Claims of Being Unsafe Misplaced

Editor:

The writer of Thursday’s article, “”University Must Protect Students from Racism,”” (March 12) writes that the Muir College Council, through Anti-Zionism Week, has made the Jewish community “”feel unsafe on campus.””

Unsafe. Really. Does the writer really know what it is to feel unsafe? Being unsafe is having to go to sleep every night surrounded by sandbags, the pop-pop-popping of rubber bullets — an insane lullaby. Unsafety is fearing your death lurks around every corner dressed as an Israeli soldier, an Israeli tank, an Israeli gunship: death, hovering in the sky.

That is feeling unsafe. Yet the writer writes that she feels unsafe and that this too is feeling unsafe. It is not a feeling of unsafety of person, but a moral and ideological feeling of being unsafe. It is a feeling created by education, evidence and facts that attack the belief that modern Israel is the fulfillment of a noble ideal, that it is a civilized oasis in a barbaric, empty desert.

This feeling of being unsafe, this questioning of the validity of having a homeland for one people at the expense of another, is and remains the goal of Anti-Zionism Week. Zionism is the political-historical movement that created the modern nation of Israel and has subsequently led to the raping of the honor and dignity of the Palestinian people, of mothers and fathers, sons and daughters.

— Taha Gaya
Muir Junior

Editor,

I am writing to correct a few of the inaccuracies in the letter from Lucas Simmons (“”Letters to the Editor,”” March 8). Simmons lays the blame for the current energy crisis in California on Gov. Gray Davis. Actually, energy deregulation legislation was passed in 1996 under the administration of Republican poster boy Pete Wilson, and the crisis has been caused by energy price manipulation by George W. Bush’s friends in big oil.

It is also interesting that Simmons can claim that energy deregulation in Texas has been a success, when it is not due to be implemented in that state until Jan. 1, 2002.

As to the idea of separation of church and state, in Jefferson’s 1802 letter to the Danbury Baptist Association, he argued that the Constitution created a “”wall of separation between church and state.””

Although the exact phrase “”separation of church and state”” does not appear in the Constitution, this was Jefferson’s interpretation of the First Amendment: “”Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.”” I am sure that Simmons’ interpretation is much more in tune with the intentions of the framers of the Constitution than Jefferson’s, but I mention Jefferson’s opinion here merely as interesting historical trivia.

Maybe we have underestimated President Bush’s credentials. As Simmons points out, Bush did attend Harvard and Yale. Rarely is the question asked: Was our president learning at Harvard and Yale? Did he truly earn his “”gentleman’s C,”” or did he rely on Daddy’s influence to get him through while he staggered from one frat party to another in a booze and coke haze?

The truth is that Dubya has been able to hide his incompetence by using his family’s money and his father’s influence.

— Brett Beitzel

Graduate Student

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