Gustavo's Latest KCRW "Orange County Line": On the Push for Little Arabia!

The push to make Anaheim's Little Arabia a legal reality has been going on for a couple of years now, with the best examination being Gabriel San Román's treatise back in 2012. Last month, the Los Angeles Times took a crack at it; this week, I decided to take on the subject in my weekly "Orange County Line" commentary for KCRW-FM 89.9--not because it was breaking news, but because any sort of coverage I can give to the issue, I will do.

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Orange County Tries to Woo Tourists in Dubai

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"Emirati and Saudi visitor numbers are increasing and many of them are there for medical tourism, staying for 30 days."

-Ed Fuller, president and chief executive of the Orange County Visitors' Association, explaining to The National why his is the first U.S. regional tourist organization to have a permanent office in Dubai.

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Nahla Kayali of AccessCal Named by the White House a Cesar E. Chavez "Champion of Change"

The Arab American Institute
Nahla Kayali, a "Champion for Change"
Nahla Kayali, founder and executive director of the Anaheim nonprofit Access California Services, is being honored by the White House today as a Cesar E. Chavez "Champion of Change."

To be clear, that's Barack Obama's White House, not Bruno Serato's (speaking of champions for change).

Kayali is one of 10 community leaders nationwide to be honored today in D.C.

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Alice in Arabia Cancellation Before It Starts by ABC Family Cheered by CAIR-LA: Update

See the update at the end of this post on CAIR-LA welcoming ABC Family's decision to cancel production of Alice in Arabia.

ORIGINAL POST, MARCH 20, 7:33 A.M.: When ABC Family announced a new addition to its lineup, the Greater Los Angeles-Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA) in Anaheim sprang into action, not to see if their cable television grid includes the channel but to arrange a meeting with network executives.

Muslim and Arab-American community leaders want to discuss their concerns about potential stereotyping in the pilot for the new series called Alice in Arabia (think Wonderland but much hotter).

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Anaheim "Shawarma Summit" Marks New Era for Little Arabia

Papa Hassan's
A week after Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait mentioned Little Arabia in his State of the City speech, community members came together for a 'Shawarma Summit.' Papa Hassan's, listed as one of our ten essential restaurants in the city, played host to the event presented in partnership with the Arab American Civic Council (AACC).

The luncheon in West Anaheim's great unofficial ethnic enclave brought a diverse group of people to the table including representatives of elected officials, businessmen and neighborhood groups to talk about the future of Little Arabia.

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Islamic Group's Forum for Educators in Anaheim Creeps Out Creeping Sharia

A blog critical of Islamic groups in the U.S. has issued a warning about an upcoming educational forum in Anaheim, referring to the sponsor as "an unindicted co-conspirator to the largest terrorist financing conviction in U.S. history."

But the same thing could have posted about a group that operates in Anaheim every day--and, no, that's not another Disneyland dig. Although ...

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Nearly Half of Muslim Students in California Schools Have Been Bullied in Some Way: Report

Nearly half of California's Muslim students say they have been subjected to some form of bias-based bullying, according to a first-ever report released Thursday. "Growing in Faith: California Muslim Youth Experiences with Bullying, Harassment and Religious Accommodation in Schools" was presented by the California chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CA), whose Greater Los Angeles office is in Anaheim.

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[VIDEO]: Glenn Greenwald's Keynote Address to CAIR-LA's Banquet in Anaheim

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The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA) released a video of Glenn Greenwald's keynote address last weekend during the organization's 17th-annual Faith in Freedom banquet at the Anaheim Hilton.

For all those not in attendance, the journalist who first exposed the massive surveillance of the National Security Agency (NSA) earlier this year through interviews with whistleblower Edward Snowden in The Guardian, was not physically in attendance himself as he would have like to have been.

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New Anaheim Hookah Lounges to Go Up in Smoke?

I remember seeing my first hookah at a backyard party in Anaheim with Palestinian friends during my teenage years. When they brought out the shining silver stunner, I wondered if it was some sort of Arabic bong! Party people took sociable tokes of flavored tobacco and the plumes of smoke blown into the night air didn't smell like dank weed.

Hookah lounges came later in life for me, but are becoming increasingly irksome for some of Anaheim's notorious NIMBYs. As a result of their whining, the city is looking to an ordinance that would put a temporary ban on them from opening.

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Alex Odeh Assassination Hearing by Judiciary Committee Requested by Rep. Loretta Sanchez

Alex Odeh, R.I.P.
Reps. Loretta Sanchez (D-Garden Grove) and John Conyers, Jr. (D-Michigan) co-authored a letter to the chairman of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee requesting a hearing on the assassination of Alex Odeh, the Palestinian-American civil rights leader who perished in a 1985 bomb blast in Santa Ana.

The last time a congressional hearing was held on the unsolved slaying--by the U.S. House Judiciary Subcommittee on Criminal Justice--was in 1986.

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