Muslims (Depending on Who You Ask) at Oscars 2017

To save one life is to save all of humanity. – Quran, 5:32Do we talk about Iranian director Asghari Farhadi’s winning his second Academy Award for his film, “The Salesman,” but boycotting the event because Iran is one of the seven countries targeted by President Donald Trump’s #MuslimBan?Do we talk about how Khaled Khateeb, a 21-year-old cinematographer and Syrian national who filmed “The White Helmets” was denied entry to the U.S. to attend the 2017 Oscars because of aforementioned #Musl … [Read more...]

Stay Woke: 15 Women and Men on Why They Marched in the Women’s March

The numbers tell the story: More than 3.3 million people joined more than 500 Women’s Marches across the United States, with estimates showing 1 out of every 100 Americans attended. More than 70 sister marches occurred around the world, even in Antarctica. In fact, there were marches on all seven continents. The Women’s March on Washington (with lower estimations putting the numbers at 500,000) was nearly three times the size of President Donald Trump’s inaugural crowd.There were zero arres … [Read more...]

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An Autism Story – on Betsy DeVos, the Supreme Court and What Should Matter to Us All

Nearly five years ago, we sat in a room – myself, my husband, D’s teacher and principal at the time plus representatives from our county’s exceptional education department. We were at the tail end of a long, difficult, heart-breaking fifth-grade year for D, trying to come to an agreement regarding his future schooling and education.By this point, D had spent five years in our public-school system in two different self-contained autism classrooms under the tutelage of two capable teachers and … [Read more...]

When #NeverAgain becomes Again and Again – How to Help in Syria

Embed from Getty ImagesAs the phrase goes - Never Again.Except it does keep happening. Again. And Again. And Again.Out of Syria, in eastern Aleppo, comes grim reports of a city on the brink of annihilation. Of mothers wondering how and when their children will die. Of Syrians tweeting out questions to scholars if they could commit suicide before they are killed or tortured. Of Syrians being shot and killed point blank. Of Syrian men asking if they're women can choose to die … [Read more...]

Amazon Go, a ‘No-Check-Out-Line’ Grocery Store, Great Option for Autism Families

Um, where was this when I lived in New York City with D and his baby sister A more than a decade ago and used to practice walking up and down the aisles of our local grocery store with D, praising him for keeping himself together and giving him an M&M at the end of every aisle?(Yes, I know it was classic ABA, classic Pavlovian training, all that. But it was pretty much the only thing out there at the time in regards to autism behavior therapy.)Grocery stores, any stores have always … [Read more...]

Facing the Future in Autism Land

The future rewards those who press on. I don't have time to feel sorry for myself. I don't have time to complain. I'm going to press on. – President Barack ObamaAs I waited for my own fella, I saw the youngster walk out of the school, accompanied by a teacher’s aide. I had seen the child numerous times in the past, in fact just the day before when I had been at D’s school for a parent-teacher conference and a fire alarm drill happened.That day the child, I’m guessing eight or nine years o … [Read more...]

A Trump Presidency – Conversations with our Children

Last night (in my opinion) ended badly.This morning started badly. I had to do what millions of parents who were not in favor of a Trump presidency were doing: Break the news to my kids. It did not go over well.We get small pockets of time with our children to explain tough things, times when they are open to hearing us and absorbing our words. You look for those times and dive in when you see it. Quickly enough, the window closes.I dove into the window with my daughter this morning, … [Read more...]