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"Tradition?? The only good traditions are food traditions. The rest are repressive."

"There are two ways to think. The first is to trust to your ancestors, your religious leaders, or your charismatic professors. The second is to question, to challenge, to explore history for meanings, and to analyze issues. This latter is called Critical Thinking, and it is this that is the mission of my web site. "

Dr. Laina Farhat-Holzman  

November 2015

The Mystery of the UC Merced "Slasher"

Letter to Editor:

Why has there been such reluctance to note that the student who stabbed four people at UC Merced might be a lone wolf terrorist?

First, his name was withheld, contrary to other comparable killers. Could it be that we would know that "Faisal Mohammad" was Muslim?

Next, the FBI and local police hastened to assert that there was no indication of terrorism or religious motivation, even though their investigation was not completed. How co more...


Letter to Editor: Withholding Criminal's Name

Santa Cruz Sentinel
October 7, 2015

The well-intentioned desire to deprive a mass killer of notoriety by not using his name is a bad idea. This makes it impossible for the public to understand the criminal's motives, history, and ideology, leaving the public unable to address these important issues.

Sweden and the UK, for example, deliberately hide the name of a perpetrator lest the public learn that the criminal is a Muslim immigrant. This lea more...


October 2011

FBI's Terrorism Procedures Defended

San Francisco Chronicle
October 24, 2011

I cannot believe the ACLU has veered so far off rationality in their attack on the FBI's Counterterrorism procedures. One must follow the numbers when dealing with potential terrorists who want to inflict maximum carnage on our civilian population. Where else should the FBI look?

Their training has them watch young men who have changed their behavior, have pulled away from their families, have become obs more...


October 2010

Is Turkey "Mildly Islmist?"

As much as I admire The Economist, I am continually annoyed by their insistance that Turkey's ruling party and president are "mildly Islamist." I have sent the following letter to them:


Why do you insist on promoting the notion that there is something "mildly Islamist" about Mr. Erdogan in Turkey?  Yes, his Islamic credentials are clear.  But even you note that his democratic ones are less clear. "He once called democracy a train from which to disembark more...