The Iranian


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Sehaty Foreign Exchange


December 4, 2000

Have you an ounce of "sharm"?

You letter ["Married a Black man?!!"] to the about Maryam Ovissi and Daryl Pendleton caused my do-rageh blood to boil [Maryam and Daryl].

You disgrace yourself by claiming to speak for anyone but your own racist self. I for one, have known the incredible courage and sensitivity it takes to engage in an inter-racial relationship --- and to face the scrutiny, derision, and close-minded prejudice of not just White people, but worse yet, Iranians who managed to adopt the racism of this country, coupled with unfortunately, a superiority of their so-called, and let me add, ill-understood term "Aryan" race.

Iranians themselves ought to know better since they have faced their own experience of discrimination, stereotyping, and racism (as a result of the political events of the past two decades).

Racism should be challenged regardless of who speaks it and from where it originates. You obviously don't know anything about Maryam or Daryl and the contributions they have made and the struggles they have faced. And you obviously don't value the courage and dignity of those who have challenged and overcome the racism of this country and culture(s) to make beautiful and lasting relationships that provide models for human dignity, respect and love for all of "us."

I dare say, if you don't know Maryam and Daryl, you shouldn't make such empty comments. More importantly, however, you ought to keep your bigotry to yourself and if you have an ounce of "sharm" you would interrogate your own prejudice and educate yourself.

Persis Karim


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