I commend our 86th District State Delegate Ibraheem Samirah for exercising his First Amendment rights in his protest over Donald Trump’s appearance in Jamestown on July 30th. Needed change never happens by being nice or polite. Protest and dissent over government policies is not disgraceful or unpatriotic; the freedom to challenge our elected leaders is a mainstay of our democracy. Criticism of the democratically-elected Israeli government is not necessarily anti-Israel and is by no means anti-Semitic, coming as it does from a second-generation Palestinian. Think of the abandoned Palestinians as many thought of the Catholic minority in Northern Ireland or of the Rohingya people, or… the list of marginalized groups is long… The party of Lincoln has been zombified by Donald Trump, history will judge whether this be good or bad (it’s certainly bad for our political process now). History will also judge how the Israeli government treats its Palestinian brethren.