On September 13th I was crossing 14th Street in New York City. The street was guarded by police. At the center o f this crowd were former President Clinton and his daughter Chelsea. It was totally unbelievable to me that they would be there. At one point a woman from Pakistan talked to Clinton. After that he turned to the crowd and said, "Listen, people, I have something to say to you. This woman has been maligned, she's very sad. We can have no more of that - we' re all the same, we're all immigrants and we don't have the time or the energy for that kind of abuse. That must stop." The crowd was yelling, "Right on, Bill."
Two days later I went to an emergency meeting with media representatives of the South Asian Journalists Association, of which I am a member. In a question and answer session I raised my hand and I told about the incident with Clinton. A woman popped up in the audience and said, "That was me." After the meeting I talked to her and she asked me to come to Brooklyn the next day for a vigil started by the Arab Women's Association. Then she came to Riverside Church that night to hear Thich Nhat Hanh. I introduced her to Sister Annabel. She's from Pakistan and is very concerned about her family that is stiII over there.
Photos and story by Nancy Rudolf, True Gathering of Peace