Autism Truths and the Humanity of Us All

April 1, 2016 - Ali Family Truths #1D came up from the basement earlier today, hungry for dinner. Or rather, hangry – losing it in a way I know so well. Mood was restored after dinner was consumed, but that was when I noticed his right forefinger.Bloodied.Whoa, whoa, whoa – wait a minute, I said. Let’s take care of that. And so he willingly allowed me to wash and clean the finger and bandage it. But I still haven’t figured out how it happened. I’m just glad I caught it.D wasn’t ab … [Read more...]

Where We Mourn

A writer and peace seeker recently said to me (paraphrasing), "There should be a 48 hour period of mourning after any tragedy. No commenting, no posting opinions to social media, no rush to judgment or condemnation, no rush to defend or castigate. Forty-eight hours where we mourn and attend to our collective sadness."Seems I'm stepping away from his astute advice by the very act of writing this. But, at times like this -- when Belgians are reeling in Brussels, Turks are reeling in Ankara and … [Read more...]

Why Brandon Stanton’s Letter to Trump Means the World to Muslims, to Humans

Let's pause.Let's pause in a time of frenzied information and sharing of videos, news, quotes, facts and opinions, in a time of seemingly endless what-the-hell moments in listening to the dumbfounding and hateful rhetoric and thoughts spewing from the mouth of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump (and other candidates too - I see you Ted Cruz and your hiring of noted Islamophobe Frank Gaffney as a foreign policy advisor) -- and let's slow it down.Slow it waaaaaaay down for a … [Read more...]

On the Donald, Medicaid Waivers and What I’m Concerned About

I'll not sugar coat it - it's been a difficult month. I'd like to press forward, figure things out and move on. But it's not always that easy. Sometimes we are made to remember, to note it, to mark it down and to remember that which we'd rather not talk about.Case in point: the fight to get a medicaid waiver.I had our monthly visit with D's caseworker for his ID (intellectual disability) waiver today - he is on the wait list for this waiver, which would help get him more care giving … [Read more...]

#OurThreeBrothers – Mourning the Loss of Three Innocent Lives

Say their names: 23-year-old Mohamedtaha Omar, 20-year-old Adam Mekki and 17-year-old Muhannad Tairab.Shot, execution style, last week in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Is this another horrible by-product of the growing anti-Muslim hate and rhetoric being pumped by presidential candidate Donald Trump and others? Is it a hate crime? Are Muslims being targeted? (Omar and Tairab were Muslim. Mekki was Christian, according to news reports.) Is it random, but tragic, violence? Or, is this another example … [Read more...]

Dalia Mogahed’s TED Talk – How Do You See Me? (VIDEO)

Several years ago, Dalia Mogahed , then Gallup's executive director of Muslim studies, co-authored a seminal book with Georgetown University Professor John Eposito - Who Speaks for Islam? What a Billion Muslims Really Think. Based upon the largest Gallup study of global Muslims of its time, the book presented fascinating and sobering findings, addressing (among many other things) what the actual views of the Muslim publics were in contrast to this question: "Are the growing violence and negative … [Read more...]

A Diner Story in Autism Land

It was a quintessential New York corner diner – the hustle of waitresses bringing sandwiches, soups and other lunch and breakfast fair to mostly regular customers. Booths, tables with chairs and a diner counter where you could get what I thought was the best milkshake in New York City.Olympic Flame Diner, on W. 60th Street kitty-corner from then-Roosevelt Hospital – where D was born, where A would be born several months later.Back when D was a little over two years old, and I was, well I … [Read more...]


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