how do i tell my story to the world?
To all this may concern:
I write to you in hopes that you can help me tell my story that ruined my life for the simple fact that I was of Arab descent. I am first generation American whose parents are Palestinians; my name is Eyad Shalash. The United States Federal Government appallingly took my freedom and all that was familiar to me in seconds--only to dismiss the case days before trial and with absolutely no apology. I whole heartedly believe I was a victim of racial profiling. I never had anticipated myself ever having to write anyone the way I am now.
I was a senior at University of South Carolina, on the Life Scholarship, double majoring in international business and finance. I held the esteem position of being on the Dean's List for the three semesters prior to my senior year, as well. The Charges that were brought against me from the Federal Government was that of a sealed indictment, so at the time I had absolutely no idea what was going on. In fact, I thought it was a sick joke because I knew myself one not to mess with anything remotely illegal---moreover, a sealed indictment? I felt as if I was being treated like a member of Al-Qaieda.
Maybe because of my Arab descent, they felt that I was a danger to homeland security? Sadly, I'll never know. Anyway, I suffered major losses. One that hit home was losing my internship with Merrill Lynch because of the farce of an ongoing investigation into which they were pouring useless energy. The following which I will explain not only caused me to suffer with my education and career but nearly caused my mother a stroke.
The ATF (Alcohol Tobacco and Firearm agency) in ways I'll never understand accused my older brother and I for selling crack cocaine and ecstasy with sentences that reached twenty to life. It was 2005 and supposedly their whole investigation started the beginning of 2002---only a few months after the horrific terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center Buildings. They shackled my brother as if he was a serial killer and told me to turn myself in or they'll have to take me in. Not knowing, at the time, what the possible problem could be, I obliged. I never believed in the Land of the Free, the land of justice and liberty for all, that i would be fighting for my innocence.
Only Two weeks from trial, my lawyer informed me that the case was dismissed. Overjoyed, at first, I was. Only to become so infuriated that I became severely ill and had a dangerously high fever. Thoughts rushed through my head, why should I be happy to get my freedom back? It should not have been taken away from me in the first place! Yet, I did not even get back all my freedom. It has been nearly a year from the day I was accused of all this and still unemployed today because everywhere I apply, I get rejected once they do a background check on me. After all this, one would think the Government would at least take everything off my record that they placed.
I have become cynical in the sense of why would the Government go through the hassle of cleaning up their own mess--I am nothing in their eyes. The Government still has their mark on my "criminal" history record. I was robbed of everything that I accomplished and no apology given. My education was everything I had. Each day in school was like a brick that I used to build my house of success, and once I reached placing the roof of my house, a bulldozer comes and demolishes the years of hard work in seconds. On top of that, they take the bricks with them hindering my ability to even start again.
I was fortunate enough that my family had the money for the lawyer that we had, but we lost over one hundred thousand dollars to them, along with all my dreams and hopes of ever working for a big corporation. Yes, I live in the USA, the country that gives you the most freedom in the world and the country that can rip them away in a split second even if they just do it by mistake. I feel my life is hopeless now. All my dreams of success have now all faded away. I sometimes regret waking up in the morning, jobless at the age of 23 with a college degree. All I ask is for some help or at least for a finger pointing me in the right direction where I can get help. Or at the least, an apology to give me hope in this country once more. More of this story was in the front page of the Charleston paper; I copied that and attached it as well.
- 1 decade agoFavorite Answer
Well, Eyad, here's what I think you should do.
First off, make this a little easier to read. Split it into little paragraphs. Some people have already said they didn't read it all. These are the people you want to reach.
Secondly, send this to EVERY person on this site who bangs on about how America is the land of the free. You know it ain't, I know it ain't. Your story is not too unusual, I hate to say - but if you can just open up one persons eyes then it is worth it.
You are already telling the world your story. I'm sitting in Australia reading this. People need to be educated to the truth of what their government is doing.
- Ellen JLv 71 decade ago
I read it all and it's horrific to think that someone could be treated this way. I'm not sure what you can do and I'm certainly no expert of seeking redress from the government, but I do believe that you won't even start getting justice until you are able to get someone in power interested in your case. Wherever you live, contact your Senators and Congressmen. Send them all the information you have and keep after them. Don't give up if they send you discouraging letters at first. Keep telling them how your life has been ruined and all you want is justice--and to have your name cleared so you can have a career again.
There is also the Freedom of Information Act. Find out what it is and how to use it. Then see what information you can get about your case.
I can't guarantee that you will be able to clear your name but at least you'll feel better about yourself if you aren't just sitting around taking their abuse.
I will pray to God that He will help you in your effort for justice.
- 1 decade ago
Write a book you're well educated. Sue the government. Try to get that stuff removed from you record. Also sue for your lawyers fees. Don't back down.
This is supposed to be the land of the free. Most of the time I believe that's true. Sometimes ya got to wonder. Especially after reading some of your responses. How lazy is our society if this is too long?
Good Luck I hope you get you life back.
- 1 decade ago
Dang, I thought there was a 1000 letter limit to posts? You certainly proved me wrong!
Anyhow, take it to court, many lawyers would be eager to sue the goverment because of racism. And, yes, you can come out vitorious.
[Edit:] After I saw the identically horrible responses you've gotten, mine included, I wish to be a bit more helpful.
Really, you can take it to court. Find a lawyer who'll only charge if you win, and ask him to represent you. If you were really racistly attacked by the goverment, you could take this far. I would really think about shortening you letters to lawyers though, as people DO have as short attention spans when reading online as americans are rumored to have. I read the first five lines bfore posting. Normally, you only post things that long on forums or even a personel website. Anyhow, good luck!
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- ZeinaLv 41 decade ago
I wish I could offer you advice, but the only thing I can say is I'm sorry this happened to you, or to anyone for that matter. You sound like an honest man who just wants to lead a good life despite the hindrance of your descent.
Did you ask for a lawyer's advice on whether you can do anything to get your record cleaned up? You have fought for what you achieved up to now, dont give up...
I wish you all the best!!!
- 1 decade ago
im sorry they did this to u but this place is far from being the land of the free. the only reason they did it is because u r an Arab and everyone is scared of Arabs because some of them have caused lots of problems here, but just because ur Arab doesnt mean u r like that. people hate what they dont know. im sorry for ur loss and i hope that one day u can regain all u have lost.
- xtcgurl123Lv 41 decade ago
You should write your story and find a publisher or try to sell your story to a movie producer. I wish I knew more to tell you. Your story is horrific. It saddens me, but does not surprise me to know that the government is so cruel, prejudiced, and corrupt.
- 1 decade ago
try to get a lawyer and take it to supreme court.Publicity too is the way to go.Contact local,and well known news stations get your story published and heard.God Bless and good luck I will pray for you
- 1 decade ago
start with chapter 1 page 1
- 42Lv 61 decade ago
sorry to tell you that this is the wrong place - people are not into such long questions....
try to shorten it - and don't forget it's about questions and not storys...
try to talk to the media if it is a really good story