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In this very emotional week I had 2 experiences today that I will always remember.
First,  I work Thursdays on the Navajo reservation.  Driving through, I saw several "roadside memorials" of US flags raised surrounded by bouquets of flowers on the ground.  I saw many Navajos wearing shirts with the US flag.  These people, who have suffered many injustices at the hands of our government, none the less are proud to be Americans and stand for our country.  I was deeply touched, and embarrassed that this should surprise me.
Second, I occassionally have the pleasure of working with a gentle Iraqi-American.  I was surprised when I arrived at work to find him there, since I had been thinking of him and his family on the drive in, although I see him infrequently
Initially, we both just looked at eachother.  We don't know eachother well, and I think neither knew what to say or expect.  I asked about his friends and family, and offered him any help I could give if he found himself in need.  He was sincerely thankful, and I thought about what it would be like to wonder if casual friends and associates would prove to be enemies in situations like this.  I truly worry for he and his family (and the countless others int he same situation), it frightens me how many people I hear expressing blind hatred for Arab people as a whole. 
He explained to me how he had left Iraq because of fanatacism, and found a haven in the US.  He said that the people who are responsible for this horrible terrorism would love to see Arabs who had become Americans be persecuted here, he believes that is one of their goals.  And he worries because if its not safe for he and other arabs in the US, there is no safe place for him, or for anyone, really.  This man is as patriotic to America as anyone I have met.
We underestimate the love of this country that many people who we think are different from us have.  If we follow hatred, no one is safe, no one wins.  And if we persecute innocent people just becuase they are of Arab origin, the terrorists win.
Kathy Kelly

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