I believe Martin Luther King Jr.’s vision is as needed in the 21st Century as it was needed in the 20th century. His vision of civil rights as a pathway to social justice needs to become the driving force for each and every American if we truly believe in a future lived with dignity and fulfillment. Dr. King inspires us and makes us believe that we have a say in our future and in the future of every American, regardless…..
I first met Dr. Souheil Bushrui in 1970 when I was a student at AUB, and then as a friend of my father Albert Rihani. It did not take more than two or three encounters with him to recognize that he was an erudite renaissance man, a mentor, and a world citizen. We became very good friends. Many things connected us: our love for literature, our recognition that small countries often have big destinies, a belief that the East and…..
I believe our vision for the rest of the 21st Century should be a vision of social justice as a pathway to Peace, and I believe Arab and Arab-American women and men must become major actors to help facilitate the realization of this vision. It takes imagination to believe in such a vision. However, I believe in the power of imagination. Social Justice happens by: • embracing the principles of equal rights; • valuing the importance of diversity; • adopting…..
The majority of countries where extremism is flourishing are countries where poverty and archaic systems of education intersect and where five conditions exist at the same time: 1. Wide spread poverty in some regions of these countries; 2. Old, archaic systems of education where the content of education and the methodologies of teaching do not respect basic human rights and devalue girls and women; 3. Low girls’ secondary education completion rates; 4. A gap between girls’ completion rates and boys’…..
I believe Lebanon has played a unique role in the Middle East. This role, that the country played since its independence in 1943, (and even before its independence), till the present was based on the intersection of three major concepts. 1- Freedoms have to be valued and practiced; 2- Peaceful coexistence of all religions, through respect, has to be celebrated and regarded as a top priority; 3- Quality education for girls and boys, women and men, is a valuable “natural…..
Often when we think about the Arab countries we think that all the news regarding women is negative. I disagree with this trend of thinking. There is a lot going on in the Arab world that is positive regarding women’s advancement and achievements. I would like to highlight some of these achievements. In Jordan, for example, the well established non governmental organization, INJAZ which is led by Jordanian women and which has as a mission to inspire and prepare youth…..
Malala Yousafzai, the young 17-year-old who was shot in the head when she was barely 15 for wanting to go to school and for speaking out her belief that every girl and boy should also go to school, has become the symbol of progress and advancement over the forces of hatred and extremism. We should all applaud the Nobel Committee for awarding Malala the Noble Peace Prize. By doing so, they have amplified her voice and strengthened her advocacy for…..
I strongly believe that the majority of the women and men in the Arab World are against ISIS. How can they support ISIS when they learn that this barbaric group of thugs are kidnapping women, enslaving them, raping them, and then selling them? How can they support ISIS when these bloodthirsty savages kill and cut the throats of innocent individuals? How can they support these criminals when they know that their young daughters are preys for these monsters? The more…..
Education is one of the most transformative endeavors a child undertakes and this is why Boko Haram and other extremists organizations, including the Taliban, oppose it. In many developing countries, the percentage of girls completing secondary education is lower than 25%. When a high percentage of girls participate in, or ideally complete, secondary school, their life expectations change as does their behavior, and many benefits will be accrued by them, their families, and their communities. Here are ten outcomes of…..
The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), a militant group now declaring itself to be an Islamic State, poses serious and dangerous threats to everyone in the territories they occupy. Among these deeply concerning threats are those aimed at Christians and Yazidis, and in particular, at the women of these minorities. The behavior of ISIS is barbaric and inhuman. ISIS does not value basic human rights, such as the right to live, if the populations who live in territories…..