Letters to the Editor 1/30

Club sports not worth newspaper coverage

To the upset club-sports fan: if USF were a high school then yes, there should be articles on club sports. But get real, this is a big university.

No one wants to read an article about how the women’s rugby team has to step it up this year, why the water polo team lost last night’s match or who’s injured on the thumb-wrestling roster. To The Oracle staff: I can’t believe you thought that person’s letter was news worthy. Save your ink, your time and your readers.

Jon Mishner is a junior majoring in mass communications.

Al-Arian issue should be ended soon

There is a disease that keeps rearing its ugly head here at USF — it’s called stupidity. For a senior majoring in pre-law, James Davidson lacks common sense. However, in his Tuesday letter to the editor, Davidson manages to make one valid point, which is Genshaft should make a decision soon on the Sami Al-Arian issue. Where Davidson’s argument takes a detour into absurdity is his moral equivocation of the two sides (Genshaft and Al-Arian).

Davidson whines that he is “disgusted with seeing Al-Arian’s sob story being played out on the front page of The Oracle,” while also grumbling at Genshaft’s indecision. If it were up to Al-Arian, he would be back in the classroom doing what he loves: teaching.

It is the USF administration and the corporate thugs of the Board of Trustees that are prolonging this case to no apparent end. The truth of the matter is Genshaft — led by the vitriolic BOT chairman Dick Beard who essentially holds the puppet strings — jumped the gun and made a decision to suspend Al-Arian with the hopes of exploiting public grief and hysteria over the events that occurred Sept. 11. Alas, they were disappointed, perhaps even mortified, when they discovered that most USF students and faculty, as well as academic groups across the country, could see right through them.

Unfortunately for Genshaft, the Al-Arian issue will not disappear. In fact, it will set the precedent for other cases of academic freedom for a long time to come.

Sarah Mitwalli is a freshman majoring in political science.

Immigrants should adapt to culture

After hearing that the state of Florida changed its opinion and let a Muslim woman have her picture on her driver’s license with her face covered, this was an editorial written by an American citizen, published in a Tampa newspaper. Immigrants, not Americans, must adapt.

I am tired of this nation worrying about whether we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, we have experienced a surge in patriotism by the majority of Americans. However, the dust from the attacks had barely settled when the “politically correct” crowd began complaining about the possibility of our patriotism offending others.

I am not against immigration, and I do not hold a grudge against anyone who is seeking a better life by coming to America. Our population is almost entirely made up of the descendants of immigrants. However, there are a few things that those who have recently come to our country, and apparently some born here, need to understand. This idea of America being a multicultural community has served only to dilute our sovereignty and national identity.

As Americans, we have our own culture, our own society, our own language and our own lifestyle. This culture has been developed over centuries of struggles, trials and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom. We speak English, not Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian or any other language. Therefore, if you wish to become part of our society, learn the language.

“In God We Trust” is our national motto. This is not some right wing, Christian political slogan. We adopted this motto because Christian men and women founded this nation, and it is clearly documented. It is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture.

If stars and stripes offend you, or you don’t like Uncle Sam, then you should seriously consider moving to another part of this planet. We are happy with our culture and have no desire to change. We really don’t care how you did things where you came from. This is our country, land and lifestyle. Our First Amendment gives every citizen the right to express his opinion and we will allow you every opportunity to do so. But once you are done complaining, whining and griping about our flag, pledge, national motto or way of life, I highly encourage you to take advantage of one other great American freedom –the right to leave.

Brenda Martens is a program assistant in the school of library and information science.

Saddam must be removed from power

Iraq does not immediately threaten the United States. Iraq is not poised to invade Saudi Arabia or Kuwait again. Saddam Hussein is not flaunting his weapons in front of us. This is a time game. Iraq is biding its time until the world grows weary of watching this on the news and forgets what he is doing so Iraq can build their weapons in peace. Then Iraq will strike quickly and decisively against any enemy. Kuwait, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey, the list goes on. These are all enemies of Iraq because Iraq has made them enemies, and Saddam has proven that he will use whatever force necessary to achieve his aims of dominance.

As a history major, I see this problem time and time again in my studies. The world needs to wake up and realize that appeasement and ignorance are not the answers to this problem, as France and China are suggesting. Saddam must be removed from power while we can do it, because if we wait until we have to remove him, it will be far too late. Why let him strike again? Shame on America if we let this killer off the hook again, and may God have mercy on the people he targets next.

Mike Pettengill is a freshman majoring in history.