Archive for the 'Big White Hat Awards' Category

Emilio gets a Big White Hat award.

Tuesday, September 12th, 2006

I was driving up the George Bush Turnpike. Mark Levin was on the radio keeping me company. He told me about a fella and his op-ed. I was floored.

I don’t know the first thing about Emilio Karim Dabul. But today he gets a Big White Hat award. You see I have had conversations with Muslims I know. They have quite a bit to say about Islamo-facism but won’t dare let their opinions be widely known. Emilio cowboyed up and put his in the New York Post. Check it out.

September 12, 2006 — WELL, here it is, five years late, but here just the same: an apology from an Arab-American for 9/11. No, I didn’t help organize the killers or contribute in any way to their terrible cause. However, I was one of millions of Arab-Americans who did the unspeakable on 9/11: nothing.The only time I raised my voice in protest against these men who killed thousands of innocents in the name of Allah was behind closed doors, among the safety of friends and family. I did at one point write a very vitriolic essay condemning their actions, but fear of becoming another Salman Rushdie kept me from ever trying to publish it.

Well, I’m sick of saying the truth only in private - that Arabs around the world, including Arab-Americans like myself, need to start holding our own culture accountable for the insane, violent actions that our extremists have perpetrated on the world at large.

Yes, our extremists and our culture.

Every single 9/11 hijacker was Arab and a Muslim. The apologists (including President Bush) tried to reassure us that 9/11 had nothing to do with Islam, but was a twisting of a great and noble religion. With all due respect, read the Koran, Mr. President. There’s enough there for someone of extreme tendencies to find their way to a global jihad.

There’s also enough there for someone of a different mindset to find a path to enlightenment and peace. Still, Rushdie had it right back in 2001: This does have to do with Islam. A Christian who bombs an abortion clinic in the name of God is still a Christian, at least in his interpretation, and saying otherwise doesn’t negate the fact that he has spent a goodly amount of time figuring out his version of the one true and right thing to do.

The men who killed 3,000 of our citizens on 9/11 in all likelihood died saying prayers to Allah, and that by itself is one of the most horrific things to me about that day.

And, while my grandparents never waged a jihad, their attitudes toward Jews weren’t that much different than Mohammed Atta’s. No, they didn’t support the Holocaust, but they did believe that Jews were trouble in many different ways, and those sorts of beliefs were passed on to me before I’d ever actually met a Jew.

I’m sorry for that, for ever believing that anything that my grandparents or other relatives had to say about Jews or Israel, for that matter, had any real resemblance to truth. It took me years to realize that I’d been conned into believing the generalizations and stereotypes that millions around the Arab world buy into: that Jews, America and Israel are our main problem.

One look at the average Arab regime should alert us to the fact that the problem, dear Achmed, lies not overseas or next door in Tel Aviv, but in the brutal, corrupt despots that we have bred from country to country in the Mideast, across the span of history. That history and its corresponding economic devastation is the main reason I reside on New York City’s West Bank - New Jersey - not the one near Jerusalem. On my worst day, I’m happy about that fact. I’d rather be here than there, and experience the freedom and boundless opportunities that were mostly unknown to so many generations of my family in the Mideast.

For as long as I live, the image of those towers falling, as I watched in horror and disbelief from the corner of 40th and Fifth, will be for me my Pearl Harbor, for in that instant I recognized that not only was our city under attack - so was our freedom.

It still is. And will continue to be for years to come. And the threat is not from within, but from Islamic fascists who desperately want to destroy the freedom and opportunities that millions the world over still seek.

Five years after that awful day, it’s time for all Arab-Americans, and Arabs around the world, to protest against Islamic fascism, to raise our voices - and, where necessary, our arms - against these tyrants until their plague of terror has been driven from the face of the earth forever.

Man Alive! That took brass.

The Big White Hat award just aint good Enough.

Saturday, April 8th, 2006

Captain Chontosh

This is Brian Chontosh. I am in the habit of offering the big white hat award to people of upstanding character. But when it comes to Valor, I don’t have anything good enough to offer. I could not even begin to honor this Marine.

In the attached story, Brian is a First Lieutenant. As you can see from the bars on his collar, that has been remedied. The Medal he is wearing is The Navy Cross. I can’t think of anything more fitting to recognize his accomplishments.

So please read Brian’s story.

I tip the Big White Hat to Beth.


Jason Finally Gets His Big White Hat Award

Monday, March 20th, 2006

I have been emailed countless times regarding Jason McElwain. Some of the emails come from other parents with autistic children. Some come from folks that don’t have autistic children but know that my Tiger is autistic. Some have come from folks that just loved the story and have no idea that I have an autistic child.

Many of you have asked what I think about this boy and what he did. I have been reluctant to post about it because of my mixed emotions. Revka posted about him and his meeting with the president. Because of our autistic children Revka has a special relationship with Echo and me. She did a fantastic job on that post.

I have mixed emotions because this boy did something special but there is too much pity tied up in the story. The main reason this affected so many is that pity. Pity is natural and I have learned not to resent it. After young Jason met with the president I realized how I shouldn’t worry about that pity. I shouldn’t worry about it because this young man’s actions fly in the face of that pity.

First the coach let Jason play out of pity. He wouldn’t have done it if it were not the last chance Jason had to play and the fact that the team had a very comfortable lead. Jason answered that pity with a 20 point demonstration of how he should not be underestimated.

I think Jason’s autism helped him in that game. If it weren’t for the real effort he put into learning to talk, he would not have the confidence he needed to shoot 6-3 point shots. If it weren’t for the difficulties he has behaving in a way that is unnatural to him to assimilate with all of us neurotypical folks, he would not have overcome his height disadvantage in that game.

Jason is an admirable young man. I admire his attitude. I would still admire his attitude autism or no autism. I admire his shooting skills and his ability to get open and shoot quickly.

I would never expect Jason to compete daily with most high school basketball players. He is too short to do that without Spud Webb talent. I do however expect him to have a happy productive life that contributes richly to our world. All of us have our place in this world. Jason has the mettle and determination to find his. I won’t dare underestimate him.

I think Jason meeting with President Bush is poetic. Both of them are underestimated all the time. That doesn’t bother either of them. Jason’s accomplishments are a testimony to his unrecognized ability. It moved me to see him with the fella that coined the phrase, “…soft bigotry of low expectations.”

So yes indeed Jason gets a Big White Hat award. Not because he is autistic. Not because he made the news. Not because played so well. He gets it because he is going to continue to manage the team in the post season. He is not eligible to play in the post season because he was underestimated during the season. He was underestimated by everybody maybe even himself. But his attitude keeps him from being angry about that. He just wants to help his team win. He will act like that all of his life. And that will get many a job done. I want him on my team. I wish I were more like him.

Time for a Big White Hat Award

Sunday, February 26th, 2006

This one is long over due. When a person moves to Texas they need to spruce up a little. Ted Nugent is now a Lone Star Treasure. Texas is glad to have him. Though his signature camo cowboy hat looks good, here is a Big White for him. He deserves it.

This man goes on safari in Africa and stops to teach local tribal people how to hunt so that they don’t have to starve. He uses his celebrity and his personality to preach against drug abuse. He reminds hunters that conservation is our God given duty. He entertains our warriors by doing USO shows.

I also respect him for doing what he loves. He turned playing a Gibson Birdland into a multi million dollar business. It seems he has always done what he loves. What a fantastic character.

Sam Johnson gets a BigWhiteHat Award

Friday, December 9th, 2005

I don’t have the time to devote to a great post on this. That does not matter because my buddy Beast7 did a terrific job with a speech transcript. Please go read it when your done here.

I’m breaking my own rules here. I’m giving away my location and going political. Don’t get used to it.

My congressman is Sam Johnson. He is a war hero and former POW. When John McCain is casting his honor to the wind, his former cell mate Sam Johnson is showing us what a real hero is made of. Too many former heros like Murtha and Kerry are selling their souls and selling out our warriors. Sam Johnson shows real support for our armed forces. Hats off and high in the air for a true Texan.

Jabbar gets a Big White Hat Award

Saturday, September 3rd, 2005

Jabbar Gibson. That is his name. He is the one we have all heard about.

Jabbar is a 20 year old with better head on his shoulders than most. This young man commandeered a school bus, drove it around his New Orleans neighborhood and drove his neighbors to safety.

When all around is madness, I thank God for folks like Jabbar. He has presence of mind and bravery. He may only be 20. He may wear stupid pants with the crotch at his knees and the belt below the hips. No matter, he is a Real Man with true grit in my book.