Talking about “Qat” the other day in class, I was kind of surprised of how famous Yemenis have became of using it, and I just want to add a little bit more on the subject. As you know, Qat is widely grown and used in Yemen by almost everybody, it is the big phenomenon Yemen is known for in the Arabic peninsula, even the neighboring countries of Yemen is not ever familiar with using Qat, except the Yemenis who live there. The repetitive usage of the substance can become very addictive, which is why Yemenis are not even missing one single day of using, some can’t even start the day and function without it. The wide spread of Qat has mingled and became a big part of the culture, knowing the fact that it can be harmful to the body, I might say it has been accepted in society as a national treasure. Back home, I have seen a lot of Yemenis who were there for work and they do not go any where without Qat in their pockets, and I wondered how did they manage to get it in the country because its prohibited as it is an addictive and is considered a drug, so I found out that they can get it but for a lot of money counting in the smuggling expenses, what a hardship!. It is somewhat similar in Arabia, with the hookah places that are so common and popular, but there is little to no consideration to the protocols of the health department, where kids that are under the age of 18 can still go in with out an inspection of age. The way hookah is very common, made such a situation be taken as lightly and seen as normal, but if everybody was doing it, that does not necessarily make it alright.
Edward Said is from an Arabic descent living in America or to generalize -the west-, his way of looking at things is similar to a lot of people in the middle east. Said was simply stating what actions he saw out of the American public and what has been said about middle easterners, and for that was portrayed as an anti-Americanism? then it means that if you are not with us in every step of the way then you must be against us, what an absurd concept.
Orientalism began way back in history, made for the purpose to form a detailed idea about a certain nation, their habits and norms and how would they deal with different kinds of situations, for orientalists to return with a full inside look back to their country that wanted to concur that nation. We can see a similar process happening again in our time and age, but this time is different, where its purpose is aimed to figure out how we may take the most advantage of their natural resources, which means that acquiring knowledge is highly motivated. Or did you think that all the studies about the middle east is to express the admiration of other cultures, or for the love of exploring other civilizations that colors this beautiful world? really?
Hollywood’s portrait of Arabs is always wrong, that for the big part of it is really racist, not talking about Aladdin by the way, whatever Hollywood brings to the screen it will always be offensive, not because I’am already predisposed to thinking so but because its truly inappropriate. Hollywood will always be Hollywood, where blame can lead us to nowhere and no ears would ever listen. On the other hand, the news was suspicious of everyone who looked Arabic and have generalized the description to the middle-eastern public, unfortunately the American public has followed, forming certain images in their mind when they see an Arab or hear about one. In addition, the news is following statements and actions of the government, for example, you do not see reports on U.S. networks that shows the horribles of Palestinian massacres on the hands of Israelis soldiers, more and more day after day living the nightmares of their homes being destructed and losing sense of their Palestinian identities as well as their dear land, but on the contrary, you see the groups who are trying to defend their land are the ones who are called terrorists, all because the U.S. government have a certain affiliation with the Israeli government.
What Said has brought up regarding how Arabs are generalized with a certain adjective, is just a small dot in a sea, there are many areas in life that could be touched on and explained more to clarify the time being situation, the past and what could be a solution in the future