I am glad to see that the media took enough time away from focusing on Kim Kardashian and Kanye West to acknowledge the death of the American foreign aid worker Kayla Mueller.

And yet for all the talk about her on TV and in the papers, there is a convenient omission of any mention of her work with the International Solidarity Movement and its nonviolent struggle for Palestinian rights.

Why is this? Is it for the same reason that for all of our talk of honoring Martin Luther King, we never mention his fight for any other social issue besides civil rights?

After all, unlike Jim Crow, objecting to war is still considered controversial. Kayla worked to help Palestinians for the same reason she worked with Syrian refugees, because her conscience demanded it, just as Rachel Corrie’s did.

But we soon forgot about Rachel Corrie, perhaps because Islamophobes can’t use her death from a bulldozer the same way they will use Kayla’s death as one more justification for hating the Muslim world in its entirety.

I don’t wish to politicize the death of a humanitarian, but it is obvious that it already has been politicized. If you really want to honor her, follow her example.

Stop closing your eyes, not only to the injustices faced by the Syrians (which is easy for us to do, since we hate their government) but also to the suffering that the Palestinian people continue to face at the hands of one of our allies.

And for the record, I am speaking as someone who acknowledges Israel’s right to exist.

Paul Parsons

Portland