I am so sad to learn of the recent vandalism attacks on Cafe Soriah and other restaurants. Although the exact motives of these acts are not known, there is a common thread of restaurants serving food considered to be of non-European origins.
The owner of Cafe Soriah, Ibrahim Hamide is a dedicated peacemaker and brings genuine goodness to our community, working for justice and to remind us all of our shared humanity. As a member of First Congregational United Church of Christ, I am grateful for all the ways he has enriched our congregation. From being a spiritual leader in our Peace Village summer youth camp for over 10 years, to annually talking with our 9th-grade youth in their Faith Explorations class (formerly Confirmation), to being involved in Adult Education, Hamide has given generously of his time and heart.
To the vandals of all of these restaurants, I say, “Please stop these senseless acts and allow the wonderful Eugene community that Hamide has helped us build, embrace you.”
I am grateful for Hamide and all he does for us, as well as other restaurant owners and for the diversity of food choices they share with us. There is no place for xenophobia in Eugene.