Sala'am Means Peace
Highland students meet their Muslim neighbors
The shy girls at the Salaam Academy trickled into the room one by one, eyes only briefly glancing up from the floor to take in the table full of strangers, heads uncovered, there to greet them. It was Friday, the Islamic Sabbath, and the girls wore their best clothes to school. Brocaded lavender dresses, cream-colored silken hijabs and black chadors trimmed with gold wrapped the young girls in an elegance and modesty fit for the afternoon's prayer services.
Why so angry? Bill Maher weighed in on the debate over Mary Cheney's lesbian lifestyle with words, perhaps, many Americans might find comforting. On his HBO show “Real Time with Bill Maher” last Friday, Maher said: “But my question about that whole flap, that the Republicans are very angry. Dick Cheney said, ’I'm an angry father.' If it's not shameful to be gay, why are their panties in a bunch about this? I mean, they talk about her like she's some retarded monster they have chained in the attic, you know.... And it is an issue. (Bush and Cheney) made it an issue. It's an issue in this election. Don't talk about my daughter who we are trying to discriminate against in a constitutional amendment.”
Your friends at the Alibi editorial office love to vote. Try it and you will to. In fact, early voting has already begun and between now and election day you can walk into the County Clerk's office on the sixth floor of Civic Plaza (call 768-4085 for hours) or you can log onto www.bernco.gov to locate an early voting location near you. Or, you can go vote on Nov. 2 when polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. But just VOTE!
Bush Wins New Mexico and Four More Years
... and did you hear Cheney has a gay daughter?
This is the Alibi's election issue so let's get the preliminaries out of the way. On Nov. 2, George W. Bush will be re-elected president. The popular vote is going to be close—in the 51 percent range for Bush—but the electoral college won't. Bush will take that with at least 284 electoral votes, although don't be at all surprised if he goes over 300, which is the magic number our oracles are predicting.
Odds & Ends
Dateline: Croatia—An 18-year-old Croatian has been arrested for stealing his father's police uniform and stop sign and using them to collect fines from motorists. The unnamed teen from Bisko stopped drivers and told them they had broken traffic laws and then fined them approximately $15 apiece. He was eventually exposed and arrested when a man on a motorcycle refused to pay the fine and alerted other officers when he became suspicious.
Heather Wilson was the only Congressperson in New Mexico that voted herself a nice pay raise. Both Mr. Udall (D) and Mr. Pearce (R) voted against this bill. It's nice to know that in these troubling times when real average wages are down, bankruptcies are at all time highs and healthcare is unavailable for 400,000 New Mexico citizens, Heather will be taken care of.
Return of the Sandhill Crane Celebration
Diawli: Festival of Lights
Diwali is one of the most popular religious festivals in Hinduism. The festival of lights, as it is also known, occurs during the Hindu Lunisolar month Kartika (basically mid-October to November on the Gregorian calendar) and is generally focused offering on puja to Lakshmi—goddess of wealth and prosperity and wife of Vishnu—but may also include the worship of Durga or Kali, depending on region and denomination. For this year's celebration, the India Association of New Mexico presents Diwali: The Festival of Lights, an evening of dance, music and performing arts amid lamp and candle lighting as adherents perform Lakshmi puja. This sacred event takes place at the National Hispanic Cultural Center's Journal Theater on Saturday, Nov. 16, from 5:30 to 7:30pm. Tickets for this all-ages celebration are available for $10 via the India Association of New Mexico or by calling 306-9624.