Watch Sahar's Message to President Obama: Apple Won't Listen, Will You?
Watch Sahar's message to President Obama and take a moment to send you own letter calling for the President to take action ensure that sanctions stop hurting the wrong people in the U.S. and Iran and support human rights and civil liberties.
For many Iranian Americans, as we gather with our families to celebrate the Fourth of July, it is a time to reflect on the values that inspired our journey to the United States and to appreciate the rights codified in the Declaration of Independence.
But we are also reminded that those rights can’t be taken for granted.
Apple violated the civil rights of Sahar Sabet, a 19-year old Iranian-American student who was the first to go public with her story about how an Apple employee refused to sell her an iPad because she was speaking Persian.
Now we have now learned of at least seven more cases of potential discrimination and profiling against Iranians and Iranian Americans by Apple employees at retail stores in California, Georgia, Maryland, Texas and Virginia.
This Independence Day, Sahar is sending a message to President Obama to protect the civil liberties to which all Americans are entitled.
While we continue to press Apple, it is ultimately U.S. sanctions that are driving these episodes of discrimination. It is up to policymakers to prevent the sanctions from undermining civil liberties here in the U.S. and punishing ordinary people in Iran.
Watch Sahar’s message to President Obama and take a moment
to send you own letter calling for the President to take action ensure that sanctions stop hurting the wrong
people in the U.S. and Iran and to support human rights and civil liberties.
Read Sahar's letter below:
July 4th, 2012
The Honorable Barack
Happy Independence Day Mr. President,
My name is Sahar Sabet. I am a 19-year-old Iranian-American student. Four years ago, I saw my sister vote for you, and I could not wait to be old enough to vote for change like my sister.
Mr. President, I am writing you because I was discriminated against in my hometown of Alpharetta, Georgia by an Apple employee. I was denied purchase of a birthday gift for my sister because of my Iranian heritage. I am sure you know how bad it feels, being from a multi-cultural, multi-racial upbringing yourself. You are probably one of the greatest inspirations of my generation, showing us that even in the face of such discrimination, we can and will prevail.
Mr. President, what happened to me wasn’t the product of bigotry by a single person. It was the product of policies and sanctions that are hurting the ordinary Iranian people. And now Iranian- Americans are also feeling the effects of sanctions. These policies are pressuring businesses like Apple to profile us.
Mr. President, we all want change within Iran. However, as years of sanctions against Cuba have shown, these policies have only hurt the innocent Cuban people and American businesses. Similarly, all the sanctions against North Korea have not changed anything about the government, but it sure causes great suffering and pain for the people and children of that country. This is not the change we are hoping for in Iran, where my family and friends are struggling under sanctions, or here at home, where my civil rights are being violated.
Mr. President, I am asking you to ensure that your sanctions stop hurting the wrong people and your policies support human rights and civil liberties. Apple did not listen to me, Mr. President will you?
Sahar M. Sabet