Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Wal-Mart, a Muslim Woman's Veil, and a Really Rude Clerk

And CAIR (The Council on American-Islamic Relations). This time, I think that somewhat jumpy1 civil-rights outfit had a point.

CAIR says that a Muslim woman, wearing a face veil, went through a checkout counter at a Wal-Mart store in Riverdale, Utah, on February 2, 2008.

The cashier at that counter said: "Please don't stick me up," according to The Council on American-Islamic Relations, anyway.

They could be right. Wal-Mart seems to think so. Wal-Mart's regional general manager, Rolando Rodriquez, signed a letter of apology and sent it to CAIR on Monday of this week. The Nevada chapter of CAIR released the letter yesterday.

The clerk will be subjected to "sensitivity training," and CAIR seems to be satisfied.

So am I, although
  1. What I think about the matter doesn't make a whit of practical difference.
  2. "Sensitivity training" is something of a hot-button phrase for me
The "sensitivity training" I know about is the eighties-style indoctrination in politically correct attitudes toward men and other undesirable types, but it may have changed in the last twenty years.

Although I've stood behind enough cash registers to know how unsettling a customer covered face can be, you don't treat a customer like that.

Not more than once, in my day. A stunt like that would have gotten me fired. On the spot, if the manager had been within earshot. If I was very lucky, I might have been re-assigned to the stockroom.

There's no reasonable doubt that some Muslims have decided that Allah is telling them to kill infidels (or "kafir," to be more 'multicultural').

That doesn't mean that everyone who wears clothing that doesn't match the dress code we've been used to is a thug, or a terrorist. Some may be weirdos, but that's an entirely different topic.

People from Somalia have been moving to central Minnesota lately: mostly in St. Cloud, for now. It's only a matter of time until Sauk Centre, the town I live in, has Somali families living here. When that happens, I'm hoping that we'll get another couple shelves of specialty foods in the grocery.

There's a near-certainty that someone will do something insulting here. There are jerks everywhere.

My hope is that people who are on the brink of jerkishness will get a grip, and accept that not everyone is just like them.

Related posts, on tolerance, bigotry, racism, and hatred.
1 "Hypersensitive" might be a more accurate term. CAIR hasn't been in the news lately, though, so they may have reviewed their policy, which seemed to be that any arrest, or perceive insult, of a Muslim - or Muslimah, for that matter - was a hate crime.

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Note! Although I believe that these websites and blogs are useful resources for understanding the War on Terror, I do not necessarily agree with their opinions. 1 1 Given a recent misunderstanding of the phrase "useful resources," a clarification: I do not limit my reading to resources which support my views, or even to those which appear to be accurate. Reading opinions contrary to what I believed has been very useful at times: sometimes verifying my previous assumptions, sometimes encouraging me to change them.

Even resources which, in my opinion, are simply inaccurate are sometimes useful: these can give valuable insights into why some people or groups believe what they do.

In short, It is my opinion that some of the resources in this blogroll are neither accurate, nor unbiased. I do, however, believe that they are useful in understanding the War on Terror, the many versions of Islam, terrorism, and related topics.