Do Emiratis who wed foreigners hurt UAE culture?

Readers discuss whether UAE culture is bolstered by Emiratis marrying fellow Emiratis. Other topics: children's diet, abuse training, lateness and Pakistan massacre.

Readers discuss whether Emirati culture is weakened by marrying foreigners. Satish Kumar / The National
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As an Emirati woman married to a British man, I read with interest your story, FNC members encourage Emiratis to marry locals (December 16).

Nobody can tell me who to marry. I agree that Emiratis and Gulf men in general divorce very easily, without even trying to save the marriage. The law makes it easy for them to do so.

Thanks to the decree of 2011, I don’t lose any of my benefits or rights by marrying a foreigner.

We met in Abu Dhabi through a colleague and now we have a son.

Elham Al-Marzouqi McMillan, Dubai

As a foreigner, I have accepted and incorporated a lot of Emirati traditions and customs into my daily life in areas like language, food and religious holidays.

I can also see how Emirati life has been made richer by what foreigners have brought into it. So long as people have the right basic values, I don’t believe there will be any danger of Emirati culture disappearing.

Ksenia Giorno, Dubai

Preserving Emirati and Islamic culture in children is a serious issue, as is ensuring that the Arabic language is used.

This country is unrecognisable in comparison to 35 years ago. Indeed, modernity and progress come at a high price.

Abu Waleed Al Maghribi, Sharjah

Good nutrition should be taught

Your story, Some UAE children have cholesterol levels found in 60-year-old men, doctors say (December 17), proves that health awareness should be part of the school curriculum.

It should start from the first year in school, right through to Grade 12. This is essential.

Dina Abou-Zahr, Lebanon

Parents and nannies have to go for fresh food, much more of which is now available here and grown in the UAE.

This includes fresh bread, cheese, vegetables, yogurt, fruit, pastas (made fresh with healthy ingredients such as garlic and broccoli) and rice.

Mezze is mostly very good too, with fresh products such as tabbouli and hummus.

Buying these products also supports the local economy.

Brigitte von Bulow, Abu Dhabi

I believe parents have to take some responsibility for this.

It is always easier to let the children eat whatever they like instead of trying to get them to eat something healthy.

James Fildes, Dubai

I was surprised by how many American food chains and fast food restaurants there are here.

There need to be more smoothie and frozen yogurt franchises available so that people have more healthy options from which to choose.

Hilary Davis, US

Abuse training is a good first step

Your news article, Child abuse training for school personnel (December 17), suggests that after 15 hours of training, anyone caring for children will be able to notice and act on neglect and abuse.

This training is a step in the right direction but it is not enough.

Fiona Cooke, Dubai

I am sure that this training, when combined with their daily experience of dealing with children, will amount to some lives being saved.

There is only so much you can be taught. The rest relies on experience and instinct.

Ameerah Heerden, Abu Dhabi

Running late is bad manners

Rym Ghazal makes an excellent point in her column, 'On the way' and other lies of our time-stressed age (December 17).

I hate lateness. Anyone who habitually runs late should just leave earlier.

It seems pretty simple to me.

Samantha Attfield, Abu Dhabi

If you’ve already missed several appointments by being late then try to make another appointment, you should be removed from the client list and told to find another doctor, dentist, hairdresser, beauty salon etc.

It may sound tough, but this is how it works in the UK.

Daniel Rose, Abu Dhabi

Being late is simply rude and ignorant.

Brett Pearson, Abu Dhabi

Pakistan attack was merciless

As a Pakistani, your story, Pakistan community in UAE tell of shock at school attack in Peshawar (December 16), marks a sad day for my country.

Whatever these terrorists have done cannot be associated with Islam or justified by it.

A massacre like this has nothing to do with Islam.

Hira Malik, Abu Dhabi