1.7.09

Support WATA

WATA with the respectable scholars it has, has always defended Arabic and
 Islamic cultural issues. WATA has made out of this issue its raison d'√™tre. 
Let's all support it by disseminating this letter.
 
Sent: Tuesday, May 17, 2005 12:23 PM
Subject: Rejection of Your Explanation & Call on Immediate Response to our Demands,Webster
 
Tuesday, May 17, 2005
 

Rejection of Your Explanation & Call on Immediate Response to our Demands 

 

Dear Webster,

We, the members of the World Arab Translators'  Association, would like to express our rejection of the explanation you give in response to our letter of protest and consider it as no more than mere equivocation to exonerate your company and your staff from the charge of libel and defamation against the Arab people.  

 

We think you know as well as everybody else, that the word Arab "Upper case" or arab "lower case" refers to a member of the Arab nation of Arabian descent, as is the case with American, upper case or lower case. This distinction seems to exist only on the pages of your dictionaries.  You claim that "the job of the dictionary is to provide an unbiased and accurate report on the ways we use words today".  In fact, we want to make it clear to you that we checked the meaning of the word Arab in a number of dictionaries, but  we did not come across any of the derogatory meanings you offer in your dictionary.  Is that what you mean by "unbiased and accurate report" on the word?

 

The timid acquiescence you make in your reply that in the 4th New International edition of the dictionary the discrepancy about anti-Semitism will be eliminated IS INADEQUATE . Moreover, your confession that your Collegiate Thesaurus is in need of revision and your allusion to the fact that in the new edition the derogative senses of the word arab will not be included IS NOT ENOUGH 

 

The shy apology at the end of your letter for any unintended offence caused by these entries is not acceptable also.  We call on you to take  prompt and definitive action that reflects your claimed unbiased attitude.

 

Henceforward, we call on the Webster company to:  

1- Publicly repudiate these synonyms. 

2- Apologize to the Arab people for this unjustified provocation of hatred and hostility. 

3- Withdraw all copies that carry these offences from the market. 

4-  Send errata sheets to libraries, schools, academic institutions, etc. 

5- Send a letter of apology to WATA and publish a copy of it on the   company's own website.  

 

Our campaign against Webster Company and its publications in the Arab World will not cool down and will fervently continue until our demands, stated above, are met.  It will grow larger and stronger and will include all the Arab people.  It will also seek to reach the International Anti-Discriminations Committees and Civil Rights Organizations all over the world.  We will call on them to take action against the flagrant racist policy you adopt against the Arab nation. 

 

We strongly advise that you do not turn a deaf ear but respond to our demands. 

 

WATA

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