...nothing here is promised, not one day... Lin-Manuel Miranda

Malala- and for my mother
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Tomorrow evening I'm taking the bus down to an arena at the University of Washington to attend an appearance/speech/lecture/photo op/I don't care by Yousafzai. On October 9, 2012, she was heading home after taking an exam when the school bus she was riding on was boarded and Malala and two other students Kainat Riaz and Shazia Ramzan were shot.

Malala turned 19 years old on July 12. She won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014, sharing it with Kailash Satyarthi, a champion of childrens' rights.

I was named Andrea Mary Shechter at birth. Jewish tradition often dictates that a new baby isnamed for a recently deceased member of the famly. I never know my father's father, Aaron Shechter, but I was named for him. I tend to be very informal and so I tend to not use my middle name and, in fact, am known as "Andi" to most folks, and not as "Andrea".

On Facebook (maybe elsewhere too) people were using the middle name "Hussein" as a statement of support for Barack Hussein Obama. (I've also seen "Bernie"used.) I don't recall when,but one day I went into my FB settings and added the middle name "Malala". A fifteen year-old girl wanted to read. And people wanted her dead because she wanted and was pursuing an education. I've read practically my whole life (Mom claimed I was reading at 4 years old and I do remember reading in front of my kindergarten class.) Reading is so fundamental to me,so basic, so wonderful and there I was, a white American Jewish female, born into a family that respected and loved reading and books and libraries.

As someone who has lived over 40 years with chronic pain, with a disability that just messes things up big-time, I value reading and learnng, story-telling and sharing of experiences, fantasy voyages and history.. As a woman, trying to remember being 15 years old and thining about luck or whatever that I had what I had, a much easier life (among other things) I was determined to honor this young woman. (I turned 15 in - ready - 1968).

There are many people who I think of as my heroes. I'm very interested in courage and what it takes to fight against hate, speak out for others at great personal risk, people who do amazingly good,fine,and yes brave things (I tend to hate that word). My heroes are seldom 40 plus years younger than I am. She is a definition of courage.

Here's another:

"II wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you’re licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see through it no matter what." Harper Lee

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