The Huffington Post: This Proud Iranian-American Muslim Will Not Hide Or Shut Up

On Sunday, I joined more than a thousand demonstrators at Raleigh-Durham International Airport to oppose an unconstitutional executive order signed by President Donald Trump last week. The order attempts to block refugees from entering the United States for 120 days (or if they’re Syrian, indefinitely) and to prohibit U.S. entry to nationals of seven Muslim-majority countries (Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen) for 90 days.

Read More

BookRiot: A Nonfiction Reading List in Honor of Carrie Fisher (List by Katie MacBride)

There were too many painful losses to count in 2016, and the death of Carrie Fisher was among the most painful for me. I’ve never seen any of the Star Wars movies–-I never got around to it as a kid and now it’s just fun to watch people’s horrified reactions when I tell them I’ve never seen the iconic films. I read her memoir, Wishful Drinking, the year I got sober. I related to Fisher on many levels–-as a recovering alcoholic, as a person who has learned not to be ashamed of her depression, as someone who is really and truly obsessed with her dog, and as a woman who has always found humor in the blunt, the sarcastic, and the inappropriate. So inspired not just by Wishful Drinking but her entire life, here are 10 non-fiction books I think the Great Carrie Fisher, Our Misfit Queen, would appreciate.

Read More

The Huffington Post: Taking Post-Election Comfort From An Unexpected Place

Today more than ever, love is in order. As an Iranian-American Muslim woman of color living with a disability, I grieve for our country given the results of the latest presidential election. I was born in the United States. I love this nation. I have studied its laws and its flaws. As an author, attorney and activist, I have fought with my words and actions to make it a better place. But only recently have I come to realize that fighting isn’t enough. Love is in order.

Read More

Bipolar [bp] Magazine: Maria Bamford Turns Bipolar into Funny Business

I’ve been a loyal fan of comic Maria Bamford’s ever since watching her ingeniously frank and vulnerable web series The Maria Bamford Show. In it, she highlights her personal struggles with depression and anxiety while acting as herself and a panoply of other characters—including members of her quirky Midwestern family, who feature prominently in much of her comedy.

Read More

The Huffington Post: 5 Tips For My Fellow Muslims

Muslims are increasingly under attack—both from within and without, both domestically and globally. We are being slaughtered by those claiming to be Muslim but ignoring the most basic tenets of our faith, those forgetting the meaning of the words with which we begin every single prayer—calling on a most “compassionate” and “merciful” God. On the other hand, we are also being slaughtered by those duped into believing that these vicious so-called Muslims (who have dismissed and disgraced our faith by claiming it, building organizations they insist on calling “Islamic”) represent all Muslims.

Read More

Think Piece: Interview by Adam Wahlberg

Melody Moezzi was born in Chicago but considers herself equally Iranian as American. Her parents emigrated to the United States after the 1979 Islamic Revolution. And while Moezzi was raised here and has made a life here, earning a law degree and building a career as an author and social commentator, her heart and thoughts are never far from Persia. This is evident when you read her beautiful memoir Haldol and Hyacinths: A Bipolar Life. What makes her book so original and valuable is how she examines cultural thinking about mental illness in both parts of the world. As she writes about her Iranian heritage, “My people don’t do psychotherapy. It just isn’t our style.” But it’s her style now. The story of how she got there is remarkable. We spoke with Moezzi recently about her book, her life now, and how the past keeps revisiting us, in big ways and small, whether we want it to or not.

Read More

Ms. Magazine: The U.S. Has a Lot of Work to Do in the Wake of the Orlando Shooting

Before we even knew how many innocent lives were lost in the massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando on Sunday, many were already rushing to lay blame. Media commentators, politicians and bystanders alike speculated out loud. Anyone who could do something like this, many agreed, couldn’t be one of us. Our kind could never be capable of such inhumanity. It must be a Muslim, a maniac, an immigrant, an other. And while the gunman claimed to be Muslim, and according to an ex-wife at least, appeared to have had bipolar disorder—he was also an American, born and raised.

Read More

The Huffington Post: Ten Things White People Need To Quit Saying

While I’ve never been especially fond of political correctness for its own sake, I’ve encountered enough well-meaning white people embarrassing themselves to know that a brief tutorial can’t hurt. For those who insist that they could never say anything racist because they are not racists, I present a quick reminder: Just because you didn’t intend for something to sound racist, doesn’t mean it isn’t, and just because you don’t think you’re a racist, doesn’t mean you’re not. I refer you to the Washington Redskins and every idiot who insists that Native Americans should be “honored” to be so warmly insulted. Newsflash: Determining whether this team’s name is racist is not up to anyone but Native Americans. If you are not Native American, your opinion on the issue is at best irrelevant. I know it’s hard for some to accept, but white people don’t get to determine what is and isn’t racist.

Read More

The Huffington Post: Brief Encounters of the Muslim Kind

Last week, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of Raja’ee Fatihah, a Muslim-American Army reservist who was denied service at an Oktaha gun range based solely on his religion. According to the lawsuit, the Save Yourself Survival and Tactical Gun Range had posted a sign that read:

Read More

The Huffington Post: Bad Muslim?

I don’t speak Arabic. I rarely pray more than once a day. I don’t cover my hair. I curse. I sing. I dance. I paint my nails. I sport spaghetti straps. I love dogs. And if pork and alcohol didn’t smell so nasty to me, I’d have no trouble consuming either.

Read More