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Their booth says 'Ask a Muslim,' but it's not religion they want to talk about.

After the success of their "Ask a Muslim" booth, Mona Haydar and Sebastian Robins reflect.

Their booth says 'Ask a Muslim,' but it's not religion they want to talk about.

It's a scary time to be a Muslim in America. Mona Haydar would know.

She set up an "Ask a Muslim" display outside a Cambridge, Massachusetts, library last year. Coming shortly after the San Bernardino attacks, Mona's stand made national and even international news for offering a unique way of humanizing and softening people's preconceived notions about what it means to be Muslim.



At the time, attacks against mosques and Muslim Americans had spiked. It's the result of what Mona describes as "collective guilt."

It's a double standard too often applied to Muslims — think about all the times you've heard demands that the Muslim community condemn terrorist attacks and how few calls you hear for other groups to do the same. For example, if a white, Christian man commits an act of terror, it's rare to hear calls for a ban on white Christians or demands that the pope or other prominent white or Christian leaders issue a statement condemning the attack.

That's why Sebastian, Mona's husband, was scared.

The pushback against Muslims caused Sebastian to rethink his own safety in the world and how much harder it must be for people like Mona, who are visibly identifiable as being "different."

It was an eye-opening experience for him in understanding his own privilege.

To counter the misconceptions about Muslims, the couple set out to have conversations with anyone who would listen about anything they'd like to talk about.

Mona notes that the sign's open-ended premise of "Ask a Muslim" was intentional. It wasn't "Ask a Muslim about Islam" but rather an invitation to talk about whatever.

"Ask us about the Red Sox," she jokes.

In a just and fair world, an act like theirs wouldn't be seen as remarkable. In the current climate, it certainly is.

Sebastian sums it up perfectly.

Watch the Upworthy Original Video about Mona and Sebastian below:

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A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

Watch the full story:

Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.

Acts of kindness and compassion are always inspiring. A veterinarian gave a different spin on the phrase "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em".

The poor little pup in this video walked into this shelter with a history of being abused. He was so traumatized that he wasn't eating. The vet treating him wasn't sure what to do, so he decided to book a table for two: a the dog's place. It is not clear whether he got an official invite from the canine in question, but he felt pretty safe about showing up unannounced. He walked into the cage and sat down next to the dog. With his back up against the corner of his new (and hopefully temporary) domain, the rescue stared apprehensively at his human guest. The vet presented a dog dish with food and put it in front of the dog. The frightened pup just looked at the dish and made no attempt to eat. Then he broke out another dog dish identical to the one he just gave to his four-legged patient and started eating out of that bowl. And then came the turning point.


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True

A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

Watch the full story:

Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.
via James Austin Johnson / Instagram

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