I have some very mixed feelings about a letter recently written to the U-B.
First off, I have tried to figure out exactly what the point of the letter was. Did Craig Buchanan want to inform the world that Muslims work for TSA? That is great. We have people on the front line who really care about our travel safety.
Did Mr. Buchanan want to let us know we have exchange students attending Wa-Hi who are Muslim? That is also great. It shows acceptance and understanding.
Did Mr. Buchanan want to let us know that he is accepting to all religions? I sure hope so. One thing everyone needs to learn is to have an understanding of differences of culture. Everyone needs to learn to have peace in their hearts. Everyone needs to have a heart full of goodwill.
In 1947 a group of volunteer ambulance drivers from World War I and World War II initiated student exchange programs to provide an avenue for peace, goodwill and cultural understanding.
This organization is American Field Service (AFS). In 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower initiated a sister city program to promote peace, cultural understanding and goodwill so we would not have to endure the waste of war. Walla Walla and Sasayama, Japan, have been sister cities for over 40 years. Long before either of the above two programs, Black Elk of the Ogalla Sioux proclaimed there would never be peace until there was peace in the hearts of mankind.
In the United States of America we are made up of a citizenry of every country in the world. We are made up of every religion of the world. We are made up of every ethnic background in the world. Within the United States of America most of us have learned to live in peace, attempt to understand the cultural differences, volunteer and promote goodwill.
Mr. Buchanan’s expressions are not right, not wrong, but different.
Hopefully Mr. Buchanan can learn to respect the rights of others, appreciate their differences and learn as well as understand the cultural differences.
Chairman, Walla Walla-Sasayama Sister City Committee