The world according to Sam/Samad/Samad Sultan works in strange ways…
By Chris Ingram
There has been a mix of responses to my post about the Hillsborough County Commission race between Josh Burgin and Mark Sharpe. The views expressed have been either in agreement that Burgin is woefully unqualified or painting me as a racist or bigot.
The racist/bigot charge is apparently in reference to my referring to Sam Rashid by his LEGAL name which is Samad. In my column I referenced Mr. Rashid as “Sam” multiple times because that is how I address him when I see him and it is his preference. In total, I referred to him as “Sam” seven times in my column yesterday. ONE TIME I mentioned him as “Samad” because right after this reference I linked his “player profile” on a poker player’s website wherein he is listed as “Samad Rashid.” I did this in order to avoid any confusion among those who may have looked at the poker site and been uncertain as to whether or not “Sam” was “Samad” as he is listed on the poker site. Not only did I list him the way he is referenced on that site, but how he is listed on county property tax records, and more than likely how he is named on his driver’s license. Afterall, Samad is his legal name.
Had I had any intent of somehow painting him negatively due to his Arabic descent, I would have mentioned his FULL legal name which is Samad Sultan Rashid. I didn’t because it was not my intent to disparage Mr. Rashid based on his birth name or origin – Sam’s actions have given me enough fodder that such an action is not necessary.
Let me also add I don’t have a problem with Sam playing semi-professional poker. In fact I like to play a friendly game of poker myself from time to time (though I am not very good). I just find it hypocritical for Josh Burgin to portray himself as a “social conservative” while having strong ties to a guy like Sam who has gambled hundreds of thousands of dollars playing poker. We’ve got enough hypocrites in office. We don’t need any more.
As for Burgin’s education and experience (or lack thereof), I don’t have any problem with the fact that Burgin has his GED and never graduated from college. I have a problem that a guy with eleven jobs in twelve years who doesn’t have a college education and who hasn’t really accomplished much professionally thinks he has what it takes to represent a county as big as Hillsborough. It would be one thing if he were sans college degree but he ran a successful business. That isn’t the case here, and that is my point.
I don’t look down on anyone based on their level of education or work experience. I do however take issue with said education and experience when a candidate for public office makes it an issue and is misleading or not wholly honest about it – as Mr. Burgin’s reference to attending college at USF appears to be.
Finally, if you are one of the few people who have been offended by my column about Burgin, you apparently don’t understand the meaning of the words “irreverent view.” Please visit www.dictionary.com and type in the word “irreverent” before complaining next time.
Or just get over it. Or unsubscribe yourself. Or send me an e-mail and I’ll do it for you.
Christopher “Chris” Charles Ingram is the president and founder of 411 Communications a corporate and political communications firm, and publisher of www.IrreverentView.com. Ingram is a frequent pundit on Fox News and CNN, and has written opinion columns for the Washington Times, UPI, Front Page Florida, and National Review online. E-mail him at: Chris@IrreverentView.com.
Please feel free to submit a comment on our blogs. By posting a comment you acknowledge reading and following the terms and conditions of posting found here. You may also submit a comment by e-mail. If you e-mail a comment you consent to your comment and first name being posted on the Irreverent View website. If you wish to remain completely anonymous, please state so in your e-mail.