Writing is hard for me. Expressing anything is potentially (usually) problematic. Expressing something requires thinking and I’m not good at that. Or maybe it’s just that I can’t make up my mind and come to a clear conclusion. Should I oppose Bush more than Ahmadinejad or the other way around? Should I condemn human rights violations when Iran is under immense international pressure? Would that undermine Iran’s right to nuclear technology for peaceful purposes — including enrichment? Shish… man cheh midoonam!
If I’m going to say something in public I better make sure I have something half-intelligent to say. But that may be the biggest problem. Every time I want to write something I remind myself that for too many years, I was a Khomeini supporter. It’s almost as bad as being a Bush supporter, but not quite :o)))
In fact, I may have to mention my years as a young, dumb supporter of the Islamic Republic every time I publish something — just to make sure nobody takes me seriously. I want readers to say, Sheesh… what does this Hezbollahi ass-kisser have to say? And it makes me feel even better knowing that another segment of readers think that I’m a neo-con or Shahi or British, Israeli or American spy. (Personally I would prefer to be a Dutch spy. I love everything about Holland.)
So I’m thoroughly aware of my lack of qualification to express anything half-intelligent in half-decent English. (Have I crushed myself enough? The self-punishment never stops :o)… Hey boys and girls: If you get involved in a political or religious cause, do not surrender yourself completely to anyone, any group or any idea. Keep an open mind. No leader, government or religion is perfect. There’s never ever ever ever any justification for defending, accepting or ignoring violence against a human being for political or religious reasons at any time, EVEN IN A TIME OF WAR. If you do, you will turn into me. You don’t want to have a guilty-conscience for the rest of your life, do you?)
(The ground has been shaking for minutes in my Albany, California, apartment across San Francisco Bay. Is it another earthquake? I have felt at least five in as many months, including one just last Tuesday. I bet we’re going to be hit with a giant earthquake soon. They say big quakes happen after a series of smaller ones. They said so on the Discovery channel the other night. But now I realize that the shaking is not from the ground, rather it’s my knees rattling as a result of the two caffeine pills I took to stay awake to finish this blog. Such dedication!)
I started this blog to ask this: Have you noticed we have no respect for our opponents? We don’t recognize the legitimacy of their existence only because they have a different opinion than mine and yours. Just look at the way we tear our best and brightest to pieces. It’s an epidemic. Ideological opponents dismiss rivals in absolutist terms.
I sense the venom in attacks against a wide range of distinguished Iranians such as Abbas Milani, Nasser Zarafshan, Hamid Dabashi, Azar Naficy, Shirin Ebadi, Mehrangiz Kar, Shahrnush Parsipur, Ebrahim Nabavi, Hossein Derakhshan, Mehdi Khalaji, even Anooshe Ansari — and it drives me crazy when this much energy is put into destroying them with vicious, sweeping stabs. Don’t you see the anger in your voice and the hate in your heart? Chetooneh?
Have you ever considered that maybe Reza Pahlavi and Abdolkarim Soroush are very different but equally legitimate? Or the Mojahedin, Tudeh, Fadaian, Nehzat Azadi, Jebhe Melli… It’s the same story with political groups, only worse. They can’t even shake hands, compromise or form simple alliances.
We must have a particular gene that tells us our fellow Iranian opponents are entirely wrong, vile, stupid, ugly and treacherous, which “proves” they are indeed beasts, unworthy of basic respect and life. We are unable to separate the basic integrity of every person from their particular politics or religion.
Am I talking nonsense?
The bottom line is I hate fights.