Trump’s flag-burning tweet ‘troubling’ for its First Amendment ignorance

The New England First Amendment Coalition is deeply troubled by President-Elect Donald Trump’s recent statement calling for the imprisonment or loss of citizenship of those who burn the American flag. While Trump’s comments may reflect the feelings of many citizens, they perpetuate a dangerous misunderstanding about the breadth of the First Amendment and the protection it provides all Americans.

Men, ‘if our daughters and sisters need protection, it is from us’

Since the election over two weeks ago, the nation’s opinion pages have been alive with articles written in despair, often from men lamenting what it all means for their daughters. Slate and The Guardian weighed in, and no less than The New Yorker had a piece on how to handle the news. The screenwriter Aaron Sorkin penned a widely-shared article in which he predicted Trump would commit “an impeachable crime” within the year.

Westport Dems: No place here for xenophobia, misogyny, and intolerance

Since Election Day, the Westport Democratic Town Committee has heard from many people in our community who are struggling to reconcile themselves to this [presidential] result and what it means for our nation. Tuesday night, a week after Election Day, we had a record turnout at our monthly meeting. People who had never attended a DTC meeting before came to express their fear, their anger, and their worry about the future. They spoke of sleepless nights, of difficult conversations with their children, and of feeling like foreigners in their own country.
In the past week, incidents of racial intimidation and hate speech have sharply risen all around the nation. Sadly, our town has not been immune.

The real war on women in Connecticut

Donald Trump’s atrocious war on women has been on full display, but there’s another war on women that takes place inside our Capitol every legislative session. Big business lobbyists, and the Republicans they now indirectly fund, routinely fight the right of women to achieve equal pay and fair workplace policies that keep women in the workforce.

‘Revolution’ talk serious, from Shays’ Rebellion to today

Disparaging the U.S. government and election system, with menacing warnings and occasionally occupation and weaponry, is in season…. Would-be rebels and gun zealots revive one reason the U.S. Constitution was created: to counter conflicts like Shays’ Rebellion, when Massachusetts farmers burdened by debt took up arms against the Commonwealth in 1786–87.

Politics in 2016: The unthinkable can happen here

On Oct. 27, 1936, Connecticut theater-goers watched It Can’t Happen Here, performed by the Federal Theater Project, one of the New Deal’s progressive jobs programs. The Nobel prize winner Sinclair Lewis had refashioned his dystopian novel into a dramatic play. It premiered simultaneously in 21 cities across the country, including Hartford and Bridgeport. Americans in the 1930s were being groomed to accept fascism as a macho solution to the troubles faced by the United States. Lewis’s It Can’t Happen Here was a roadblock to that disturbing movement.

Disability and invisibility in Connecticut

I was in the park, enjoying the roses when a good-looking man said to me, “I’m an orthopedist. I’ve taken care of your type of people. I know what wrong with you.”

No, he didn’t.

I’m often short tempered, a procrastinator and not detail oriented. I’ve bombed out writing poetry and can’t seem to learn how to structure a novel. These are real flaws. Athetoid cerebral palsy, though, is just a physical difference. In a world free from prejudice, the issues it creates would only be logistical – how to get from here to there, how to pour without spilling, how to make yourself understood by strangers when you’re nervous.

The casual comment made me feel the invisibility that disability rights advocate Anastasia Somozo would later refer to at the Democratic National Convention.

It shouldn’t take a viral video to secure justice

This week, jaw-dropping footage of three Connecticut state police officers appearing to fabricate criminal charges against a protester made international news. Meanwhile, two families lost loved ones to police violence in Oklahoma and North Carolina. Each of these incidents was caught on video. All have inspired outrage from people around the world. It still might not be enough to ensure justice—and that should frighten all of us.

Is this justice for Aymir Holland?

Nearly all of the ways that the judicial system serves justice are unfair, and it is the poor, underprivileged citizens who are suffering.
According to, “African Americans now constitute nearly 1 million of the total 2.3 million people incarcerated population. African Americans are incarcerated at nearly six times the rate of whites.” Seeing those statistics, I can’t help assume that the justice system seems to have a bias that black people are all the same: that they’re all agitators of civilization. This bias isn’t the truth and is displayed by many African Americans including 17-year-old Aymir Holland.

Gag me with Calhoun

After weeks of embarrassing publicity and political mobilization, Yale University has been forced to rehire Corey Menafee, an African American employee who was fired for smashing a stained glass window at Yale’s Calhoun College that depicted slaves shouldering bales of cotton. For over a year, Calhoun College has been the subject of intense national controversy because it is named after one of America’s foremost defenders of slavery and white supremacy. Menafee’s actions, firing, and now rehiring gave expression, and amplification, to the controversy. But now there’s a new source of controversy…

CT Muslims and ex-Islamophobe unite to counter extremism

Our new brothers Dr. Jeffrey Cohen and Ted Hakey Jr., a former marine, are thrilled to join this year’s Jalsa Salana USA alongside myself, Dr. ​Mohammed ​Qureshi, our families, and the entire Ahmadiyya Muslim Community CT from Baitul Aman “House of Peace” Mosque in Meriden. In a world exuding hatred, strife, and bloodshed, we sorely look forward to being a part of another moving demonstration “love for all, hatred for none,” and hope to bring that promising remedy to the rest of Connecticut.