December 1979

Iranian students talk
by Lisa O'C

   Iranian students at Maine South have been teased and heckled and one has had his home vandalized.
   A freshman student had "Go home Iranians" painted on his home in addition to the jeers and taunts he has been receiving in the halls and in the cafeteria. He commented, "People who tease me don't know what's going on in Iran. I don't have any respect for them."
   This student's parents have been living in the United States as naturalized students for 22 years. They left Iran a few years after the attempted revolution of 1954. His parents worry about their relatives still living in Iran, especially the ones associated with the 1954 revolution, because the Ayatollah Khomeini has a particular hatred for those revolutionaries since some of his children were killed at that time.
   Another Iranian student, a senior, says that his family fears for their relatives in Iran also. "We constantly worry about our relatives. There are riots in Iran every day--especially in Tehran where my relatives live. Even though they are against the Ayatollah, there's no way to avoid the violence when you leave home, even if it's just to go to the store."
   These two students and a third, another senior, all agree that Khomeini is not helping Iran at all. The second senior believes, "The Ayatollah is destroying everything the Shah (Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi) built in 34 years. The best thing for Iran would've been to let the Shah stay and correct his mistakes."
   The three Iranians also agree that the taking of the hostages was an immoral action. The first senior said,"Even my relatives returned to Iran since the Ayatollah has been in power," and she was surprised how all the people totally supported him.
   "The Americans who were taken hostage don't have anything to do with the politics in Iran. I think the Ayatollah is crazy," said the first senior.
   The second senior expressed a little hope for Iran. "There is another Ayatollah who's gaining popularity in Iran. He's more educated and more secure--possibly he could run the government better."