“Things that will get me disinherited in short order”

I posted the following link/letter to tumblr a few days ago, via Anjum and Preeti. You should be adding our tumblr feeds to your RSS reader of choice (because we are awesome, clearly), but, in case you neglect to do so, here is the awesomest email ever, in its rocking entirety, written by Karion. All my Rockstar Links & Things are posted over to tumblr these days, but I feel this deserves to be shared here, too – and totally merits a smashing HIGHFIVE.

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preetalina: And I say it as a simple American. :)

anjum: That email? Thank you. I say that as an American, & as a Muslim.

robot-heart: cvxn:karion:

Some context: my mother forwarded an email that had the “Obama is a secret Muslim, look at all his Mulsim friends, also a terrorist in his spare time” type of crap. I kind of lost my shit and sent the following – as a reply all (everyone in her address book).

Maybe this is difficult to see from your perspective. Let me give it to you from your kids.

This email is bullshit – all of the claims are demonstrably false and all are just a thinly veiled racist slur against Obama. Fifteen minutes of independent research will tell you that. The argument that “this is the other side” is downright pathetic, for if this is what ‘the other side’ has to offer, it is nothing more than racist, hateful, fear-mongering bullshit.

But from our family’s perspective, it is much worse that you are passing this shit around. You and Dad have lived in Muslim countries for almost all of your 30 years abroad. In that time, you have not been persecuted, harassed, harmed or otherwise molested for being American or being Christian. To the contrary, you have prospered. You have been able to worship in countries that DON’T have a free exercise of religion clause, and you have been able to do that without any harassment. Do you not realize that you have been a foreigner in these countries and been permitted to live as Americans do? With little regard to the local culture and customs and laws?

So when you pass along these utterly bullshit, racist, fear-mongering emails, you are kind of thumbing your nose at all of that and playing into the worst part of our country. You are spreading the “fear the Muslim” thing, even though Obama isn’t Muslim and even if he was, you both know better. You have lived it. You have lived with Muslims for nearly three decades. You haven’t been burned at the stake for being Christian. Dad hasn’t lost his job because of an infidel. Your house wasn’t burned down for Christmas lights. You have been privileged to live a Christian life in some of the most Muslim countries in the world and no one has harassed you for it.

Why on earth you cannot take your “Christian” message of tolerance and your 30 years of experience and not call bullshit on this type of political rumor is completely beyond me. It is, quite frankly, horrifying. How did your four kids learn this and you didn’t? How did we all learn to independently research and inform ourselves while our parents forward these junk, bullshit emails? How is it that we can all see this for the ignorance that it is, and yet our parents, who are supposed to know better, don’t?

Look, I can understand Dad’s support for McCain, given the Naval Academy thing, although I suspect if Dad actually read about McCain’s time at the Naval Academy, he would be pretty disgusted. I see no similarities between McCain and Dad whatsoever, and I am really proud of that. I doubt you’ll read this, as it is longer than a People think piece, but you should read this article in Rolling Stone. It is remarkably well-sourced, but it is also ten pages. That is longer than the attention span of most people who forward these kinds of emails:

Make-Believe Maverick: A closer look at the life and career of John McCain reveals a disturbing record of recklessness and dishonesty”

Mostly, I just wish the two of you would actually use some of your experiences over the past 30 years and speak up. I am not saying support Obama, but just think critically, and denounce the kind of bullshit that you are forwarding. Write an email denouncing Obama using objective facts if you are so inclined. But don’t be part of the ignorant class. Your kids expect so much more of you.

8 thoughts on ““Things that will get me disinherited in short order”

  1. This aspect of the campaign is the one I have taken most personally and that has hurt me the most. I’m glad that this e-mail was written because people should realize that those who don’t stand up against oppression are supporting it.

  2. Anu & Artistic Logic,
    i keep checking back to see if there’s a follow-up post, but there isn’t one so far! i’m all antsy to know how the mom (and everyone else on that ‘reply-to-all’ email) responded, too!

    HMan,
    as we have clarified in our gchat discussion this morning, you need to stop speed-reading like you’re on crack. i didn’t write this email!

    Faiqa,
    This aspect of the campaign is the one I have taken most personally and that has hurt me the most.

    i feel you on that. i’m rooting all the way for obama in this election, and yet i can’t deny that a part of me still finds it frustrating that, as a friend of mine pointed out the other day, “he’s not once said, ‘what if i were a muslim? what would be wrong with that, exactly?” and then to keep hearing about these bullshit (‘BULLSHIT’ is my new favorite word these days ;)) emails re. ‘oh em jee, obama is muslim!’ is highly annoying. it makes me happy that there are smart, sane people in the world who aren’t afraid to speak the truth and call out people on their bullshit. the end.

  3. peter,
    no! i am already married to that email, and we have a pre-nup agreement that frowns on extramarital affairs. just so you know. CEASE AND DESIST, or my lawyers will come find you in canada.

    ;)

  4. Absolutely awesome email. I hope her mother read it, as well as everyone else on that email thread. THIS is the sort of email that makes me proud to be an American (and a Muslim, of course).

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