October 22, 2011

Iraq, Iran, and Freedom of Speech

So we're going to pull our military completely out of Iraq (except for some embassy guards).  Supposedly by the end of this year.  

I'm not sure I'll believe it's done, even if "they" say it is.  

Has anybody noticed that over the past 30 years Iran and Iraq have taken turns being the bad guys?  I remember in the '80s Iraq was the bad guy, then we got over it and Iran became the bad guy.  It has flip-flopped like that and now Iraq is the bad guy again.  I used to care about things like that but I've flip-flopped over the years myself.  

I'll never forget something that happened when I cared.  In 1982 I was a freshman student at Memphis State University.  Iraq was the bad guy at the time, and Iraqi students were being persecuted to the point of assault.  There was a rally on the green one day; I stumbled upon it while hurrying to class.  The mob of around 100 kids was mostly young men; the girls were mostly hurrying by, just as I was.

What stopped me was the tirade being shouted through the amps.  It wasn't against Iraq, but against the Iraqi students.  Some of them had been heard bad-mouthing America for whatever we were doing to their homeland (that's why they were getting beat up).  The shouters believed Iraq deserved it, and that the Iraqi student deserved to be persecuted.  They were calling for the Iraqi students to be thrown off campus.  Not for being Iraqi but for expressing their opinions.

Well, stupid me.  I spoke up.  I yelled something to the effect that this is America and the Iraqi students have freedom of speech just like everybody else. 

Bad mistake.  Somebody threw a rock at me and it hit me right in the forehead.  A rock!  The mob turned towards me and I ran.  A professor happened to be right there when the rock hit me and he ran with me to the safety of a nearby building.  That rock shocked me to my core.  And I was in tears but I wasn't crying for myself.  I was crying over the ignorance - no, the idiocy - and the hypocrisy of the shouting mob.  These were my peers!  What would America become when these kids grew up?  

Well, now we know what America has become.  A nation of hypocritical idiots.  God help us all.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Lisa,
    I needed time to read your blog before I could comment. This article hit home with me. I am of middle east descent...Lebanese, pure bread. I was in college around 1979. The middle east was defintely looked down upon, changing from one middle east bad guy to another. When people saw me on campus, they had all of the guts in the world to grab me a threaten me.

    One incident I fondly recall is when a young man and his friend stopped me outside from entering into the college cafeteria. He grabbed the sterling silver necklace I was wearing and tried to lift me by the chain, hurting my neck. He shouted that I was wearing an Arabic coin on my chain and that I had no business in an American college. I told him to look at the necklace one more time. He saw that is was a holy medal with the face of the Catholic Pope and Mother Mary on the other side. Boy did he apologize in public for that one.

    Reactionary idiots, with no sense of what America stands for, or what it meant to his ancestors. My Grandparents left Lebanon to be part of the freedom enjoyed here and to participate in a democracy. America is a melting pot. But at times it is only for Americans that consider themselves the original country men.

    Keep writing, your, blog is interesting.