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Magical mystery man
Thank you! You are not hypocritical or condescending

By Assal Badrkhani
December 20, 2001
The Iranian

Holding the remote control in one hand and a warm glass of chai and honey in the other, I began my afternoon ritual of Persian channel flipping. I would watch American television, but there was never anything worthwhile on at four o'clock.

I would pick up the San Francisco Chronicle, but I'm one of those few teenagers who knows that all the media does is put a pretty little spin on the lies our leaders feed us. In what other country in the world would you find the world news section in the very very back next to some lawn furniture advertisements? Only in America...

And so, I kept switching channels, wishing I'd dropped an ice cube in my tea to cool it down a bit. And then I saw him, or maybe I heard him first. Anyways, it was love at first sound. I'll refrain from using names because I in no way want to make anyone mad or anything, but I do want everyone to know about an unexpected gem that I came across a few weeks ago.

For the first time in my life, I saw someone in the magical world of Iranian television who spoke perfect English, no accent. I thought that he was probably someone there to run "Ahang haayeh darkhaasti", the only show on TV geared towards teenagers. But no. This man wasn't there to spring another load of mindless music videos with bee-aaberoo dancers on us. This man had a brain... and a very educated one I would like to add.

He spoke of Erik Erickson's theories about the stages of life, and the story of Imam Ali, and the hazards of drugs and sex. Never in my life had I been so proud of someone I didn't even know. I wanted to call in and tell him know how wonderful he was, but I couldn't, because I am totally against those people who call in and ramble on, kissing * and wasting valuable time that could otherwise be spent by saying someting of value.

So, I am here to say: Thank you! You know who you are. You should also know that you are the first person I have ever seen on Iranian TV who can prove to the entire Iranian community that their teenagers are not as "lost" a generation as we have been labeled. You speak perfect English and almost perfect Farsi.

You are not hypocritical or condescending in your tone, you just say it like it is, straight from the heart. You talk of how we should love ourselves and our country and how we should strive to educate the people of America about what we are about. You say you hope for the day when American athletes and celebrities can raise their heads proudly and tell the press that they are Iranians, and my heart soars because I too can see that day approaching, slowly yet surely.

Most of all, the words that steal my heart are "If you're not part of the solution, then you're a part of the problem." I hope you realize how great an effect your words have on the future leaders and workers and singers and students and lovers of Iran and I hope you never stop to rest on that path you are taking. I wish you the best and I hope that everyone who watches your program appreciates the purpose of your show the way I have begun to do so.

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