How quick we forget. There are articles about hate mail, hate e-mail and white supremacist groups coming to Lewiston.

Don’t get me wrong, I would love to be able to ban, lock up or dis-establish in some way, shape or form every white supremacist group in this country. Unfortunately I served 21-plus years in the military and fought to protect their rights along with everyone else.

To get back to the point. People don’t seem to understand the disdain or outright hatred of the Somali community by some. Let’s not forget that they are reminded every day when they travel Route 196 through Lisbon, “The Sergeant Tommy Field Memorial Highway,” the young man whose naked, abused and desecrated body was dragged through the streets of Mogadishu in October 1993.

Let us not forget MSG Gary Gordon whose memorial service and whose widow and children we all saw on TV. And, let us not forget the bloodied swollen face of CWO Micheal Durant, from New Hampshire, who we have also seen on TV recounting his ordeal and the bravery and gallantry of these fallen comrades.

So when you see letters, talk to people or whatever, try to put things in perspective. Some people may not be happy about Somalis living up the street. This is a small community. It’s not always bigotry or fear, sometimes it’s just understanding or misunderstanding.

Charles Smith, Lisbon Falls

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