As this newsletter was being prepared, news of the horrific attack by Hamas upon Israel broke. Before I go on, then, I want to say that I strongly condemn the brutal acts of terror committed by Hamas. My heart goes out to the victims and their families. We all must unite behind Israel. The West must stay unified against the threat of Islamism. Only by being unified can we fight for and protect human rights, freedom, and peace for all. You can read more of my thoughts on this crisis in UnHerd here.
Today is the International Day of the Girl Child, which makes it fitting that I have some wonderful news to share with you: last month, the Governor of Michigan signed a bill package banning child marriage in her state! AHA Foundation and its allies worked hard for this victory, but ultimately your support enabled that work. Thank you. You can find out more about this victory here.
Today is also an appropriate time to reflect on efforts to eradicate the abusive practice of female genital mutilation (FGM). In our blog this month, you can read FGM survivor, activist, and model Raha Europ’s story. I feel inspired seeing women who have been through such pain rising up for justice so that no other girls will have to experience what they did. Read Raha’s story here.
I also want to let you know that AHA Foundation will very soon be publishing a groundbreaking new report on the prevalence and impact of FGM in the U.S. Funded by AHA Foundation, Sean Callaghan has provided vital new understanding of FGM in the U.S. and we hope that the study will be a valuable tool for all those who want to join the fight against FGM. Keep an eye out!
And, in more good news, AHA Foundation, in a new partnership with the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, launched a new online anti-FGM training course in September which, in a little over 2 weeks after launch, was completed by 128 professionals! View the training here.
Meanwhile, we have recently updated our Zero Tolerance for FGM page. Read it here to find out if your state still hasn’t taken enough action against FGM and how you can push your legislators to do so.
In other news, the third webinar in The Ayaan Hirsi Ali Dialogues series, in which I will speak with free speech champion Greg Lukianoff about cancel culture and how to stand up to it, has been rescheduled. It takes place tomorrow at 12 p.m. EDT! There is still time to register for it here.
And just a few days later, on October 17 at 10:30 a.m. EDT, I will be talking to the gender-critical philosopher Kathleen Stock, who was canceled from her job at the University of Sussex in the UK for her views, about how to uphold free speech and fight back against cancel culture in the gender debate. Register and send in your questions here. Find out more about the webinar series, including recordings of past webinars, here.
Finally, I will be participating in a webinar on November 7 with our campus program fellow from the University of Central Florida, Hanna Nour, where I will answer questions from Hanna and her fellow students. I can’t wait to talk to—and learn from—these inquiring young minds, the next generation of free thinkers. Keep an eye out for registration details soon.
Thanks again for all you do,
Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Founder