Sunday funnies: Iranian comic Maz Jobrani on the difference between Persians and Arabs
By Nicole Belle — April 14, 2007
I had dinner with an Iranian family last week and the discussion turned to how difficult it has been for them--all naturalized citizens--to travel and live in the US since the Bush Administration has used Iran to foment fear and hatred. The one son told me that he shaves right before going to the airport to travel so that he doesn't appear too swarthy to screeners. Another member of this family related to me that he was strip searched on both legs of a weekend trip to Vegas, since all he had was an overnight bag. It was really illuminating from their perspective and I think it's relevant to the larger discussions of prejudice and stereotypes preventing real dialogue that have played out in the media recently. I was truly angry on their behalf. Then, to my relief (and a little surprise), after dinner they played the Axis of Evil Comedy show on DVD, laughing their heads off. I guess you have to laugh to keep from crying.