Monday, September 16, 2002

Possible Terrorists in Lackawanna

I woke up Saturday morning at my parent's house in Rochester, shuffled downstairs, and was met by my dad saying, "Hey, Lackawanna made the news!" The news of suspected terrorists being arrested in Lackawanna surprised us since this is the city my dad grew up in and the place where my grandmother still lives. Ninety-nine-point-nine percent of the Yemeni population in Buffalo live in that city (according to the Democrat & Chronicle). While I don't believe all Yemenis are terrorists (same goes for any ethnic group), I wonder if the high concentration of Yemenis and proximity to the Canadian border made for the almost-perfect spot for those Yemeni-Americans arrested to seem unobtrusive. Think about it: if you were a terrorist and wanted to go unnoticed, wouldn't the best thing to do is blend in with your surroundings by being around people like you? If the six men arrested lived smack dab in the middle of white-bread America, I'm sure they would have been noticed or even watched more carefully than where they live now. Most people don't think of themselves as racist, but drop something out of the ordinary (read different) into a neighborhood of one kind (white, black, disabled, etc.) and people notice. They talk. They may even make your life difficult because they are afraid to confront the fact that they are uncomfortable with people who are different from them. What are your thoughts?

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