I root myself to the ground. I will not give in to fear.
Last night my thirteen-year-old attended his first confirmation class, during which they discussed the murders in Pittsburgh.
“There are people who really, really hate Jews, Mom. It pretty much sucks.” I asked him if he wanted to talk about it more, but he said he needed a break from it.
When I started to discuss it yesterday with my nine-year-olds (unplanned, unfortunately), my daughter about lost her mind. “Why do people hate Jews so much?” she sobbed. “Why do they want to kill us? Are they going to come to OUR temple and try to kill US?” I had to pull her down from her perch of hysteria. Her twin brother sat silent, and sad.
I root myself to the ground for my children. I cannot allow them to live in fear.
The following op ed, written by Kamran Azmoudeh, a local dentist, was printed in my daily paper, the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat, on January 8, 2016. It’s worth reading…and re-posting.
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The war on terror and ISIS in particular has hit home in Santa Rosa. Its effects have shaken me and over a million Iranian Americans (and certainly other Muslim Americans) to the core. Not unlike Kristallnacht or the internment of Japanese Americans in 1942, those perceived as Muslim immigrants are becoming victims in this ill-fought war. The events that lead to Kristallnacht started with the same type of hateful ideology, except sadly this is happening today in the United States.
I have lived in this country for 38 years and managed to gain an education which has afforded me a good life. I have been married 24 years to my loving wife who happens to be a Catholic American of European heritage and have two beautiful American children and two American grandchildren. I have been a productive American citizen for decades and proudly hold an American passport, which enables me to travel freely with all the privileges afforded to Americans.Continue reading “HR 158: A Betrayal of Iranian Americans”→
America is struggling in the aftermath of police killings of black men in Ferguson, New York City, Cleveland, Florida, and more…and more. Today Time published an essay by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar entitled “Why I Have Mixed Feelings About MLK Day.” Few celebrities utilize their celebrity status for the well-being of society. Mr. Abdul-Jabbar does.
I reprint the beginning of it below. I encourage you to click through and read the whole thing.
[Full disclosure: I have no interest in the NBA, but I have been a fan of this intelligent and articulate man for years. In fact, I included “Kareem” in Cheesie Mack Is Sort of Freaked Out as the middle name of one of Cheesie’s friends, Glenn Philips…and he, according to Cheesie, is the smartest kid in school.]
Abdul-Jabbar’s essay begins:
I have mixed emotions about Martin Luther King Jr. Day. For me, it’s a time of hopeful celebration — but also of cautionary vigilance. I celebrate an extraordinary man of courage and conviction and his remarkable achievements and hope that I can behave in a manner that honors his sacrifices. And while Dr. King still has his delusional detractors, who have a dream of dismissing his impact on history, it’s not them I worry about.Continue reading “MLK Day and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar”→
After the Newtown tragedy, Connecticut’s Gov. Dan Malloy said, “Evil visited this community today.” But Adam Lanza was not evil. He was insane. Beyond this obvious assertion, I have nothing special or unique to add. But two women do. One is my daughter, Julia Quinn, a wise and caring individual. The other is Liza Long, a Boise-based writer and the mother of a mentally ill teen.
Every once in a while I come across a blog post that deserves wider reading. Hollye Dexter wrote one today. I reprint it unchanged below. The original is here.
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When I started the seventh grade all the other kids seemed to tower over me in the halls. The girls had women’s bodies, and the ninth grade boys had peach fuzz moustaches. But me? I was just a skinny little kid with the unfortunate nickname of Hollye Smally.
I was a friendly girl, well-liked by most of the kids. I made friends with the nerds, stoners, surfers, black kids, white kids, everyone. It was my outgoing nature, and also a good survival tactic. So I kept smiling and waving, smiling and waving…But there was one girl, Liz Baker, who just hated me. I mean, hated. And the strange thing was, I didn’t even know her.