How can I lightheartedly clack out “Good Morning” like I usually do after watching this video in the Times about a 14-year old girl named Malala Yousafzai who was shot in the head by the Taliban because she publicly championed education for girls. The video opens with these words, In the area where I live, there are some people…who want to stop educating girls…through guns!

I want to get my education, and I want to become a doctor.  But now it’s entirely unclear whether Malala will ever see her dream come true.  She was shot with two other girls on a school bus, after which, Ehsanullah Ehsana, a representative for the Taliban confirmed by phone Tuesday that Ms. Yousafzai had been the target, calling her crusade for education rights an “obscenity.” She has become a symbol of Western culture in the area; she was openly propagating it,” Mr. Ehsan said, adding that if she survived, the militants would certainly try to kill her again. “Let this be a lesson.” – The NY Times

This is superb reporting of a compelling story.  I could never improve on it.  I can only ask that you try to take the time to read the story and watch this clip of Class Dismissed, A 2009 documentary by Adam B. Ellick that profiled the young, visionary and ferociously courageous Malala Yousafzai.

All the way around the world as we are, it is not only unfathomable to us that brutality like this goes on, as we get up, begin our days, have our coffee, take our dogs for walks, check our email, wish a friend happy birthday, plan what’s for dinner and who’s coming for Thanksgiving and go about our days in freedom.

But there are people – there are women – in other parts of the world who do not have these simple freedoms let alone the greater ones, such as an opportunity to get an education.  Sentiments such as “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” and “Dream a Little Dream Come True” don’t exist for our sisters who live under the rule of extremist regimes like the Taliban.  If you speak out, you lose your life.

It’s important to remember that when we fight to preserve women’s rights here in the States – in a democracy – that we fight not only to preserve our own freedoms, but we fight to encourage freedom for all women all over the world.  It is not just about us.  It never is.

We may be far, far away…but we are all connected in spirit and paying attention matters.

To Malala Yousafzai – a prayer for your recovery. You are extraordinary.

Thanks for reading everyone.