On Friday, almost 5 days after numerous media reports came out describing how Iranian-Americans were discriminated by Apple, PAAIA issued this “public statement” where it asked “Does Apple Discriminate Against Iranian Americans?” In that statement, PAAIA made the following comments:
– “As is our policy, PAAIA refrained from making any public statements until we investigated certain facts regarding the incident.”
– “[W]e believe that Apple did not engage in a deliberate act of
discrimination, the application of the policy, the incident was
interpreted as discriminatory by the customer and, thereupon, by the
general public and media.”
Now, today, PAAIA comes out with a statement on this website where it states “Today, [PAAIA] received a statement from M. Khurram Baig, the attorney for Ms. Sahar Sabet, that contrary to other reports, an incident of discrimination did take place at the Apple Store in Georgia on June 14, 2012. Given this new information, PAAIA strongly and unequivocally calls on Apple to take immediate steps to cease any instances where members of the Iranian American public are inappropriately targeted for discrimination based on their language or national heritage.”
Dear PAAIA, people aren’t stupid. First, you claim you investigated the issue and determined there was no discrimation. Well, clearly you didn’t investigate the issue because you didn’t speak to the Iranian-American who got discriminated and whose lawyer probably called you up, angrily, to tell you that you were wrong. Second, you just pulled a 180. AT LEAST ACKNOWLEDGE THAT YOUR PRIOR STATEMENT WAS WRONG! Had you had acknowledged that you were wrong, this author wouldn’t have to do so. Third, for godsake, acknowledge the efforts of other organizations by name. NIAC has been issuing letters and informing people about this from Day 1. You did nothing for 5 days, got it completely wrong, and then (without apologizing) finally admit there was discrimination: something every news organization and Iranian-American has been yelling about for the past week.
I’ve been saying this for weeks now on this website. PAAIA is completely ineffective. We need to hold these organizations accountable for their failures. We demand more.