Je Suis Humain: A Plea to Embrace Our Humanity

Jan 17

For the first time since World War II, the Grand Synagogue in Paris did not host its normal Shabbat services on Friday, in the wake of terrorist attacks that started with Charlie Hebdo and ended in a bloody standoff at a Jewish kosher shop in Paris. This hostage taking at a Jewish business is one of many indicators suggesting a rise of anti-Semitism in Europe,...

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Je Suis Charlie: In Defense of Free Speech

Jan 09

Je Suis Charlie: In Defense of Free Speech

Posted on Huffington Post, January 9, 2015. I admire Charlie Hebdo for standing up against threats to free speech, but I am saddened to see them pay such a heavy price for their beliefs. Cartoons and satire, even the most provocative ones, remain vital for a healthy civil society. Only the deranged are threatened by them. Charlie Hebdo wanted to spread a little...

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Maher-Affleck Debate

Oct 16

Maher-Affleck Debate

Prof. David Schwam-Baird and I appeared recently on WJCT’s First Coast Connect to discuss Maher-Affleck spat. To listen to the interview, CLICK HERE. Nicholas Kristof from the New York Times provided an an excellent response to Bill Maher in his column The Diversity of Islam. “Let’s not feed Islamophobic bigotry by highlighting only the horrors while...

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Boko Haram and Bill Maher Are Both Wrong

May 23

Huffington Post Recently a friend commented that even if the Muslim community engaged in a thousand interfaith dialogues, the headline that a Nigerian Muslim extremist group, Boko Haram, has abducted school girls threatening to sell them as slaves is enough to overshadow efforts at building bridges of understanding. Groups like Al Qaeda and Boko Haram claim to...

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Tsarnaevs, Mass Murders and Radicalization

May 02

Huffington Post  Tsarnaevs, Mass Murders and Radicalization by Parvez Ahmed Tamerlan and Dzokhar Tsarnaev resemble Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, the Columbine gunmen who killed 13 people using guns, explosive devices and bombs rigged to cars. And yet, unlike with the Tasrnaevs, no one dug into which church Harris and Klebold worshiped at. Timothy McVeigh, the...

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Appreciating Islam’s Contribution to Civilization

Jul 05

Huffington Post, July 5, 2012 Also on Patheos, July 5, 2012. Nearly 4 in 10 Americans hold an unfavorable view of Islam and Muslims. That number has remained steady since 9-11. Several factors contribute to this negative perception, certainly none greater than Muslims, albeit a few, committing terrorism in the name of Islam. The media exasperates this negativity, as...

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