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October 2012
Letters from Readers All religions preach love

I applaud Sonny Singh for his article, titled “We Are All Muslims,” in the September issue. It seems like tolerance is vanishing from this planet we call Earth. Every religion teaches we should love other beings. Whether it was Moses, Jesus, Krishna, Guru Nanak, the Buddha or Mohammed, they all taught respect for others. Love For All and Hatred For None is the motto of the Ahmaddiya Muslim Community to which I belong.

Khola
online comment

 

Tell us how Democrats are friends of Indian-Americans

Your editorial in the September issue came out bashing the Republican Party. Though it was meant to show why the GOP is bad for Americans, it failed to show why the Democrats supposedly have Indian-American interests at heart.

I believe in less government, less taxes, quality education for my children, family values, pro-business regulations, faith in God and religion. I also believe in legal immigration, and not illegal immigration. I’m confident many of my fellow Indian-Americans also believe in the same values, which are also the GOP’s core principles.

The reality today is that Americans are more polarized than ever with about 45 percent each on both sides, leaving only 10 percent of the electorate as independents or as people whose ideologies are based on changing priorities in their lives. Both the GOP and the Democrats have polarized American voters by adopting extreme right and left ideologies.

In the upcoming Presidential election, I would like to urge the Indian-American community to focus on what each party offers in terms of improving our nation’s woeful economy, instead of otherwise focusing on any one social agenda. We should be looking at which party can create more jobs to reduce the current unemployment rate of 8.3 percent. We should make our choice based on which party can bring us back from the doldrums of current economic conditions and make us, once again, a giant world power.

Editorials of this nature promote the myth that Democrats are friends of Indian-Americans and that Republicans are our enemies. A magazine’s editorials can go a long way in leading and influencing our community by shaping its stand on the politics of this country. They should do so with an understanding of the weight that each word carries, instead of replacing the truth with common biases and misperceptions.

Narender G. Reddy
Duluth, Georgia

 

Indian-Americans won’t fall for the GOP’s tricks

Regarding your editorial in the September issue, I have always wondered how some Indian-Americans associate themselves with the Rush Limbaugh-loving, immigrant-hating, Tea Party-hugging and outrightly racist Republican Party! Is it because the Republican Party throws some dog-bones to a few Indian-Americans that raise money for them and then appoints them to some government agencies? Are we all supposed to feel happy and love the Republican Party for these little rewards? I don’t think most Indian-Americans are stupid enough to fall for such tricks.

We often hear the examples of Nikki Haley and Bobby Jindal in arguments that Indian-Americans are doing well in the Republican Party. That is sheer nonsense. Most of the people that voted for Nikki Haley in South Carolina never knew that she is of Indian descent! They voted for her in the belief that she is a Caucasian, because she looks and acts like one. In any case, I don’t care whether or not Barack Obama becomes our next President, but I am voting for him on November 6.

Sam Raj
Marietta, Georgia

 

Anti-GOP editorial was biased and unfair

Your screeching criticism that the Republicans are not looking out for the economic and political interests of Indian-Americans and other minorities is scathingly biased.

We didn’t know that the Democrats have stood up for blacks, women’s rights, gays, lesbians, and Latinos. Now we do!

While Fox News is a mouthpiece of the Republican Party, the partisan news coming out of CNN, NBC, MSNBC and ABC makes me conclude that they all are definitely biased mouthpieces of the Democrat Party. After watching all these news networks as a foreign journalist, I can say without doubt that they all spout Leftist diatribes. No “fair and balanced” reporting there.

The Tea Party has come under your scrutiny for the second time for being home to racist and anti-immigrant fringes. But the Democrat fringe movement is no better—the Occupy Wall Street protestors were streets, committing acts of violence and destroying public property. Recently, the multimillionaire hip-hop mogul, Jay-Z, said, “What is OWS all about? …This is free enterprise. This is what America is built on.” I am sure many Indian-Americans can relate to him. They all fled India because their beloved home country offered them no business incentives to thrive and prosper. India’s socialist, draconian, and corrupt government policies made it difficult for anyone to become rich. America’s capitalist and free enterprise system turned them into wealthy entrepreneurs.

At Tea Party rallies, I have not seen a single act of violence or racist remarks despite allegations to the contrary from the liberal media. The Tea Party is accused of being “anti-intellectual …and [not] accept[ing] the legitimacy of scholars and intellectual authorities.” Would anybody in their right mind not oppose this kind of research where these stem cells come from aborted fetuses and the destruction of human embryos?

Didn’t the DNC 2012 exclude “God” from their party platform and were hissed and booed when they voted “God” back in? How is that being swallowed by your Hindu readers?

“Multiculturalism” is a liberal code word for the destruction of patriotism. Liberals want Western societies to be “diverse.” They want segregation and not integration. They encourage Latinos not to speak English nor pledge their allegiance to the American Constitution.

The Tea Party does oppose illegal immigrants and we all should. We have laws and they must be upheld and enforced. As a legal resident, I was appalled at how illegals were treated with kid gloves. Tax-paying Americans pay billions of dollars toward illegals’ food stamps, medical costs and for their children’s education. Consequently, many states are financially in the red.

Democrats want you to believe that you must be dependent on the Government. If you become personally responsible and work hard to become financially independent, Democrats fear you will vote for the GOP.

So where are Khabar’s fair and balanced commentaries? Where are your Conservative commentators?

Umah Papachan
by email

 

Learn from both parties

I have seen your biased, liberal columns over the years, so your editorial in the September edition of Khabar does not surprise me. As an independent voter, however, I have to disagree.

The Tea Party is not against minorities, multiculturalism, or pro-immigrant policies. Its focus is on fiscal conservatism. Is it against illegal immigration? Yes, of course. A person with common sense should oppose illegal immigration, which is hurting our economy, borders, and future. Perhaps you should ask yourself if you are a passive supporter of illegal immigration? Otherwise, you would not oppose Arizona’s and Georgia’s immigration laws. These are designed to drive away the illegal immigrants by enforcing simple, common sense laws. If cops were to abuse the system, there are already a hundred different ways to do so.

You have quoted a report by the NAACP on fringe elements in the Tea Party. The NAACP has lost credibility long ago and has become a race-baiting group, so please don’t insult our intelligence. Your selective citing of op-eds by David Brooks also shows your blatant bias against the Republican Party. I’m sure I can find a few reports by Liberals on anti-intellectualism myself, but I’m not naive enough to think so or repeat it.

In general, Republicans have great ideas on liberty (except religious), capitalism, and less government. Democrats tend to do justice to religious freedom and women’s rights. We should learn from both parties, but you seem to miss the boat almost every time.

Vijay M.
by email

 

Widening economic disparity can have serious consequences

The cover story (“The Big Gulf”) in the September issue by Nikhil Lakhanpal was an eye-opening article that threw light on the growing social disparity in the Gulf countries.

When I landed in the U.S. 42 years ago, I was fascinated by America’s beautiful buildings, wonderful highways and fast-moving society. But one issue that distressed me was how even worship was segregated. I was aghast to see black churches and white churches.

On the few occasions I visited the Gulf countries, I observed with distress people from the Indian subcontinent working outdoors in extreme heat. I have seen similarly pathetic conditions in the slums of Delhi, where poor people work hard to support families left behind at home.

Where will these widening social imbalances lead us? Our self-centered march to wealth, with the survival of the fittest becoming the social norm, has led us to a place where extreme economic polarization is sure to bring other serious problems.

A. S. Mathew
by email

 

Don’t worry—you won’t need a lot when you retire

What is a “reasonable” retirement savings rate (Moneywise, August issue)? Let us simplify something that looks so scary. Please remember that retirement and its cost is culture-specific.

First, why do you need 80 percent of your last salary in retirement? I like to assume (as all financial planners assume many things) that when you retire your house is paid off. Second, you are likely to be living with just your spouse, so your food costs will certainly be low. Third, your entertainment spending will have come down, too. Similarly, you will be buying fewer clothes. The only big expense in retirement will be your health care costs. But Medicare can help with a big chunk of it. For other medical expenses you will need some kind of insurance, and the author of the Moneywise column can help you find something not very expensive. So, do not get scared. You will not need a lot of money to survive retirement. Instead of calculating how much you will need in your retirement years, just find out (a) how much social security you will receive at your full retirement age, and (b) other monthly income from your 401K plans or annuity you might have, and then figure out how to live happily on that amount.

Ashwin Vyas
Lawrenceville, Georgia

 

Muslims Condemn Violent Reaction to Anti-Muslim Film

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community of USA strongly condemns the senseless acts of violence against the U.S. diplomatic offices in Egypt and Libya as well as the murder of the U.S. Ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, and other U.S. diplomats. The killing of any innocent person is completely wrong, and no religious or moral teachings anywhere in the world can sanction such killings. We fully support the ongoing U.S. diplomatic efforts around the world and call on all people of conscience to wholly condemn such barbaric and unjustifiable attacks against those working towards peace.

“On the basis of Islamic teachings, Ahmadi Muslims have always been against all forms of terrorism and extremism,” said Amjad Mahmood Khan, National Director of Public Affairs for Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, USA. “We stand in solidarity with the U.S. State Department in their efforts to establish just and peaceful relations between nations.”

Shoaib Ahmad
Norcross, Georgia

 

The greatest challenge to secular democracy in India comes from the elite

This is in reference to your interview with Harsh Mander (August issue). The selective response and reaction of such elite people in the form of either extreme reaction to some episodes or extreme ignorance to other situations is what undermines secularism.

He talks about “equal respect for every faith and belief system.” Why should this equality be granted only for minority rights and not for the rights of Hindus? Then the writer talks about his achievement as part of the National Advisory Council, in making the Communal Violence Bill. This bill would make public authorities responsible when communal violence breaks out. It would be interesting to see how “communal” and “violence” are defined in this bill.

On the question of Afzal, he believes there is not enough evidence. These are the same people for whom a direct telecast of Kasab shooting people with a gun is not strong enough proof!

In conclusion, let me say that the biggest challenges to secular democracy in India are the elite—educated scholars, biased politicians and people like Harsh Mander who like to keep their definitions and responses selective.

Indu D.
by email

 

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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. 3790 Holcomb Bridge Rd. Suite 101, Norcross, GA 30092.


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

 


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