Stop discrimination against the Arabs in America
Msgr. Labib Kobti
Pastor of St. Thomas More Catholic Church in San Francisco
We the Arab-American Christians have felt discriminated many times in the past and present by our Christian brothers in America and namely by the Christian Evangelicals and Zionists.
If we, as Christians, are that mistreated then, we wonder, what are they doing to our brothers and sisters, the Arab-American Muslims?
We, Arab-Christians are proud to be the descendants of the first Christians, Acts 3:11. Our Fathers were the ones who started to preach first there and then all over the world. They were the first martyrs; they were the first translators of the Bible; they were the first anchorites, the first members of religious orders and congregations in the Palestinian, Egyptian and Syrian and Iraqi deserts, the first Fathers of the Church …We are proud to say that we were Christians before any other American of any different country or ethnicity or origin.
We, Arab-Christians have suffered greatly to keep our Christian faith in these our countries of the Middle East where we remained the little flock of Christ in a world that changed to Islam. We worked hard to maintain a balance between our faith and the newcomers, the Muslims, with whom we tried to live in peace and harmony, with ups and downs that made our numbers fewer because of many unfortunate circumstances.
We, Arab-Christians have been considered many times traitors because of our faith that collided with the faith of the people who came, under different pretexts, to colonize our home countries. Because of that same faith our brothers were disseminated, our churches were burned, our bishops, priests, and people killed as it happens today in Iraq . History is repeating itself. Considered strangers in our beloved countries of the Middle East , we were then obliged to emigrate.
When we Arab-Christians came to the USA , people forgot that we were brother Christians; instead they looked on us only as Arabs, I mean people of lesser God. We were forced to join our beloved Arab-Muslims in their fate of being frequently discriminated against, misunderstood, bigoted, killed, and hated.
We have succeeded to show that we Arabs are good people, good citizens, loyal to USA and its Constitution, and many of our people became famous in different sectors of American life: politics, science, economics, education, artistic, sports …
Still, our brothers, many Christians of the US, in their support of Israel and misunderstanding of the situation, abuse us, mistreat us, hate us, and gossip against our Christian faith, and they mistreat our brothers, the Arab-Muslims, urging Congress and the Senate to create laws that could not be interpreted as anything less than racism against our culture and our people.
This must stop and must stop forever. We deserve better. We are not less American than any American in this country.