x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 17 January 2018

It's language, but not as we know it

A Star Trek fans notes the lack of demand for Klingon lessons in the UAE. Other letter topics: Emiratisation and education, a Chinese ban on fasting and the US prison system.

A reader notes that Klingon fans, like John Stephan of Las Vegas, are relatively rare in the UAE. Robyn Beck / AFP
A reader notes that Klingon fans, like John Stephan of Las Vegas, are relatively rare in the UAE. Robyn Beck / AFP

Regarding Violence threat after China bans Muslims from fasting during Ramadan (August 2), what happened to religious tolerance?

These people are just not eating from dawn to sunset - how should that affect the officials' lives?

They are still going to work and doing everything the same while they are fasting.

Why would you force a person to eat when they do not want to eat?

Why don't the party leaders instead send food gifts to Somalia to help those who are in dire need, rather than give it to those who don't want it?

Yusrah Meeah, Dubai

Blast brings back bad memories

It was sad to read Series of blasts rock city centre (August 2), and it made me think back to the 2010 attack on the Germany bakery in Pune, when 17 people were killed.

Whether this attack is due to terrorism is not yet proven, but the fact that the explosions took place on a busy road is important.

At least, only one person was injured.

It is painful to think that, despite the earlier incident, there has been no increase in safety measures from the government.

K Ragavan, India

Education the key to Emiratisation

In reference to New labour laws threaten heavy fines (August 2), I am completely in favour of Emiratisation.

The challenge is to balance the desire to Emiratise public institutions and private industry and the need to run these organisations at world-level standards.

Currently there is great debate about the effectiveness of the UAE education system to prepare students (primarily young men) for college and university entrance requirements, let alone graduation and taking their place in the public service or competition-driven private sectors.

Mandating Emiratisation without the new employees having the prerequisite knowledge, attitude and skills has the potential to demoralise these recent college graduates, thus inhibiting the objectives of Emiratisation. The key fact is that current education methods are not working.

Tom Pattillo, Canada

Klingon lessons not a big priority

As a Star Trek fan, I was disappointed to read that only 10 people have purchased Eton Institute's software language course (Klingon fails to catch on, August 2).

Still, I suppose there are other, more useful languages to learn if you live in the UAE. Gareth Jones, Dubai


Shooting requires a detailed inquiry

As an Indian citizen living in the US, I was shocked and disturbed by the attack on unarmed fishermen off the coast of Dubai by the US Navy (Indian fisherman's body to be flown home today, July 25).

It seems the horrors of the so-called "war on terror" have gone awry to the extent that even innocent people fishing are considered fair game by the US military.

That this senseless incident occurred off the coast of one of the Middle East's most peaceful cities is a reminder that anybody in any place, under any circumstances, can be targeted, even when distant from the US itself.

This incident should prompt not just a detailed inquiry but also a vigorous debate about the ethics and strategic purpose of hosting the US military in the Arabian Gulf.

Suhail Shafi, US

Crime pays for US prison system

Regarding Nine arrests at rallies over police shootings (July 31), racial profiling is standard protocol by the police forces of the United States, because the governments and private companies that run prisons make millions of dollars from locking up minorities.

The young men who are lucky enough to keep their lives end up behind bars working for sweatshop wages.

Brandt Hardin, US

Traffic courtesy goes a long way

I was drawn to this quote from Dr Annie Crookes in Psychology that drives the rush to break fast (August 1): "Those who are not fasting should be gracious when they see someone driving badly."

This is sound advice, just as it's wise to be gracious about local customs when in other countries.

Mamba Sna, Dubai

I didn't know whether to laugh or cry when an Abu Dhabi taxi driver, who had twice almost run into the vehicle in front us while he was texting, solemnly told me that women shouldn't be allowed to drive because they were always using their mobile phones. Colin Richards, Abu Dhabi