Stripped of her rights and her humanity, she had to find a way to survive and support her family. Despite the restrictive laws, Sidiqi and her sisters created a successful dressmaking business that kept many from the brink of poverty and starvation.
I loved this book. The strength, resourcefulness, and courage it took to take on this kind of enterprise with all of the boundaries in front of them astounded me. I wanted to cheer, I wanted to shout, and I want to make sure that the contributions these women made to global feminism are not forgotten.
Do I recommend it? Absolutely.
The Dressmaker of Khair Khana: Five Sisters, One Remarkable Family, and the Woman Who Risked Everything to Keep Them Safe is available wherever books are sold.
We all know that war and death go hand in hand. The question that unfortunately too often avoided is who is killed. Is it the soldier on the battlefield or the civilian who is trying to live as normally as possible?
Last Friday, Rabbi Leo Dee lost two of his daughters, Maia (20) and Rina (15) in a terrorist attack in Israel. His wife Lucy initially survived the attack but later died in the hospital. As a human being and a fellow Jew, my heart breaks for Rabbi Dee and his family. It’s one thing to destroy a military facility. It is another thing entirely to kill innocent civilians (the Palestinians usually MO). I ask you to close your eyes and just listen to a heartbroken husband and father whose family is forever changed.
The conflict was the subject of one of the segments on The Brian Lehrer Show. My beef with the conversation (as one of the listeners pointed out) is that the blame was mostly put on Israel. It was only later on that the Palestinian leadership was called out for their part in this decades-long war.
In a related news headline, the IDF was again accused of purposefully going after worshippers at the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem last week. As usual, the finger-pointing was in one direction while the truth was buried.
If you are on Twitter, I ask that you create or share an existing tweet with the hashtag#DeesDays. Let Rabbi Leo know that he is not alone as he moves on without his wife and his daughters.
Among the many virtues of democracy is the ability to openly criticize those in power without fear of persecution or death.
Recently Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the decision to do a mass overhaul of the country’s judicial system. In response, millions took to the streets to protest the move and the concern that the right is taking control of the government. Yesterday, it was a segment on WNYC‘s The Brian Lehrer Show.
This is democracy in action. This is the voice of the average citizen who disapproves of the actions of those in power and speaks loudly. Unlike other nations (cough, Iran, cough) in which protesters are jailed, tortured, and killed, there is no such action from the military.
The only thing that I disagree with was the reporter’s statements about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict (which is another topic for another time).
If I was advising Bibi, I would tell him to think long and hard about continuing on the path he is on. If he values his position and the voters who (again) put him in power, he would not listen to a minority whose beliefs differ from the rest of the population.
P.S. The video below speaks for itself in regard to the lies that the Palestinians tell themselves and the rest of the world.
Though our history tells us that heterosexuality is the norm and identifying as LGBTQ is an anomaly, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. The spectrum of human sexuality as a whole has existed for thousands of years, but it is still seen as something new and “different”.
Last week, a bill passed through the Uganda Parliament that criminalizes homosexuality to the extreme. The best case scenario is that the accused is given a jail sentence. The worst-case scenario is being put to death. Adding insult to injury, it can be used as blackmail (regardless of the person’s sexuality) and citizens are required to report those in same-sex relationships to authorities.
As someone who has recently come out of the closet, I am grateful to live in a country that recognizes and respects my humanity. That being said, I am also keenly aware that not everyone in every part of the world is allowed that same dignity.
With all that is going on, this shouldn’t be on the priority list to begin with. Who one goes to bed with should be a private matter and no one’s business. But we live in a culture that demands conformity and punishes those who go their own way.
Traveling via plane is a safe way to get to a faraway destination. But then there are accidents every once in a while that catches the attention and imagination of the world.
In March 2014, Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 (also known as MH370) took off from the airport in Kuala Lumpur. The final destination was Beijing. The plane never arrived at its final destination. For nine years, the questions about what happened to the plane and the 239 souls aboard have yet to be answered.
The new three-part NetflixdocumentaryMH370: The Plane That Disappeared follows the existing breadcrumbs to try to understand exactly what happened. Interviewing family members, experts, journalists, and others leads the viewer down the path of various theories.
What got me was the emotion of the story and the heartbreaking tales from the family members who have yet to have a concrete explanation. Unlike Lost or Manifest, this is not fiction. These are real people who are hurting and desperately craving peace of mind.
Do I recommend it? Absolutely.
MH370: The Plane That Disappeared is available for streaming on Netflix.
The news doesn’t always have to be serious. Sometimes it can be funny.
Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me has been part of the WNYC and NPR schedules since 1998. Currently hosted by Peter Sagal, it is part interview show and part comedic news program. Both panelists and contestants are quizzed about the latest headlines while laughing along the way.
I’ve listened to the show a couple of times. It’s entertaining, but not enough to keep me coming back for more.
As a young woman, she became a local celebrity and an icon of her community. But, as she began to understand what the government was doing, she began to ask questions. These questions forced her to flee and make her way to America while those she loved were being persecuted.
Wow. This book is amazing. This memoir is both heartbreaking and inspiring. Her bravery alone is worth the read. She could have remained silent, even after leaving everything and everyone behind. But instead, she is speaking out, knowing full well that her family and friends will pay the price.
What Ms. Hoja is doing should inspire us all to speak up against injustice and those who are discriminated against because they are different.
Do I recommend it? Absolutely.
A Stone Is Most Precious Where it Belongs: A Memoir of Uyghur Exile, Hope, and Survival is available wherever books are sold.
The anniversary of the beginning of a war is nothing to celebrate. Lives have been lost, property has been destroyed, and people have been displaced.
This week is the one-year anniversary of Russia‘s invasion of Ukraine. To say that it has been a trying time is an understatement. Mainly for the citizens of Ukraine, but also for the rest of the world. Gas prices went up last year, forcing the price of everything else to go up. I know it sounds like a first-world problem and inconsequential compared to those who have been killed, but the world relies on gas for almost everything.
One of the cliches about life is that our true character is revealed when times get tough. The Ukrainian people have proven to be stronger and more capable than I think many assumed they were. I fully believe that they will win. It is only a matter of time and the question of how many more will be slaughtered before peace occurs.
May the memory of those killed be a blessing. Z”l.
January 6th, 2021, was not just a hallmark of American history that no one in this lifetime will forget. It was a sign that democracy overall is not as solid as we once thought it was.
One week ago today, the Brazilian capital was assaulted in what essentially is a mirror image of 1/6. Like their American counterparts, the “protestors” believed that former President Jair Bolsonaro was denied another term based on the lie that he lost the election.
The major difference between both events was the speed at which the accused were found and arrested by the authorities. By last Tuesday, over 1000 people had been located. About half of them have been detained in prison. Compare that to the US where it took months for the police and FBI to do the same.
I heard somewhere last week that one of America’s greatest exports used to be democracy and freedom. These days, it has become autocracy, and the idea that if you are not chosen by the people to lead the government, you can cry foul.
I don’t know about anyone else, but I continue to hope and pray that political leaders across the world will one day return to respecting the rule of law and the voice of voters. But for now, it seems like we are on the path to despots once more taking the leading roles in the running of the nations.
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