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So much trouble in the world...and we are here to talk about it. We wanted to call this our 9/12 show because we wanted to look forward on the day after 9/11. But...
1. Our 9/12 moment
Even though the news of the US embassy attack in Libya sort of screwed up our ability to talk about 9/12 soberly, we still tried with some help from friend of the show and author of Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire, Deepa Kumar.
By the way, on a 9/12 sidenote, our host Subhash Kateel, participated in an interview on the work many, including him, did post-9/11 in South Asian, Arab, Muslim and other New York-based communities. You can see that interview by clicking on the book to the left or here.
2. Libya in our minds (again)
A year or so after the Arab spring engulfed the Middle East and a Western-backed coup toppled Libya's strongman, we turned to discussing the recent tragic killing of U.S. ambassador to Libya, J. Christopher Stevens, as well as the mostly peaceful demonstration in Cairo. Both where allegedly in response to the release of a video most believe to be a hit job (and a really bad one at that) on Islam and a smearing of its revered founding Prophet. We talked about the shady origins of the video, allegedly produced by a "Israeli Jewish businessman" who seems more and more likely to be a Coptic Christian convicted businessman. We were joined by Daniel Tutt, Director of Outreach at Unity Productions Foundation, Ian Black, Middle East editor of the Guardian with additional thoughts from Deepa Kumar. Here is some additional reading that brings up some points that we brought up on the show.
3. Our Teachers in Chicago
Finally, though our bodies may be in Miami our minds are in Chicago with the city’s teachers who went on strike three days ago. We closed out the show by doing what we do talking to actual teachers who are actually striking. Our guests included Maria Rivera, Brett the teacher and Ms. B who discussed the reasons for the strike and dispelled many of the criticisms being made of the teachers and the teacher’s union. The main charges being thrown at the striking teachers is that they are out looking for more money and are hurting children to which Maria responded “Anybody who believes that the teachers are hurting students should walk into a Chicago school and realize that the children are being hurt already.” This sentiment was echoed by Brett who insisted that this strike wasn’t over money but instead about adequate resources and materials for teachers to better take care of the needs of students. Ms. B also told us that her main concern was the lack of respect that Chicago teachers received and how they all work so hard but are still made out to look the bad guy. Hiram Rivera of the Philadelphia Student Union also joined us to tell us about the reactions of students and education advocates in Philadelphia and how it relates to the fight to save public education in the rest of the country.