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Published: Saturday, 12/2/2006

Treatment of imams was unjustified

Mona Charen's Nov. 28 column about the removal of six imams from a US Airways flight is not just flippant rhetoric; it is devoid of basic facts.

Praying five times a day is obligatory in Islam. These prayers are combined into three prayers during travel. They remain obligatory and will be the first item we'll have to account for on the Day of Judgment.

Ms. Charen objects to one of the men saying "Allah, Allah" repeatedly. The Qur'an enjoins us "to celebrate the praises of Allah and do this often" (Ahzab 33:41). It is called "dhikr" in Arabic or a mantra in Hinduism. Possibly she is unaware that when people pray together the leader prays out loud, and a very large part of the ritual prayer has the word "Allah" in it.

She justifies all the suspicion because they had a discussion in Arabic criticizing the war in Iraq and American foreign policy. If political discussion is to be censored, then it would be very instructive for Ms. Charen to watch the movie V for Vendetta. With her kind of cheerleading, America could become a police state.

What is shocking (and not mentioned by her) is that the imams were removed in handcuffs and placed in separate cells for questioning, some in the presence of police dogs. And all six were released.

In an irrational panic the civil rights of six innocent men were violated. This is our everyday life and the beginning of the trek to Guantanamo Bay, where hundreds of Muslim men are imprisoned without charges or legal recourse, suffering humiliation and torture. A large number of them are innocent.

The treatment of the imams by US Airways and the incarcerations in Guantanamo Bay are the worst discrimination and entirely unjustified under the Constitution.

mahjabeen islam

Maumee

Nice to see our three darling Democrats, Teresa Fedor, Edna Brown, and Peter Ujvagi, want to keep us in their nanny state by voting no on the concealed-carry pre-emption bill. They just showed us that they do not trust law-abiding citizens.

Jim Szych

Bennett Road

The Blade's Nov. 14 editorial, "Another Israeli 'mistake'•" was well stated. There is no hope in the Middle East (more correctly southwestern Asia) as long as the United States is so totally supportive of Israel financially, militarily, and verbally. It was shameful that the United States vetoed a resolution against Israel's latest killing of civilians. Many Palestinians have been killed in recent months.

For an administration so concerned about democracy in that region, it is hypocritical to not recognize a democratically elected government in Palestine. Perhaps if they were recognized and respected, they would reciprocate by valuing and working with other nations.

CARA ULRICH

Archbold

If a new arena is to be built in Toledo it should be paid for by private funds; the city and county should not be involved. If the people who are so set on the project feel it is a money-making deal, they should form a private corporation and sell stock to pay for it. Let those who would benefit the most finance the project.

There should be no new taxes to pay for the arena. These taxes will drive business and visitors away from Toledo. One big reason many businesses will not come to Toledo is the tax structure.

FRED J. KRUMM

Hannaford Drive

East Toledo was instrumental in passing the vote for a sports arena on the East Side. Why bother with votes that don't count (note the rejection of an East Side arena location and SeaGate Centre)?

Our city fathers don't care much about anyone's agenda but their own.

Let's have more park space and open land for public use. After all, we are expected to come up with the necessary millions.

CHRIS KOHN

Oregon

I commend The Blade staff for its persistence in printing quality journalism, including the malfeasance within and around the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation.

Having been injured in the long-term, the BWC and the full court press it plays against injured workers has become painfully apparent. I have a comp claim in Ohio, where I was hurt. Medical providers here in Michigan have refused time and again to treat me because the reputation of the bureau for paying late, if at all, precedes it.

In a scheme to shift costs to claimants and/or other insurance they may have, paperwork requirements have become much more extreme than any other insurer. Medical office billing staff and physicians state that, without exception, Ohio workers' compensation is the single most difficult system to work with. After two doctors ceased treatment because of non-payment issues, I have only recently been fortunate to find a physician to treat me for some, but not all, of my injuries and am continuing to seek adequate treatment; this after already having contacted dozens. It is absurd that there is no one willing to treat in my area, which is more than adequately populated with medical practices.

It is this and many other bureau practices that seek to withhold medical treatment and benefits that are intended to make injured workers whole and employable.

To have Tom Noe pass around money intended for these purposes like so much candy to his political buddies (who are lined up with interests that seek to minimize compensation) is an insult to every worker in the state.

Fundamental change at the policy level is the next step, and will not be long in coming.

Gregory Switala

Clio, Mich.

We've all heard those in denial parrot the statement our troops are "fighting the war for our freedom." The fact is we haven't fought a war for freedom since 1776. War is simply a confirmation of failure, primarily in foreign policy.

The bottom line when it comes to war is if you kill enough people, they will kill you back. You can't disarm one group of people and let another group massacre them as we did in Kosovo and Lebanon.

You can't slam missiles into people's homes and factories to take the spotlight off your turning an intern into a humidor, and you can't kill thousands of people with idiotic embargoes without getting a response; 9/11 was a response.

It was not an attack, but a trap. We jumped into that trap with both feet and now we want out. The question is how?

Bringing Jim Baker in to play patty-cake with Iran and Syria will only make matters worse. The best solution came from Milton Friedman, who said privatize the oil. Instead of letting our hated puppet government in Iraq control the oil, make every Shiite, Sunni, and Kurd over 21 a stockholder. Then, inform them they either stop their wacky religious gang-banging and start pumping oil or self-destruct. And by the way, we're leaving Friday.

To prevent future wars we must repeal presidential order 12333, which prevents us from surgically taking out foreign politicians by means of a missile from a silent drone. This would also put our politicians in the cross-hairs. Now ask yourself, would you rather lose a Bush or a Clinton or your son or daughter? The choice becomes crystal clear.

Jim Boehm

Drummond Road

Beyond any particulars or outcomes of the caged kids trial now in process, I hope someone is investigating who allowed a couple to adopt 11 special-needs children. Almost anyone could predict that the requirements, stresses, and strains of such a family life would be unhealthy, if not impossible, for all.

Nancy Segan

Westwood Avenue



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