Tom Garrett

Tom Garrett 27 minutes ago on 697 It's Your Call. Obama talking about Muslims.

Today, President Obama will make his first visit to a mosque in America.

For me, this is personal.

I was born and raised in Maryland, not too far from D.C. Growing up, I liked basketball and art and hanging with my family and friends, just like any other kid.

But after the heinous attacks on 9/11, being a head-covering 8th grader would no longer be the same. There were days when my identity as a Muslim American became a struggle –- I was glared at, cursed and spit at in public and in school. No child should have to endure that, but today, too many Muslim Americans are living a similar tale.

It was the tenets of my faith, the ideals of this country, the encouragement of those around me, and the determination to have my voice heard that carried me through and gave me the courage to pursue public service.

Every day, I walk through the doors of the West Wing and have the privilege of working to protect the country I call home.

Today, I will be in the audience when President Obama addresses our Muslim community at the Islamic Society of Baltimore to talk about our core values as a nation -- about the people we embrace and the bigotry we reject.

I hope you'll tune in today at 12:00 pm ET.

This is an important moment. Unfortunately, the recent political discourse is antithetical to the basic tenants of what America represents. Politicians and pundits are negatively associating millions of Americans with a small fraction of terrorists.

The Muslim Americans who teach our future generations in the classroom, who take care of us in the doctor's offices, who inspire us on and off the field, who protect us on the frontlines of war -- these are the people who have always reminded me proudly, that yes, I am Muslim and American. In this country, I don't have to choose.

Please join me in listening to a president who understands one simple truth:

If you work hard and if you play by the rules, you can make it if you try in America -- no matter who you are or how you pray.

It's how a young girl -- once mocked and called names -- can pursue her dream and proudly serve her country as a head-covering Muslim American woman in the White House.

Thanks for listening,


Rumana Ahmed Advisor at the White House


Tom Garrett 27 minutes ago on 697 It's Your Call. Obama talking about Muslims.


I apologize for missing your question. I got focused on what Charles was saying and wanted very much to explain in detail why I normally would think it is laudable for anyone to tell the truth — namely that people are people, and we as members of this nation, and so the luckiest people on the earth, should all be saying that truth. I wanted to tell Charles how betrayed I feel about the way Barack Obama has acted. It hurts me to vote for someone and find out that I wasted that precious vote. Ah well; maybe I take it too hard, who knows?

Anyway, I can tell you what Obama said because I didn't listen to it. What it was that actually set me off was his misuse of a wonderful letter written by a Muslim member of this nation. If he had just sent out this letter and left out the line that says "Please join me in listening to a president who understands one simple truth," and one other line, I would have had no problem with it. I can feel the yearning for acceptance in the words of that letter, the longing to be part of this nation, the feeling of rejection.

So let me me make up my oversight in not answering your question by quoting the letter itself. Please take note that part of what set me off was the fact that two sentences i this letter were links in the original email.

Here are the two sentences:

I hope you'll tune in today at 12:00 pm ET.

Please join me in listening to a president who understands one simple truth:



Tom Garrett 6 hours, 5 minutes ago on 659 It's Your Call... Casting the first stone?

Like to hear a story? Read this:

  • 1966, an Air Force Base in Ohio.

  • Lolly and I get David off to first grade; off he goes out the back door, down the sidewalk, and into a wide field that separates base housing from base elementary school.

  • I kiss Lolly and drive off, headed for work on other side of base.

  • Lolly, who has been up all night with 18-month-old Francis, who has been running fever all night but is at last better, checks on said kid, who is at last sleeping peacefully in crib.

  • Lolly then plops back on bed for another 40 winks.

Definitely continued......

  • Exactly 2 winks after Lolly lies down front doorbell rings. Lolly, bleary eyed and very tired, answers door.

  • There stand (a) two air policemen, (b) Francis in a very wet and droopy diaper hanging down to knees. One of the AP's, who is smiling from ear to ear, asks Lolly, "is this one yours?"

  • "Yes," she says, totally amazed.


As told by Air Policemen with large grins on faces.

  • Kids are on the way to school across field. Francis, having managed to clamber out of crib and silently sneak downstairs, opens back door and peers out. Seeing cloud of kids headed for stroll, Francis joins parade. At school Francis follows kids down hallway, finally drifting into empty desk in second grade classroom, wetly drooping diaper and all. Kid the class recognizes Francis and offers to tell teacher where strange little kid belongs. Air Police are called. They transport Francis home.

  • Result. Everyone concerned, including Air Police and all other officials, having brains installed, enjoy a good laugh. Lolly tells me story when I get home. We also have good laugh. After much careful thought we eventually realize there is no way to prevent something like that, but small bolt mounted high on each door might at least prevent it until kid %$#@! figures out how to climb that high. We get said bolts and install same, but never have reason to be glad we did since incident never reoccurs.

Comments and/or questions:

  • Is there any doubt in your mind that "the Department of Children and Families" will fall on the father like a ton of bricks?

  • How many people reading that report do you think had a first reaction like, "Oh, my! What kind of parent would allow something like that to happen?" (Said with a sniff of nose.)

  • How do you feel about (a) the Florida incident, (b) "THE GREAT LOCKBOURNE ESCAPE," (c) child welfare agencies, (d) state officialdom in general?

It's Your Call....


Tom Garrett 6 hours, 6 minutes ago on 659 It's Your Call... Casting the first stone?

From Reuters.


Florida police stop 3-year-old boy riding motorized big wheel on highway

Florida police made an unusual traffic stop when they spotted a 3-year-old boy riding his motorized toy car on the highway.

Citrus County deputies were stunned to see the boy riding along the US 19 in Crystal River wearing only a diaper and t-shirt early Wednesday

Concerned motorists formed a protective blockade around the boy and alerted police, according to ABC Action News.

"The kid was bewildered. How did he even get out here?" said witness Danny Collins.

"Any parent that goes through something like that would be sick to their stomach."

The boy’s father claimed that the child sneaked out of their nearby house as he was using the bathroom. He used a chair to reach the front door lock and it was only when the father called out for his son that he realized he was missing,

Deputies say the father then saw the door was open and immediately started searching for him on his bike.

Their names are not being released as the case is investigated by the Department of Children and Families.




Tom Garrett 6 hours, 7 minutes ago on 687 It's Your Call. Plastic bag laws.

This is probably going to be the shortest and sweetest string ever, but because I knew you would have a lot of interest in this new law as a result of some things that are going on over in California and a couple of other hotbeds of progressive legislation, I knew you would want to see it as a separate string.

Here you are:

Are you happy or sad that Arizona just passed a law that says that cities cannot ban the use of plastic bags or charge for their use?

It's Your Call.


Tom Garrett 6 hours, 8 minutes ago on SCAM

Thanks to both of you. If there's one thing we can all do for each other is to point out scames when we come across them.

Thanks again!


Tom Garrett 6 hours, 11 minutes ago on 686 It's Your Call. Do-gooder housing laws.

"Affordable homes do not belong in a neighborhood of $400,000 homes. "

I agree of course, Pat. And I do not like it when towns and cities try to force developers to build things they do not want to build. If the need is there then the profit is there, and in our system that's all it takes to get things done. If there's no profit then the need simply isn't great enough. Besides, I much prefer the English way of doing it; it there is a need for VERY low income housing the towns and cities simply build it and rent it out at low prices. And yes, I know that smacks of socialism, but I've seen it work and as far as I could see it do nothing but good, so I am willing to be flexible and learn a bit from others. For one thing, it did away with crime ridden slum areas, and that's a good thing.


Tom Garrett 6 hours, 16 minutes ago on 684 It's Your Call. Ever seen a "party bike?"

"However he should have had another reason to stop him, like no tail light, dirt on the license plate or something."

Right. You always need an excuse to do what you are really trying to do. :-)


Tom Garrett 6 hours, 18 minutes ago on 697 It's Your Call. Obama talking about Muslims.

Want an education? Google St. Patrick's Cathedral, Karachi. Or the Seventh Day Adventist hospital. Be sure to get a look at the inside of Saint Pat's on Sunday; see the relaxed atmosphere in the pictures; learn the difference between the truth and the mistruths. Keep looking around. See the spaghetti junction intersection in a teeming city of many millions taken at night; it looks like something in Houston, Texas. Go look at Paradise Beach where we used to go swimming. See the Grammar School. See Karachi Stadium taken from the air. Look at Elphinstone Street; the architecture may be different but the street packed with cars and the neon lights advertising Seiko, LG, and Citizen are the same as in NYC, Tokyo, and London, and the woman are dressed in as many different ways as those in Payson; in traditional salwar, kameez, and dupatta; in ordinary modern clothes, with or without head scarves, and even in a burka. See the Forum Mall with its escalators and fashionable shops that Paysonites would kill for. These are not ignorant, savage, desert dwellers sitting around a fire in some vast sand desert; these are people who are as much like, and as much different from, any group of people in any large city in any nation in the world. They do not spend their entire day thinking about religion and conquest; they just go to work, earn a living, take care of their families, and do their best to make it in a complex modern world.

Go see it for yourself! I've been trying to explain that people are by and large just people no matter where you go. They were just people in Iceland; in Germany, Italy, and France; in Japan; in Okinawa; in Pakistan; in the Philippines; in India; in the UK, and everywhere I spent over twelve years of my life outside this country.

It just irks me that someone who speaks out of both sides of his mouth has waited until the last few days of his second term to say what he should have been saying all along.


Tom Garrett 6 hours, 18 minutes ago on 697 It's Your Call. Obama talking about Muslims.

And by the way, I feel no "disdain" for Barack Obama; what I feel is dislike. Remember, I get email from the White House every day, and I read what those emails say, and so I know the lies and half-truths that he constantly spouts. And here's what galls me about his comments: Because he spends so much time putting out propaganda he has destroyed the public confidence in what he says. Therefore, to many people anything he says is NOT true.

I'd have liked it much better if he had simply left the subject of Muslims alone, or made it something he talked about years ago, BEFORE he ran a second time. If he really believes in what he is saying, why didn't he do that?

To put it in plain English, one of the earliest things we all learn is "Consider the source." Anything coming from a liar is suspected to be just another of the same.

And I just this moment realized why this subject hit me so hard. It's simple now that I think about it. I have spent my entire adult life since I arrived back in the United States in 1961 from Pakistan trying to tell people that the false picture of Muslims painted by some people is simply not true. To have some creep like Obama try to cash in at the very last minute of his eight years in office, saying what I have said all along, and making what I have said suspect is galling.

Charles, I spent three years in Pakistan, a Muslim nation. I worked with Muslims every day. I dealt with them officially and unofficially. I had some very close Muslims friends. And the ideas I see today about the Islamic world were wrong then, and are wrong now, although the problems we have made worse by going into Iraq when we had no reason to do is has changed a lot of the feelings in Muslim nations, and will take decades to get straightened out again. Listen, in a Muslim nation I was married in one of the most beautiful Catholic cathedrals in the world, one of two large Catholic cathedrals in Karachi. There are today eleven Christian churches in that city. My son David was born in the Seventh Day Adventist hospital, which is still there and still running.