To many Americans, it seems as though the Islamic world is our enemy; but the Islamic world is not our enemy. Ignorance is our enemy.There is profound ignorance on both sides between what we know to be true and what we choose to believe. In this post-9/11 world, damaging stereotypes and false generalizations swirl. Despite the fact that public polls indicate Americans' new willingness and interest in learning about Arab Muslims and their fabric of society, myths and misconceptions continue to abound.
Mary Coons began visiting the Kingdom of Bahrain in December 2005, and was immediately in awe of the Arab culture, religion, and people. With more than a dozen family stories behind her, it was natural that she would seek out people to better understand who they are and how they think. Culturally Speaking is the result of her drive to learn. With no preconceived notions of religion or politics, Ms. Coons presents the thoughts of Bahraini Arabs without injecting prejudices of her own.
In today's world where humanity continues to be persecuted in the name of religion, region, nationality and language, it is a commendable contribution to strive toward human harmony. Despite the significant differences in religion, politics and culture, America and Bahrain share the common desires of humanity; peace, respect, love of family, aspirations, and basic needs for sustenance. How wonderful if we could all extend an olive branch of harmony and respect, regardless of cultural and religious beliefs, when meeting and discussing one another's society.