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A Kurd Tells Brenda Walker To Stay Out Of His Community
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August 17, 2007, 05:00 AM
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From Pary Karadaghi (e-mail him)

Re: Brenda Walker`s Column: What The New York Times Didn`t Tell You About Nashville`s Kurdish Gangs—And The Patriotic Backlash

I read Walker`s article on Kurdish refugees with dismay. Walker takes a very negative slant on immigrants.

It`s a disappointment that Kurdish young men are members of a gang with criminal ties.

But that doesn`t reflect either on all immigrants in general nor the Kurds specifically.  I don`t know if Walker`s anti-immigrant rhetoric fools anyone. 

For over thirty years, Kurdish refugees who fled gross human rights violations have made Nashville and other communities their new home.  

The majority of Kurdish immigrants are law-abiding citizens and contributing members of society. 

A backlash from 9/11 generated "anti-Muslim" and "anti-immigrant" sentiment like those Walker expressed, which has pushed these youths into gang and criminal activities. 

Their actions are inexcusable and they should be brought to justice and serve their punishments.

But for Walker to take advantage of this unfortunate situation by expressing her anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim bias is equally pathetic and deplorable. 

Tell Walker to stay away from our community. We have enough enemies as it is.

Karadaghi is president and Chief Executive Officer of the Kurdish Human Rights Watch, Inc. headquartered in Fairfax, VA. Its website is here.

Brenda Walker replies:

Immigration creates the perfect Petri dish for gang formation. Young immigrants, or children of immigrants, facing the normal identity issues of growing up find they are neither wholly American nor of the parents` culture. So they gravitate to others like themselves.

Gangs result. Sadly, young immigrants often acquire the worst of American culture: acquisitiveness, materialism and hip-hop that is debased with violence and sexism.

Too many young immigrants don`t understand the wisdom of America`s Founding Fathers that great freedom requires great individual responsibility.

As a refugee, you may believe that America should be the sanctuary for the world. On a planet of over six billion, such a thing is simply not possible, even if it were desirable.

Like all other peoples, Americans have the right to maintain their own culture.

Most Americans do not want to be multicultural. If a limited number of immigrants want enter the country, they must assimilate patriotically.

But most people on this troubled planet will have to sort out their problems at home. Not everyone, I`m sorry to say, can be rescued.