Episode for November 11, 2020
Wajahat Ali is a New York Times Contributing Op-Ed writer, public speaker, recovering attorney and tired dad of two cute kids. He believes in sharing stories that are by us, for everyone: universal narratives told through a culturally specific lens to entertain, educate and bridge the global divides.
He frequently appears on television and podcasts for his brilliant, incisive, and witty political commentary. (That’s what his mom says anyway). Born in the Bay Area, California to Pakistani immigrant parents, Ali went to school wearing Husky pants and knowing only three words of English. He graduated from UC Berkeley with an English major and became a licensed attorney. He knows what it feels like to be the token minority in the classroom and the darkest person in a boardroom. Like Spiderman, he’s often had the power and responsibility of being the cultural ambassador of an entire group of people, those who are often marginalized, silenced, or reduced to stereotypes. His essays, interviews, and reporting have appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, The Guardian, and New York Review of Books. Ali has spoken at many organizations, from Google to Walmart-Jet to the Princeton University to the United Nations to the Chandni Indian-Pakistani Restaurant in Newark, California, and his living room in front of his two kids.
Paul Rieckhoff is an American writer, social entrepreneur, advocate, activist and veteran of the United States Army and the Iraq War. He is the President of Righteous Media Inc and the host of the Angry Americans podcast. Prior to that, he was the founder, CEO and executive director of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA),a non-partisan non-profit founded in 2004 with tens of thousands of members in all 50 US states. IAVA is America’s first and largest Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans group. He served as an army first lieutenant and infantry rifle platoon leader in Iraq from 2003 through 2004.
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