They are part of the national fabric that holds our country together. They contribute to America in many ways, and deserve the same respect as any of us. I pledge to spread this message, and affirm our country’s principles of liberty and justice for all.
Posted by Anni on Monday, March 26th, 2012
I was an athlete all through school. I played soccer and basketball for all four years of high school and all four years of college. We played a lot of parochial schools in our league. They would pray before games and again afterwards. We also played Orthodox Jewish schools and had to plan our games around Jewish holidays. I don’t ever remember there being any conflict about the fact that we were playing religiously oriented teams so I was rather surprised to read about the recent controversy in Texas.
Posted by Anni on Friday, March 23rd, 2012
If I were asked to identify one entity that I felt, if changed, would dramatically improve the image and lives of Muslims in America, it would be Fox News. This is thoroughly unsurprising. Fox has a longstanding reputation for vitriol. Even Fox’s fans recognize the polarization—for Fox vs. against—that splits our popular culture like a knife through butter. But they may not recognize the fabricated stories, the lack of fact checking, or the rampant opinion masquerading as real news. And can we really blame them? Every program on the network is designed to entertain, to shock, to terrorize, and to rally, and each of those things is compelling.
Posted by Anni on Friday, March 16th, 2012
As you have likely heard, mayhem has broken out in Afganistan over the mistaken burning of Qurans at an American military base. Understandably, Afgan civilians and soldiers are outraged, a dangerous thing for people to be in a region of the world plagued by unrest and violence. As of the beginning of this month, the event has been linked to dozens of deaths in the region. In an attempt to quell the anger, President Obama made a public apology for the event. I was pleasantly surprised by his apology. Apologizing for such a blatant piece of disrespect in a war-torn and heavily religious country where we are guests, is the right thing to do. Unfortunately others in the political spotlight disagreed.
Posted by Anni on Thursday, March 15th, 2012
While we may not realize it in America with our baseball and football, soccer is the most popular team sport in the world. In recent years, women have found a place on the field, as many countries have begun to recognize the skill of their female athletes. International women’s leagues have raised the level of play, and today the women’s World Cup, while perhaps not quite as feverishly followed as the men’s, has thousands of die-hard fans. For young girls, soccer is a great way to build self-esteem, physical fitness, and interpersonal relationships. For the elite female athlete, soccer can now be a career. Of course, women’s soccer is not without its controversies. Recently, FIFA banned the hijab from the field.
Posted by Anni on Wednesday, March 14th, 2012
At this point in our nation’s history, islamophobia has become a constant hum. Each time someone new proposes a prejudice-driven piece of legislation, speaks out against a peaceful mosque, protests against a Muslim television program, or otherwise feels the need to share xenophobic rhetoric, life gets a little darker for a lot of people. How is the average Muslim living in America supposed to process these constant reminders of the prejudice all around him?
Posted by Anni on Friday, March 9th, 2012
I know it’s been quite a while since the controversy erupted over the proposed mosque at ground zero, but I think it is a discussion that deserves revisiting. The controversy raised a whole slew of questions about fear, remembrance, respect, freedom, and tolerance that are just as relevant today as they were two years ago. I don’t think a consensus was every truly reached—if one can ever be reached in our melee of a media—and I think the debate should be one that we revisit as we continue to struggle with these questions.
Posted by Anni on Wednesday, March 7th, 2012
Call me crazy, but these days the word “counter-terrorism” is almost as scary as the word “terrorism.” All manner of unsavory things have been done in the name of counter-terrorism. Fear engenders pre-emptive action, and that action results in the imprisonment, harassment or profiling of innocent citizens. This is a direct violation of the rights of American people, and yet, because it’s done in the name of counter-terrorism, it persists.