I don't usually comment publicly on other people's statements, but when I read a letter such as that written by John Hardin of Ettersburg ("Letters," June 26), I must say something.
The writer attempts to liken Jews of Humboldt County to marijuana growers to make some sort of metaphorical point. He writes about "the distinctive smell" of gefilte fish, and likens "visible mezuzahs and menorahs" to pot grows, of all things. But the clincher: "Would the county treat Jews as any other destructive, polluting and extracting industry?"
I did not read the rest of the letter, honestly, my hands were shaking and I was in shock. Any point Hardin was trying to make was lost. Jewish people have indeed been the subject of various ordinances, and have been rounded up and exterminated throughout history. Currently, France is in the midst of a huge resurgence of anti-Semitism.
There are still elderly people in this country with tattoo numbers on their arms, survivors of concentration camps. They came to this country seeking safety. There is huge PTSD in this community, and post-generational as well, with younger family members hearing the stories or being awoken at night by their parents or grandparents screaming in terror at vivid nightmares of torture.
To liken pot growers to Jewish people is offensive and ridiculous. If the point Hardin is trying to make is that pot growers are being treated like Jewish people throughout history, that is also offensive and ridiculous. Perhaps he is saying that pot growers are like Jews; greedy money grubbing resource extractors. Again, highly offensive.
I believe in free speech, but I do not believe in allowing a forum to give someone a voice to pander hate, hurt, bigotry and stereotypes. I am very disappointed this kind of attitude continues to exist.
Elizabeth Drabkin, McKinleyville