2001-10-27 / Letters

Thanks The Wave

Thanks The Wave

Dear Editor;

I want to thank The Wave for the front-page article, written by Howard Schwach in the October 6 issue, about the targeting of ethnic groups in the wake of the WTC attack.

Just as United States citizens and law enforcement agencies had begun to look candidly and constructively at the issue of racial profiling, admit its prevalence and to consider workable remedies, we were stunned by the tragic and criminal attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. 

That catastrophe let loose across the country a spate of acts of violence against innocent people simply because of their perceived physical resemblance to the planners and perpetrators of the attacks.

At the recent meeting of Rockaway Branch of Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, the attacks of September 11 and the urgency of non-violent responses were the subjects of serious reflection and
discussion. Divisive acts of racial prejudice were seen as abandonment
of fundamental ideals of our nation, and a capitulation to the goals of
the terrorists.

In the days following the attacks, the U.S. Department of Justice
condemned "violence and threats of violence against Arab-Americans and
other Americans of Middle Eastern and South Asian descent. Such violence and threats are in direct opposition to the principles and laws of the United States and will not be tolerated". (Attorney General John Ashcroft, Sept. l3). 

"We must not descend to the level of those who perpetrated Tuesday's violence by targeting individuals for threats or violence based on their race, religion, and national origin. To do so would be to grant terrorists a victory they cannot, and would not, otherwise achieve. We are a great nation; we must treat one another in a manner consistent with that greatness. Everything we do must reaffirm and respect the dignity, heroism and
sacrifice of those who have died, lest their sacrifice be in vain". (Assistant Attorney General Ralph F. Boyd, Jr., Sept. 13).

Here in the Rockaways we can do our part as a community to reject violence and to support and defend the principles of peace and justice.


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