Letters to the Editor

Islamo-Fascism promotes hatred, not education

So apparently David Horowitz has declared this week “Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week.” This does not bother me though, because I can declare this week “Sam Berry Appreciation Week,” and no one has to listen to me. But the scary thing is, people have actually listened to David Horowitz. College campuses across the country have actually agreed that hosting a week like this would be healthy and productive.

What’s my beef with the week? It is singling out one religion for a crime that has probably been committed by people and countries of most, if not all, major religions.

Do I think this makes fascism okay? No, fascism is fascism, and no matter which religion you want to claim is responsible for it, it is not acceptable. The average American probably does not even fully understand what fascism is, but knows that it is wrong. And when you add a religion that most Americans do not know enough about, it gets even more confusing.

So what the average American gains from the week is not an awareness of “Islamo-Fascism” but a reinforced notion of what the media and their peers already lead them to believe: that Islam and Muslims are to be feared. How is that message healthy for any college campus or for the country as a whole? So here’s my beef with Northwestern: Why are we just accepting this? Why were there so few people wearing green as a protest Wednesday, and why were those who were wearing green mostly Muslim? Do we non-Muslims think that just because we personally are not being attacked that it should not matter?

I especially call upon my fellow Jews and ask why we have not done much to stop one of us (Horowitz) from promoting a week of hate, since we of all people should be able to commiserate with Muslims during this incident. To the entire NU community, I hope you all take the time to read “First they came…” by Pastor Martin Niemoller. Because though Muslims may not be in the process of being dragged off to camps, their religion is being dragged through the mud by the supporters of “Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week,” and we should not allow this.

– Sam BerryCommunication sophomore

Accusations of misquotes misleading in guest column

Greg Jue claims I quoted him saying words he didn’t (“Untying bias at NU and in Jena,” Wednesday guest column). He writes in his third sentence, “Did I say what he claims I did? No.” But he writes in his opening sentence that I took these same words “out of context.” Hmm. If he didn’t say them, why would he also say I took them out of context? His two-week-old rebuttal contradicted itself within the first three sentences.

The two quotes in question express his belief that the Jena Six beating was justified and that they should not have been charged. There were never any shades of meaning to be misread in these statements. Further, he spends the rest of the article confirming many positions I critiqued in my original article. I forewarned his temperament was a bit excessive; he quickly made allegations of white supremacy. I thought house arrest is a very moderate punishment; he confirms he wants to “free” them from this. I used a few of Dr. King’s words to highlight the difference between suffering unjust punishments and avoiding them; he thinks I want to destroy the ethnic studies department.

To his credit, he may come across more strangely than he is because he’s lost in the idea of “freeing them.” I think he means to say that because the Jena Six’s original punishment was excessive, they should now be pardoned of future sentencing. This is a tenable position. Sadly he can’t say this without mentioning that all other possible sentences are attempting to “enforce a white supremacist status quo.”

Mr. Jue, if you choose to make accusations, at least have your story straight.

– Nathaniel ZebrowskiWeinberg juniorThe Northwestern Chronicle editor in chief