Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Naming confusion

Maybe I’m the wrong person to point this out but whenever we try to read about Muslims who are suspected of some wrongdoing, and are provided with background and contacts of the suspects, we – the readers – cannot follow closely because their names are so different, hard to read, pronounce and therefore distinguish. This is not a stance against one’s culture, but an observation.

Consider the latest trial of Sámi Al Arian. The bastard mass murderer of Jews. The trial lasted for several months, and whenever the public tried looking into the trial details, we were overwhelmed with an incapability to follow on relationships between suspects. Once again, not to bring any “racist” argument to the table, but just to state: Too many “new” and “unique” names cause minds to drift away and lose focus of the horrendous facts.

I’m a frequent reader of Front Page Magazine. There are many articles there that provide great detail on how and who is involved with what. Many other sources try to let Americans know what is going on and are providing us with names and locations which are phonetically mimicking a completely different language and set of pronunciations. To many, “it all sounds like Chinese”; “Chinese” in the sense of it being unreadable, therefore being unable to focus on the timeline presented in the articles.

Here is a solution, not necessarily practical, possibly silly: First state at the beginning of the article that names of real individuals are replaced to allow easy reading and point readers to the bottom of the article for the real references. Or perhaps mention the names once when first encountered, but add something like “Jallal Bin Hamid, whom we shall address as Mr.X”. Then replace foreign names with neutral local names. Order the new names by the Alpha-Bet. For example, replace Abdullah Shalah, Said Abu Tier, Daud Hamid Jamil, with “Andy AS.”, “Bart SAT.”, and “Carl DHJ.”. I bet CAIR would indorse this solution, since it would divert the negativity of the report from the Muslims for which the report is about.

No matter what the solution is, keep it brief and easy to remember and understand. I will contrast my observation here with the way main stream news agencies report today.

Discredited world news agencies such as AP and Routers routinely omit any identifying information from perpetrators. This includes ethnic identity. A true and clear example would direct you to the reporting on the recent “suburban” French Riots. In my opinion this is not to be brief or to assist easy reading, but rather a way to whitewash terrorists. For example, instead of saying “Muhammad and Nidal, Arab Palestinian members of Hamas, a well established self proclaimed Terror group blew them selves up in a crowd of innocent Jewish civilians of Russian descent at a Disco.” They would report “X amount of people died in an ongoing middle east violence incident. Umm Jihad, mother of one of the victims praised her son as a hero and complained the Israeli Occupying army prevented her from visiting her sons place of death”. Or report: “Oppressed minority members participated in a violent action in response to the suffering the Israeli occupation has imposed on them”. This laughable way of reporting, despite the fact that the example is bogus, is the norm among the main stream news agencies.

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