Pots and kettles
Concerning Lisa M. Collins’ recent article: Osama Siblani, an Arab-American Muslim, is entitled to his opinion (“Arab advocate,” Metro Times, March 19-25). What is frustrating to me, an American Jew who has Palestinian, Chaldean and Lebanese friends, is the unmistakable bias in his viewpoint that is just a few notches below the yowling, bloodthirsty, jihad-crying fundamentalists whose actions according to Mr. Siblani are “explainable.” Since when is the intentional targeting of innocent children explainable? I agree there are atrocities committed by Israelis that are inexcusable and go unpunished when the victim is a Palestinian — and then there is the confiscation of lands. This is what terrorists do best: They give an excuse to their targeted enemy to reply with extreme prejudice and martial apartheid.
Will Siblani criticize the genocidal actions of Saddam, the occupation of Lebanon by Syria? Will he support the Kurdish struggle for independence after their genocidal gassing by fellow Arabs?
It is easy to use the universal common denominator of blaming the non-Muslim — and, of course, the Jews — for problems in his part of the world. I agree that United States policies have been for a large part politically and economically expedient throughout most of our history. We are no angels either. —Ron Wolf, West Bloomfield
Don’t follow the herd
I just had to write about Jack Lessenberry’s column (Politics & Prejudices, Metro Times, March 12-18). I deeply appreciate the service you provide in illuminating that we have a power-hungry, self-deluded egomaniac running the integrity of a once-great and unified country into the ground.
My boyfriend works for a company that delivers liquor to Chaldean-owned stores throughout greater Detroit. Today, before his employers sent him out on his routes, he was given a flyer warning drivers to “keep an eye on the Arabs.” This is an outrage. They tell us to go buy duct tape and extra water, then we, like the submissive sheep we are, travel in herds to the stores to “prepare for the worst.” I’m not going to let them scare me. And with people like Lessenberry enlightening and informing the public, I don’t doubt that my beliefs are shared by others. —Starlesha Brown, Detroit
It’s happened before
Curt Guyette’s column is very good and very much on track (“Straight to the source,” Metro Times, March 19-25). But I am a little surprised that the American public has not seen this coming for some time now. Think about it: How many years now have politicians been out to modify or to outright eliminate bits and pieces of our Bill of Rights? The Second Amendment comes screaming to mind. It was only a matter of time before other amendments would be — and now are — targeted.
Once any of our constitutional amendments are allowed to go the way of the dodo bird, I have little doubt we will live in a state much worse than Iraq. —Jonathon Kecskes, St Clair Shores
This is in regards to Keith A. Owens’ comments on Rosa Parks (“Free Your Mind,” Metro Times, March 12-18).
Not long ago, the American South was an evil dictatorship that looked more like a foreign country than part of the United States. Millions of people were told whom they could marry and how much education they could receive. They were tortured and murdered. Some people had the courage to stand up against this tyranny — one of them was Rosa Parks. What did she do to deserve ridicule by an Uncle Tom? A black man ridiculing those who risked their lives protesting inequality is like a Holocaust survivor making Oscar Schindler jokes. It would make more sense to ridicule the the Klan, but Uncle Toms who wish to make racists happy only ridicule African-Americans. —Demetrius Sherman, DetroitSend comments to firstname.lastname@example.org