conflict

10: BRIE LOSKOTA | We Decided to be Builders

The immediate years after 9/11 were profoundly challenging for American Muslims, who struggled to find their voice while being targeted for suspicion by law enforcement, media and the public alike. Meanwhile, their community institutions were in their foundational stages and largely unconnected. That pressure cooker environment is part of what sparked a groundbreaking and transformative program to support the emerging leaders of the American Muslim community — the American Muslim Civic Leadership Institute (AMCLI).

As Executive Director of the USC Center for Religion & Civic Culture, BRIE LOSKOTA‘s work and research focus on how religions change and make change in the world.  She is also co-founder and senior advisor to AMCLI and a trainer-facilitator with the United States Institute of Peace’s Generation Change program, where she has trained young leaders from across the Middle East, Africa, South America and Southeast Asia in leadership capacity and conflict management while also fostering a vibrant network among them.

Brie also works with local, state and federal government agencies to ensure more effective partnership with faith communities on issues including public health, mental health and disasters.

In this episode, Edina and Brie talk about the origins of AMCLI, Brie’s roots in Southern California, what she’s learned from more than a decade of training emerging leaders around the world, what it means to be a good ally, and how to leverage difference for new possibilities.

Links to Brie’s work and projects mentioned in this episode:

9: GLENETTA POPE | Moms Against Guns

Every day, 96 Americans are shot and killed and for every one person killed with a gun, two more are injured. More children have been killed by guns since the Sandy Hook school shooting in 2012 than U.S. soldiers in combat since 9/11.

In this episode, Edina talks to another mom who has had direct experience with gun violence.

After a decades long career in education, GLENETTA TURNER POPE got sick of the violence and fear, and she chose to do something about it by joining Sandy Hook Promise, where for nearly two years she trained and deployed trainers across over 70 Los Angeles public schools to conduct student assemblies about Knowing the Signs that a classmate is in crisis and preventing gun violence.

Glenetta shares her transformational journey through education, her own experience of losing a loved one from gun violence, and what we can do as moms and leaders to get real change to happen now.

Glenetta is a single mom of four who grew up in East Oakland, and has truly used education to transform her life and the lives of young scholars she has worked closely with over the past 20 years. She is a product of Oakland Public Schools, UC Berkeley, Harvard Graduate School of Education, and Cal State Dominguez Hills School of Education.

She has lived and worked in Southern California since 1995.  She is currently taking care of her children, writing a book and working as an Educational Consultant. You can follow her blog at www.justglenetta.weebly.com.

8: MANAR WAHEED | People, Power & People Power

MANAR WAHEED has spent her adult life fighting for the most vulnerable among us – survivors of violence, immigrants, Muslims, undocumented Americans, and now she’s fighting for ALL of us.

As Legislative & Advocacy Counsel of ACLU National, Manar is literally on the front lines of challenging Donald Trump’s ongoing destruction of our federal government, and Constitutional rights and protections. Her journey is one focused on protecting people, building power and harnessing people power to meet this moment.

In this conversation, Manar shares some incredible stories and powerful learnings from her time:

  • growing up in Texarkana, TX as the child of immigrants who came from humble beginnings in Pakistan
  • working with domestic violence survivors through undergrad, law school, and the beginning of her legal career
  • advocating with the government and in local communities for the rights of South Asians in America in the aftermath of 9/11
  • serving in the Obama White House Domestic Policy Council where she helped develop and implement President Obama’s executive actions on immigration and helped dismantle a national Muslim registry program created after 9/11
  • joining the de facto leader of the resistance to the Trump administration, the ACLU

Since election day, the ACLU has been mounting some of the most prominent legal challenges to the Trump administration. They’re fighting hard on more than 60 critical issues threatening fundamental rights, and they’ve scored a string of major victories.

For 98 years, the ACLU has defended our Constitution in the courts. Now, they’re coupling that legal power with People Power — and taking their fight to the streets with grassroots action to resist the Trump administration’s assault on our communities.

Links to stuff we mentioned in this episode:

4: REV. GARY MASON | Amnesia is the Enemy of Reconciliation

For the latest episode, Edina speaks with a peacemaker who became one of the key “persuaders” in the Northern Ireland conflict, leveraging his faith and relationships to bring armed fighters to the table with politicians, where they were ultimately able to create the historic Belfast Agreement that officially ended the conflict.

Rev. Mason and the Queen of England.

Since getting ordained in his early 30s, REV. GARY MASON was stationed in a Belfast Methodist church which butted up against a “peace wall” put there by the government to keep the peace between Protestants and Catholics.

In their conversation, Gary shares moving stories about his choice to act on his faith by engaging all sides of the conflict sincerely and with compassion, both during the conflict and from two decades of active peace building and community healing he’s pioneered since it stopped. 

They explore his path to becoming a “persuader” and the complex questions about life after conflict he’s faced:

  • Once the violence stops and all parties have committed to peace, how can survivors be supported in healing?
  • Why is it worse to forget than to remember the trauma of the conflict? What are they supposed to do with their memories?
  • Can former enemies and their offspring transform their understanding
    of each other and move forward together?
  • How do the lessons of Northern Ireland apply to our current
    American “Troubles”?

Rev. Mason at the Belfast Mission.

More about Gary & his decades of trailblazing work in community transformation: