enjoyed Wael Ghonim.

I didn’t really cling on to a specific person but I really paid attention to Mohamed El Baradei. He arrived in Cairo around the same time I did. I knew he could either divide or unite people but he became overshadowed by the people themselves. At the end the day, it was the Egyptian people themselves that made the revolution happen.

How did it feel to look at Tahir Square when you were just there five months earlier?

I lived two blocks down from Tahir Square. You could see my apartment in some of my pictures and living downtown became too much. I was talking to my former roommate and we were laughing because we could point out places we used to go to, we could have watched the whole thing from our balcony.

I had my moments of doubts that the revolution would be successful. After the first Mubarak speech, I tweeted some sarcastic bits. When the revolution happened, I was ecstatic. It’s a huge accomplishment for any oppressed people to topple their oppressor. I hope it will go in a way that will benefit all the Egyptian people. I wish them the best.

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