The Iranian


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Sehaty Foreign Exchange


February 8, 2001

Freedom & responsibility

Freedom of any sort is not freedom if it fails to protect the rights and freedom of others. Freedom is prophylactic, in that it is protection against those who wish to take away our rights.

Some people think of freedom, let's say freedom of speech, as an open door permission to say whatever comes to their minds, without thinking and without taking responsibility for it ["Power of one"].

They say whatever they want under the disguise of Freedom. We hurt our fellow friends, loved ones, family, parents and our colleagues in the name of Freedom. They take away from people their dignity and self respect and worth in the name of Freedom. They humiliate others in the name of Freedom. They take advantage of our freedom in the name of Freedom. Now, let's reverse the scenario -- What if someone under the disguise of freedom took advantage of yours? This is NOT freedom.

This is lying to the people and taking advantage of them. Freedom comes with a measure of responsibility. We must act responsible when handed the beautiful gift and privilege of Freedom. In the past few days, various people have publicly and personally exercised their Freedom of Speech without acting responsible. They have said things that are untrue in the name of Freedom. They have humiliated members of an organization all in the name of Freedom.

They have destroyed our dignity and worth all in the name of Freedom. They have acted mature and yet have not yet learned to control their frustration. They are adults who have acted like children -- All in the name of Freedom.

Do not be shocked to know that these people have found followers of their kind. It is sad that people reach an age of assumed maturity in life, but never mature. They run around like renegades all in the name of Freedom. They destroy our writers and educators all in the name of Freedom. How are they any different?

Khodadad D. Sharif, Esq.
Attorney at Law

Disclaimer: Khodadad Sharif is the Executive Director of Persian Watch Cat (PWC). However this letter is his personal view and not necessarily reflective of any of his organizational affiliations. This is not the PWC's official reply to Guive Mirfendereski's "Power of one".


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