Letter to the Editor: Respect basic rights

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    Dear Editor,

    So the “Condemnation justified” writer of Feb. 26 thinks we are well justified in “forcing other nations to respect basic ideas of liberty and human rights”?

    Doesn’t this undermine the whole principle? If we believe, as humans, that we have inalienable rights, then we must allow citizens of other countries the same.

    Whether they use them “righteously” is not our call. We cannot “force” liberty on anyone! When we were born, we were not given agency on conditions.

    The writer also thinks it’s okay to label Iran as evil since it has allowed civil rights abuse and execution of its own citizens.

    OK, let’s close our eyes to the injustices in this country (i.e. the internment of 120,000 Japanese-Americans during World War II, and the abuse of African-American civil rights in this century), or in many other countries, and blindly point our fingers.

    Can’t we realize that a few groups with negative intentions do not an entire country make?

    We’re too smart to stereotype – I hope.

    The writer can’t believe it is a bad thing for Iran to “buy into American ideology.” Keep in mind that for many smaller countries, the overwhelming American presence throughout the world (in media, music, business, etc.) is intimidating.

    Maintaining a national identity becomes very difficult when another country’s influence is omnipresent, and no doubt this plays a factor in feelings of resentment toward the United States.

    I’m not condoning Iran’s actions or providing excuses for outrageous terrorist acts. I believe we can help solve the world’s problems, but not if we begin with name-calling and self-righteous attitudes.

    Aleesa Sutton

    Vancouver, B.C.

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