Dear John McCain, Sarah Palin, the RNC, Charlie Black, the corrosive spirit of Lee Atwater, Rove-ian politics, Sean Hannity, Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, Elizabeth Hasselbeck, Joe the Plumber and other respected members of your respected ilk:
Please stop. Just stop. Enough. No more. Is this how you really want to go out? Do you want the following hate filled gems to be the final symbol of your failed campaign? Is this how you want to be remembered?
According to you, Obama is now a cowardly, pseudo-Muslimy, Iran-first traitor who is more loyal to the “radical Muslim world” than to his own country.
Really? That’s fascinating considering most of the Muslim world has the intelligence and common sense to recognize Obama’s Arabic name neither makes him Muslim nor Arab. And as a Muslim, I should know. We Muslims are like the Borg – we can identify one of our own through innate, radical “Muslim-y” powers. But that’s our little secret. Don’t tell anyone.
Next up, apparently you all believe Obama is a pro-Palestinian extremist who does not support Israel and instead “pals” around with “radical” Palestinian-American academic Rashid Khalidi, a respected Columbia faculty member and scholar whose Palestinian background and “radical” notions that Palestinians might be suffering labels him an extremist. Last April, it was revealed that Obama and Khalidi were friendly acquaintances during their time in Chicago, and Obama even made a respectful toast in praise of Khalidi at the latter’s farewell dinner (Khalidi subsequently left to assume his position with Columbia University).
So, judging from your logic, both Obama and Khalidi are radicals, with Obama automatically absorbing, accepting and endorsing all of Khalidi’s ideologies and beliefs purely by virtue of his social relations with the Palestinian professor.
If indeed Obama’s social “palling around with Khalidi” makes him an anti-Israel, anti-American radical extremist, then McCain surely emerges as the 72 year-old hybrid incarnate of Hezbollah, Hamas and Al Qaeda. After all, as chairman of the International Republican Institute, McCain personally oversaw and approved the funding of Khalidi’s non-militant and academic Center for Palestine Research and Studies organization to a tune of $448,873. I mean, that is the natural correlation, correct?
Obama might have had dinners with Khalidi, but unlike McCain, at least he didn’t fund the man with 6 figures.
If these associations and analogies hold logical water, then McCain supporters should demand why their candidate – whose slogan by the way is “Country First”- not only “pals” around with pro-Palestinian rights advocates, but also funds them! (This is of course a logical question only if one assumes that speaking for Palestinian rights and against human rights abuses in Gaza and West Bank automatically makes one unpatriotic and somehow un-American.)
I mean, even moose-hunting, God-fearing, Plain Jane Sarah Palin said, “This is important because [Obama’s] associate, Rashid Khalidi… in addition to being a political ally of Barack Obama, he’s a former spokesperson for the Palestinian Liberation Organization.”
Even though this claim is an outright, vacuous lie, which lacks all notions of credibility, perhaps we should ask why McCain, as chairman, helped fund the spokesperson for Yasser Arafat’s organization? Inquiring, moose-hunting patriots demand to know!
In an April 2008 Los Angeles Times article, at least Khalidi distanced himself from Obama when it was revealed that he “strongly disagrees with Obama’s current views on Israel, and often disagreed with him during their talks over the years.”
For the uninitiated or for those running as the Republican Vice Presidential candidate, that means Khalidi and Obama “strongly” disagree on Israel.
However, I have yet to hear such a stinging disagreement between Professor Khalidi and John McCain over this same issue. Surely, McCain’s silence means consent and agreement with Khalidi’s opinions, beliefs, writings and declarations. After all, the Senator did fund this “radical” organization. Aha! The red herring, the bloody glove, the smoking gun, Keyser Soze!
Dear rabid hate mongers, do you see how ridiculous you sound?
There is less than week left in these historic elections. Who knows who will win? Whatever the result, please be assured that somehow life will continue. Yes, the Earth will rotate around its axis. Starbucks will still overprice their mediocre coffee and compete against itself by opening the same, exact branch across the street. Angelina Jolie will yet again adopt another child and officially become her own United Nations. Britney Spears will inevitably do something crazy. And, a Republican senator will resign over corruption or a sex scandal or both.
However, you will have to live with yourself, your actions and your well-earned legacy of promoting and stroking prejudice, fear and hysteria in an already tenuous and volatile global climate.
And to quote King James, “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”
Associate editor Wajahat Ali is a Pakistani Muslim American who is neither a terrorist nor a saint. He is a playwright, essayist, humorist, and Attorney at Law, whose work, “The Domestic Crusaders” is the first major play about Muslim Americans living in a post 9-11 America. His blog is at http://goatmilk.wordpress.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org