x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 17 January 2018

Pedestrians must take responsibility for their actions

Readers say too many pedestrians, and drivers, are distracted by their mobile phones. Other topics: Disney dolls, Iraq's war and "Islamicity".

Readers say too many pedestrians, and drivers, are distracted by their mobile phones. Lee Hoagland / The National
Readers say too many pedestrians, and drivers, are distracted by their mobile phones. Lee Hoagland / The National

I refer to Pedestrians and smartphones are a bad combination (June 14).

Pedestrians crossing the road from undesignated points, in addition to using their phones and other electronic gadgets, are major distractions.

They not only put their own lives at risk, but those of the drivers using the road. These days, unfortunately, people expect drivers to be responsible for everything.

It is common to see people running between fast-moving traffic to cross the road. Some of them are so busy on their phones that they just walk on to the road without ensuring if it’s safe to do so.

The rate of accidents involving pedestrians would be much lower if people valued life more than their smartphones.

Fatima Suhail, Sharjah

Both pedestrians and drivers are hooked on their smartphones.

I don’t understand what it is that they have to attend to that is more important than their lives.

Rajesh Lakshminarayan, Dubai

‘Islamicity’ study seen differently

The article by Shelina Zahra Janmohamed, ‘Islamicity’ rankings ignore the realities (June 14), was interesting but misses the point about recent findings by Hossein Askari, an Iranian professor of economics working in the United States.

The study referred to found that Ireland ranked highest in the world on “Islamicity” – that is, how closely a society adheres to core Islamic ideals as per the Quran. The study scrutinised economic achievements, governance, ­human and political rights, and international relations.

The findings were not concerned with how Muslims and Islam are viewed by citizens of the 208 countries studied, or indeed, Islam­ophobia, yet this is what Ms Janmohamed focused on, citing the First Minister of Northern Ireland (part of the UK) who is a staunch, anti-Republican Unionist.

Peter Robinson did not say Islam was “evil”, but supported a bigot’s right to say so. He has since issued a public apology to Muslims.

Studies like this are important. Not only do they highlight the gaping chasm between the beautiful theory of Islam and some Muslim-majority countries’ failure to put the ideals into practice, but they also educate non-Muslims as to what exactly Islam is about.

I converted to Islam seven years ago – not a difficult transition, because the core values are what I grew up with in my Irish Presbyterian childhood.

Inequality, discrimination, bigotry and abuse of power can be found in varying degrees in every country in the world.

Turning a blind eye to these practices in the governments of Muslim countries is an insult to the citizens of these places and to Islam.

I hope the leaders of Muslim countries ranked low in “Islamicity” do not dismiss the findings as readily as Ms Janmohamed did.

Safia Moore, Ras Al Khaimah

Iraqis should use talk, not violence

Your editorial, Iraq’s religious ­divide opened door to ISIL (June 14), was thought-provoking.

Ever since their country was invaded by the Americans and their allies, the people of Iraq have seen no peace.

Now Iraq would appear to be in a state of civil war. Violence is not the answer; all groups should engage in a comprehensive peace dialogue.

As an oil-rich nation, Iraq should harness its natural resources for everyone’s benefit, and tackle its problems with diplomacy.

K Ragavan, US

Disney doll is girl’s prized possession

I was interested to read about Sean Cronin’s attempts to buy a gift for his daughter (Frozen out in quest to track down an Elusive Disney Elsa doll, June 15).

My kindergarten-aged daughter just won’t let go of her Elsa doll, She carries it from shower to car.

Mj Tanajura Uy, Abu Dhabi

Fish is fine, if you like to stand in line

I am writing about the blog item, Bu Qtair: seaside seafood on Jumeirah’s shore (June 15).

I went to this restaurant around 9pm on a Wednesday, saw the long lines and waited for a while.

We were told we would have to stand in the line for 15 minutes ­before we could order, and then wait another 40 minutes for the fish to arrive.

We decided to leave.

Muzammil Sk, Ajman

We have tried their fish and not only did it taste good, it was also quite reasonably priced.

However, the long queues and waiting time made it a bit of an ­uncomfortable experience.

Name withheld by request