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Thursday, August 23, 2007

Arab Teachers Need Not Apply

Back in the day in the turn of the century the infestation as it was called, of the Irish and Scotch in America was a blight on the lower and middle classes of America. By sticking together as families they joined together with other families and given the time that needs to pass they inserted their lives, their history onto the fabric that is America. The Irish and the Scott’s were not alone in this effort. People from many shores foreign to our nation assimilated to the rules and laws and worked the system as they should have.

God bless them all for becoming Americans! If not for the many nationalities and their sacrifices then we would all be tea sipping European snobs with an attitude that would make the Cheshire Cat throw up. Canadian’s might just look up to us but that is a stretch.

Racism in America is not just against people of a different skin color. Religion, lands that any religion come from can scare the simplest of minds if they are told to fear it. It is so easy to spread fear when waving the flag in defense of your position given the violent act against America that was September 11th . Fear is easy, knowing the difference between extremist and an American Muslim educator are two very different things.

In the doorway to America there is a very ugly battle that is going on and fear is at the heart of it and it is happening in the schools started to change racism against an Arab, a Muslim, a Middle East culture that is not attacking America but trying to assimilate.

Over at the Washington Post they have this to say about this educator stepping down because of her faith and her commitment to her school…

In New York, a Word Starts a Fire
Arabic Educator's Brief Defense of 'Intifada' T-Shirts Makes Her a Target

By Robin Shulman
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, August 24, 2007

NEW YORK -- The goals were clear when Sheneen Jackson enrolled her son in one of the first public schools in the nation to focus on Arabic language and culture. First, her 11-year-old would master Arabic. Later, doors would open for him in government and diplomacy -- maybe a job at the United Nations, international travel, the prospect of contributing to Middle East peace.

Instead, Jackson discovered that the distrust and tension that infuse many Middle East issues had tainted the Brooklyn middle school.

"It's unfortunate, but I know a lot of people in New York are sensitive," Jackson, 33, a Verizon technician, said of the controversy over the school. "That's the whole premise of the school."

Officials had no sooner announced in February the formation of the Khalil Gibran International Academy than conservative columnists and media outlets attacked, suggesting the principal -- an observant Muslim Arab woman -- might push an agenda of Islamist extremism.


Daniel Pipes, a pro-Israel conservative who created Campus Watch, a Web site dedicated to exposing alleged bias in university Middle East-studies programs, wrote in the New York Sun that the school would cause problems because "learning Arabic in [and] of itself promotes an Islamic outlook."

A group called the Stop the Madrassa Coalition coalesced in Brooklyn to fight it. Various blogs, Fox News, the New York Post and the New York Sun variously probed Almontaser's background and editorialized against the school.
- Washington Post

Please read the entire piece at the Washington Post! Think about it and read on here…

Let’s call this what it is and put it out in the open. Is the Arab and Jewish fight still going on in America for the sake of calling someone else Un-American? This isn’t about being an American as much as it is attacking another American out of fear of what has been going on for thousands of years over there. This isn’t there and that is not hear! America is the melting pot of the world for a reason and we tend to accept other people from all over the world for a reason. That what makes another nation weak makes America stronger. Why that happens is not about separation of our people as much as it is about being a true American.

Can we all take a page out of the immigrant Irish Catholic’s to America and immigrant Irish Protestant’s book and pretty much say that the children of those immigrants have forgotten the hate of days and lands long gone? That s just one very obvious example.

While all of our nations nationalities have melted together and families gather for their religious belief and start schools to promote their faith, should we fear them for doing so? I don’t honestly think so. Catholic Schools populate every city in America and so do Jewish learning schools. If your family is fortunate enough your kids can go to private schools that promote your family values and sense of belonging. It’s just people gathering in an educational format that is familiar and comfortable to them as a community.

When people tell you to be afraid of any community or religion or race, then they have no clue as to who or what that community they are attacking believes or inspires their children to be as Americans. Fear of the unknown is easy, selling fear and anger is easy if you tell people who is to blame and declare them Un-American..

You can call yourself a true American no matter how many generations you are down the ladder when you accept the fact that the Statue of Liberty welcomes all. There is no limitation or religious requirement to come to our nation and become an American citizen. Spreading hate from whatever religion you demand is better than another is not American and never should be. Our shores are for all people and Americans that convert to the Muslim faith do not automatically hate people of other religions.

Religion is the battle that is over there, it isn’t here! That is the difference between living in America and living in the Middle East, a place where you could be killed for being a Christian, a Jew, or a Muslim. Freedom of religion is something our founding fathers did not limit to just the chosen faiths. They left the doors open for all.

Think about it.


Other folks talking about Arab issues in America...

But perhaps what is most interesting and dismaying is the sentiment simmering underneath the fear expressed by Mohammed and other New York Arabs that the community is caught in its own terrible crucible, not unlike the ordeals of predecessor communities, like the Italians, the Japanese, the Irish, and the Jews. Dozens of conversations with Arabs of different national backgrounds yield variations on the same theme. "Everyone had to suffer. This is just our time."
Many of the people interviewed for this story refused to give their last names or to have their pictures taken; this included those who had registered and claimed to be "in status." Many said they feared retribution from the authorities for speaking out, implying that being in the U.S. legally is a favor that can be taken away for speaking out of place.
- The Village Voice

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