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Letters from Readers

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December 2020
Letters from Readers

A highly charged general election

More Americans embraced the message to listen to the scientists versus President Trump’s refusal to do so, and voted for Joe Biden amidst the pandemic that is infecting more than 100,000 every day. As the world expressed visible relief, the Indian government immediately reminisced about the strong Indo-U.S. relations during the Biden-Obama administration and hoped they would now be stronger after four years of U.S. isolationism under Trump.

Trump’s 15-point lead among white voters prompted the election pundits to dissect what did and did not work for the Democratic Party in this election. Moderates in the Democrats blame messaging around Black Lives Matter and Green New Deal for the losses in the House and Senate. Progressive rising star Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, however, re- futes it saying the party has lost “core competencies” of effective campaigning.

The general election of 2020 was somewhat of a repeat experience of 2016. Hillary and Biden are seasoned politicians who had detailed plans and policies. Trump mocked them for their services in Washington and fought as an unsophisticated outsider who did not have a plan for many issues. He energized his rallies with the conservative talking points in a comic manner. His actions—for example, tax breaks for the wealthy causing high fiscal deficits, nepotism in hiring unqualified campaign donors to run the government, and legal battle to take away Obamacare—are far from conservative. This is not the first time a U.S. election was an ideological battle between educated urban and rural values. Are thoughts of climate change, equality, gun control, anti-abortion, and immigrant rights more bothersome than benefits from a bigger stimulus, saving of Obamacare, higher taxes on the rich, or controlling Covid-19?

As the demographics shift to more urban youth, minority/immigrant voters, older rural Americans feel more and more threatened and pivot further right in politics, caring more for traditional ideologies. Covid-19 should have been a landslide referendum on the incumbent president’s failure. Instead, he tried to package it to his benefit by branding himself as the anti-mask, anti-lockdown hero. Longtime immigrants such as Cubans in Florida were bothered more by the fear of socialism than the rampant virus. The newer immigrants in Arizona and Nevada were not so forgiving as they witnessed atrocities at the Southern border.

Now, Joe Biden wants to be the healer. Although checks and balances in power are good for democracy, the last thing the American public want is a non- cooperating Senate such as the one that constantly blocked President Obama. Wall Street, deciding to “put their money where the mouth is,” celebrated the prospect of a divided government a day after the election. The upcoming runoff election in Georgia for two Senate seats can tip that balance to give Democrats a majority, making it easier to implement major changes. In any case, Joe Biden is a good human being, and I am optimistic that America and the world will soon be on a path to healing.

Sowmitra Ghosh
Duluth, GA

 


Kudos for interview with Khyati Joshi

Really enjoyed the interview with Dr. Khyati Joshi by Pooja Garg (“Being Brown and Hindu,” November issue)! A very important validation and insight!

I came to Atlanta in 1981 as the first pediatric pulmonologist in the State of Georgia (the city was then filled with over forty white allergists). My path was littered with challenges because of my being a brown female bringing in a new pediatric specialty in the then Scottish Rite Children’s Hospital. I was the first Indian physician on their staff.

The discrimination was at times subtle but mostly blatant. I was advised not to be in Forsyth county by myself, especially in the evening hours. I couldn’t change my personal or professional background. So I focused on things I could change. My son was in an Episcopal Christian School. In fifth grade he was ridiculed by students and the teacher for not knowing a Bible related point. The basic teaching—“Treat others the way you want to be treated”—was not followed by the teacher and his classmates. I had to meet with the Headmaster to discuss, and I ended up giving them a copy of the Bhagavad Gita to get familiar with our religion.

Upon noticing that the Jewish community observed their religious holidays and all the major medical meetings were arranged around their calendar, I decided not to work during Diwali and Ganesh Chaturthi. Even as I struggled to explain what these festivals meant, to my chagrin my Indian friends were not comfortable with my thinking. I thought I had processed these feelings, but they came up when I read your article.

Varada
by email


What’s on YOUR mind?

We welcome original, unpublished letters from our readers. You could either respond to a specific article in Khabar or write about issues relevant to our community. Letters may be edited for length and other considerations. Longer submissions by readers may be considered for the “My Turn” column.

Email: letters@khabar.com • Fax: (770) 234-6115.

Mail: Khabar, Inc. 3635 Savannah Place Dr, Suite 400, Duluth, GA 30096.


Note: Views expressed in the Letters section do not necessarily represent those of the publication.

 


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