Justin, with love.

Jul 09, 2019 by SOFIA ALI-KHAN
One summer, when I was 19 or so, I drove out to the Gateway Ranch, which sits on the edge of the Navajo reservation, near Flagstaff. Intended to be a place of environmental sustainability and responsible, respectful cultural exchange, it is the home of a former AIM activist, who had been invited to be principal of the reservation's first native-run school. I went with my friend Jenn, taking turns driving her Toyota eight hours out of the subtropics of South Florida, where we were at New College, and then nearly 3,000 miles across the Deep South, and Texas, a country all its own, and finally, into the dusty southwest.

That summer, I met a man named Justin. He was Navajo, and...

Faith and Charlie Horses

Jun 21, 2019 by SOFIA ALI-KHAN
It's hard to explain faith. Someone--an acquaintance from college--recently wrote that they were doing me a kindness by not considering me evangelical and writing me off. The truth is, I don't mind being written off. But I am concerned about being considered evangelical. Because I'm plenty busy with keeping myself in line without getting involved with what anyone else is doing. (Unless those someone elses are trying to devastate large parts of humanity. Then I get upset and noisy.) I can't tell you exactly why I'm a person of faith. What I can tell you is that it has little to do with identity politics, or what I was born into, although those things are real and provide context. It's a million lonely...

The Sound of Music and Partition and How Normal Everything Can Be Made to Seem

Jun 04, 2017 by SOFIA ALI-KHAN
One of my favorite films growing up was the Sound of Music. I know, I know--but one of the scenes I found most confusing was towards the end, where the VonTrapps go perform in a show in a big theater just before fleeing the Nazi regime. I thought surely, in times such as those, no one would be performing in theaters and doing things that seemed at once so normal and so frivolous.

It turns out that this is a dangerous misunderstanding of how things work. Right now, American democracy is under serious attack and the federal government is being actively starved and narrowed to increasingly autocratic and erratic rule.

And yet, life goes on. We are, inevitably, preoccupied with the...

What's Headed for You

Mar 16, 2017 by SOFIA ALI-KHAN
I'd like to point out that we've crossed well over the line into President Bannon's vision for destabilizing America. (If you don't know what I'm talking about, just google the key words from that sentence all together.) This isn't about racism or bigotry or misogyny. Or at least, not just those things.

The Executive Order and budget proposal calling for agencies to kill entire departments? I’d put my money on every Office of Civil Rights across the executive branch. But beyond that, these agencies govern every service and protection that ordinary Americans—every last one of the 99%--rely on every day. Schools, hospitals, roads, food: all of them are envisioned, researched, organized, funded and regulated by the executive agencies. This is a war...

Didactic Syncast: Interviewed by Eric Piotrowski

Nov 28, 2016 by SOFIA ALI-KHAN
I spoke to my long-time friend and podcaster, Eric Piotrowski about our lives since college, activism, and the election.  Interview starts at about 17 minutes in.  Have a listen here.


What Won't She Sell Out? The Opportunism of Asra Nomani

Nov 28, 2016 by SOFIA ALI-KHAN
"...For some reason, Nomani has chosen this moment to stop walking that thin line, unapologetically aligning herself with President-elect Donald Trump. In this article, she lists her nonsensical reasons for supporting Trump: Obamacare and the president’s loan modification program, “HOPE NOW,” didn’t help her. Rural Americans in her hometown of Morgantown, WV are still struggling to make ends meet.

Nomani does not link a single one of these factors to any credible plan or promise Trump has to resolve these issues. That’s probably because there aren’t any such arguments to be made..." Read More

Anti-Muslim Extremists: The SPLC's Field Guide

Nov 28, 2016 by SOFIA ALI-KHAN
"...You may remember SPLC’s astounding report, The Trump Effect: The Impact of the Presidential Campaign on Our Nations Schools. It provided the results of an online survey that found widespread anxiety in and increased harassment of Muslim students and other students of color. The report is an important tool for parents, educators, and activists who are on the front lines, arguing that the changes in their children’s school environments must be met with proactive anti-hate messaging, diversity training, and Islam education and awareness.

SPLC has just released their Field Guide to Anti-Muslim Extremists, which profiles 15 prominent anti-Muslim extremists....Read More