I am a conservative. Being born and raised in Bangladesh, I did not grow up in a Republican or a Democrat family. I arrived in the United States when I was 19 years old, as an adult. My faith, my family, the way I was raised, and the principles I inherited from my mother make me a strong conservative.
People who know me, whether in my academic life, professional life, or personal life, would know that I am always ready for a conversation on public policy issues. I have friends with a wide range of beliefs – conservative, liberal and those in the middle. Whether someone agrees with my policy positions or not, I am always happy to have a discussion on issues that affect our lives.
Having been raised in a fairly new country with a parliamentary system of government (Bangladesh, independent as of 1971) and then moving to the United States, being educated in universities in both Dhaka and Wisconsin, experiencing the life of an immigrant and then a naturalized U.S. citizen, and being a lifelong learner in the field of public policy, I am always open to talking with people about economic, social and political issues that impact our lives. I am happy to listen to people’s views (whether those views are similar to mine or not) and to express my opinions and the reasons for my beliefs. Freedom of speech is precious and must be protected.
In spite of my openness to dialogue, it is sad to see that I still receive hate mail in my personal email account. There is no room for name-calling and personal attacks and insults if we want to have a decent dialogue to express our views on policy issues and to listen to the views of others around us.
I have always expressed my thoughts and opinions fearlessly, through speech and writing, and I will continue to do so.
I thank everyone who have shown and continue to show their support for me.