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Letter: Selective reality

In her address before the Senate on July 29, Sen. Kelly Ayotte described her visit to Sderot, Israel. I, too, have visited Sderot – three times. I wondered why many facts were missing from her account.

I spoke with a mother there who recognized Palestinians’ desperation to reclaim a way of life that she and other Israelis enjoy. While Sderot residents require bomb shelters, they also have access to food, water, electricity, sewerage treatment, government subsidies, health care, safe schools and other privileges that come from wealthy states.

This mother recognized that the people of Gaza do not have equal access to these rights because Israel controls all aspects of life for Palestinians in all of the occupied areas.

Too bad Ayotte didn’t speak to this mother rather than the one Israel hand-picked for her interview. The mother I talked with is white and chooses to live in Sderot in spite of the danger. She said, however, that Sderot is typically the place where Israel settles African immigrants, purposely exposing them to the danger.

She said Sderot is emblematic of Israel’s racism.

Did Ayotte investigate this feature of Sderot?

It is easy for politicians to only look for evidence to support their point of view, but isn’t their job to become knowledgeable about all aspects of a problem? Otherwise, how can they make informed, fair and moral decisions?

I would ask Ayotte to re-evaluate how she gathers information before making sweeping statements that only represent part of the reality.



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