Thursday, February 12, 2009

I'm a Liberal

Today a self-proclaimed "left-wing" Lebanese Australian claimed that I am right wing. I am not right wing. I'm quite liberal, actually. I'm pro choice, secular, on occasion I drink beer and wine, I've inhaled, and I've voted for the Democratic candidate in every US Presidential election since I started voting. In college I was Vice President of the Arab Students Club, and I pretty much single handedly brought Paul Findley to speak at our campus. We also brought Jack Shaheen to speak on campus. I debated the pro-Israel students a few times. I don't know how many hundreds of hours I spent on the Yahoo message boards telling people about the history of Israeli terrorism and how the Palestinians have been screwed.

To call me "right wing" is ridiculous. I'm a liberal who loathes terrorism. I'm a liberal who was born in Iraq and hates Saddamists and the sectarian Wahhabi cultists who've caused so much death and destruction in Iraq. There are many of us.

I'm a liberal who sympathizes with Israeli victims of terrorism, and maybe this sympathy has been enhanced by the incredible terrorism in Iraq in the last five years. Maybe I became less "pro-Palestinian" after I saw so many Palestinians on the blogosphere supporting Saddam, and after I learned about the Gazans who supported Zarqawi. I'm sure in both cases it was a minority of Palestinians. I still support Palestine's right to a contiguous independent state. I still believe that Palestinians who were expelled from their homes must be compensated and given the choice to return to their homes. I'm still a liberal.

I'm a liberal who is angered by the Jordanian judicial system, which gives light sentences to men who commit honor killings.

I'm a liberal who was horrified by 9/11 and is embarrassed by Arabs who believe it was an "inside job".

I believe strongly that girls and women should not be forced to wear hijab. I voted for Obama. I support gay rights and gay people's right to marriage. I believe all nations must work together to combat global warming, and I think America should take the lead.

I'm not right wing. I'm not left wing either. I'm a liberal.

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