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Hussam has been a lifelong human rights activist who is passionate about promoting democratic societies, in the US and worldwide, in which all people, including immigrants, workers, minorities, and the poor enjoy freedom, justice, economic justice, respect, and equality. Mr. Ayloush frequently lectures on Islam, media relations, civil rights, hate crimes and international affairs. He has consistently appeared in local, national, and international media. Full biography at: http://hussamayloush.blogspot.com/2006/08/biography-of-hussam-ayloush.html

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Karen Dabdoub: 9-11

From the Blog of Karen Dabdoub
Karen Dabdoub is the Executive Director of the Cincinnati office of CAIR-Ohio

Today is 9-11-07. What does that mean to me? On that awful day six years ago I was working at a local mosque and I spent the day in tears as hateful phone calls and death threats continued to heap on me the hatefulness and fear of some people. I also cried at the many expressions of love, support and offers of help that came in at 10 times the rate of the hate. So every year since then I have spent 9-11 participating in Peace Walks that have included people and places of worship from many different faiths, walking for peace, talking about peace, wishing, hoping and praying for peace in our world.

Well, all those wishes, hopes and prayers haven't been answered yet or have they? Just being with all the wonderful people who take the time and make the effort to publicly state that they want to live in a world of peace and that they are doing what they can to make it happen is a wonderful thing. That's probably all that most of us can do. And now I think I have graduated to a new level.

What did I do to commemorate 9-11 this year? On 9-8 I spoke at a Women's Spirituality Conference to a group of about 50, mostly Catholic, women and I shared with them my love of Islam and the very special ways that God loves us all. On 9-9 I walked in the local "Race for the Cure" to help support breast cancer research. In the afternoon I participated in a forum called "One Nation Under God: Religion, Government & Public Policy" that was organized by a local peace and justice group. A major theme of the discussion was how we live out our values personally and in our public institutions within a democracy. I ended the day by attending my Muslim, Jewish, Christian trialogue group where we discussed stereotypes of religions and a future trip to the Holy Land to explore the possibilities of peace there.

For me all these activities are ways in which I can try to live out my convictions and hopefully make my country a better place for all. This also gives me hope for the future of our country and our world. Our world is still a pretty scary place most days, but days filled with positive action are infinitely more worthwhile to me than a day filled only with reminders of what happened that awful day six years ago.

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