Letters to the Editor: Understanding Racism, It’s Not About the Turkey, Another Michael Wong Responds

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Understanding Racism
No self-respecting minority should be vying for the hand of those white men in Momma’s Boy (Reality Check, Dec. 26). I am sure the mothers of the white women in the show would not want their daughters to date the Iraqi mother’s son, who is not white in their eyes. It is also not surprising that an Arab woman would want to be white. In the 1900s, Lebanese and Syrian immigrant women tried to prove their “whiteness” in Louisiana by attending parties where they beat up or lynched blacks. One can understand, but not tolerate, the Iraqi mother’s racism. Her son, a hockey player, may not be hired as a coach without a white wife — as long as his prospective employers do not find out he is half-Arab.

George Chell
Arlington, Va., Dec. 26

It’s Not About the Turkey
These students reinforce the fact that not everyone does Thanksgiving like it is done on TV or the magazines (In the Classroom, Dec. 5). Every family has its own twist on the American Thanksgiving tradition. When I was young, my family had roast beef and chicken, along with rice and peas and carrots. We only had a turkey once. It is not what you eat that matters, but being together and being thankful that counts.

Linda L. Rho
Philadelphia, Pa., Dec. 26

Another Michael Wong Responds
Watching the film Milk, it was clear how intense the discrimination against the LGBT community has been (“Milk’s Man: Kelvin Yu Plays Milk’s Campaign Staffer Michael Wong in New Biopic,” Nov. 28). They are a community of heroes.

Michael Wong, with whom I share the same name, thank you for your courage in coming out and speaking out. Despite harassment, discrimination, physical attacks and even murder, the LGBT community has responded with compassion, reason and dialogue.

When I see to this day how some people, including Asians, vehemently oppose even the basic right for LGBTs to marry, I feel ashamed. Their rights are everyone’s rights.

Michael Wong
San Francisco, Calif., Dec. 23

Clarification: In a Dec. 26 article about the federal Asian American Pacific Islander Serving Institution program, the total cost to attend the University of Maryland is $20,872, which includes tuition, fees and living expenses (off campus, without family). The $8,994 figure includes only tuition and fees.

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