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"Freeing yourself was one thing; claiming ownership of that freed self was another." author Toni Morrison (1931- 05.08.2019)

“If I tell the story, I control the version. Because if I tell the story, I can make you laugh, and I would rather have you laugh at me than feel sorry for me”; Nora Ephron, author/comedian

"Make your story count". Michelle Obama

"Social pain is understood through the lens of racial animus". Researcher/author Sean McElwee writing in Salon, 2016

"We are citizens, not subjects. We have the right to criticize government without fear."  Chelsea Manning; activist/whisleblower

“My father was a slave and my people died to build this country, and I’m going to stay right here and have a part of it, just like you, And no fascist minded people, like you, will drive me from it. Is that clear?” Paul Robeson; activist/singer

“We have a system of justice in this country that treats you much better if you're rich and guilty than if you're poor and innocent”. from civil rights attorney Bryan Stevenson

“This Fourth of July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn. To drag a man in fetters into the grand illuminated temple of liberty, and call upon him to join you in joyous anthems, were inhuman mockery and sacrilegious irony. Do you mean, citizens, to mock me, by asking me to speak today?” Frederick Douglass, WHAT TO THE SLAVE IS 4TH JULY? 07.05.1852 (full text in blog)

Senator Elizabeth Warren "We're a country that is built on our differences; that is our strength, not our weakness"

 

"We are more alike than we are different"v  Maya Angelou

As a Black writer, I was expected to accept the role of victim. That made it difficult in the beginning to be a writer.      James Baldwin

I often feel that there must have been something that I should’ve done that I didn’t do. But I can’t identify what it is that I didn’t do. That’s the first difficulty. And the second is, what makes you think you’re it?   

         Harry Belafonte, activist and singer at 89

 

It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble; It's what you know for sure that just ainst so.

Mark Twain

 

You can't be brave if you've only had wonderful things happen to you.

Mary Tyler Moore

 

 You can’t defend Christianity by being against refugees and other religions

Pope Francis:

 

"I don't have to be what you want me to be". Muhammad Ali

"The Secret of Living Well and Longer: eat half, walk double, laugh triple, and love without measure"  attributed to Tibetan sources

Recent audio posts include interviews with Rumi interpreter Shahram Shiva, London-based author Aamer Hussein, South African Muslim scholar, professor Farid Esack, and Iraqi journalist Nermeen Al-Mufti's brief account of Kirkuk City history. Your comments on our blogs are always welcome.

 

Dignity. Dignity. Dignity

2011-02-11

by Barbara Nimri Aziz

Let us savor the moment that the Egyptian people have won for themselves and given the whole world.

Mubrouk, elf Mabrouk to the revolutionaries of Egypt, to the martyrs who gave their lives in this struggle. 

Dignity. Dignity. Dignity. We hear the word repeated by Egyptian celebrants. What so many risked was not their daily food, not stagnant jobs, not fear of mobs. It was the moment to regain dignity.  

Few people in the west, whatever degree of dignity they enjoy, often forget the real meaning of this precious human quality. Perhaps seeing the determination, the daring, and the voices of the protestors during these past 18 days, viewers around the world may reflect on this word and its significance to their own lives.  

I follow coverage of the celebrations in Cairo moving from one international TV program to another.  Only on the western networks-- CNN and BBC and France 24— commentators one after another, press the jubilant Cairiens to speculate on their precarious future. The interviewers raise the specter of the US enemy Iran; they suggest the danger of a military takeover; they ask about Muslim extremists overtaking Egypt; the want answers for the threat the victory posed to the peace treaty Israel.  

A pity they cannot savor the moment. What a pity they cannot grasp the meaning of newly won dignity.  

We are proud of Tunisia’s and Egypt’s achievement.  We congratulate all their people. 

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