Today’s news:

Simple politics of fear

To The Editor:

The only title worthy of Shavana Abruzzo’s recent column (Questions loom about Bam’s blood ties”) would have been “Guilt By Association On Steroids.”

She attacks Barack Obama’s so called ‘family ties’ as if he were responsible for anything anyone in his late father’s extended family does. It is this kind of simple mindedness that is so very symptomatic of the politics of fear. By taking her thinking to its logical conclusion, if I had a half-brother, who lived in the South and belonged to the KKK, I would be suspected of racism. If I had a German half-sister, who had been part of the Hitler youth, I would then be an anti-Semitic. One in a hundred Americans is in prison. I guess that makes us all criminals by association. Such nonsense.

Barack Obama was not raised by two Muslim fathers. His first father left the family when he was two. His mother left the second father and his grandparents raised him in rural Kansas. Why is this so hard for Ms. Abruzzo to accept?

Barack Obama is a Christian, and has been so his whole life. He went to a Christian school in Indonesia as a little boy and continued to be schooled in Christianity when he came back to the states. Even Mayor Bloomberg has asked people to stop the whisper campaign that Obama is a Muslim, and Ms. Abruzzo’s column goes against that request, albeit in a more roundabout way.

What was not in the column, however, was anything whatsoever about the important issues facing America today: Iraq, the economy, the oil crisis, health care. Instead she chose to give time and space to some half-brother of Obama’s in Kenya. It really was disgraceful.

One last comment. She also had the nerve to refer to Senator Obama as having “elite Americanism” – elite with John McCain being a millionaire and his wife not only possessing a hundred million dollar fortune but having charged, just last month, $750,000 on her American Express cards, please save us the “elite” label. It’s like when Karl Rove tried to paint Obama as elite and described him as “some guy at a country club with a drink in one hand.” Any country club you know of? This from the likes of multimillionaire, disingenuous Mr. Rove.

Sadly, Ms.Abruzzo’s column reveals some of the same erroneous, narrow minded and faulty thinking. It is just that sort of thinking that has made, and will continue to make, this current campaign shameful in its attacks on who Senator Obama has ever known instead of focusing on who he is, and how he can help this country. And after eight years of Republican rule, this country needs an awful lot of help.

Elaine Fazio-Mercado

Brooklyn

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