Yesterday, I was disgusted to see that Donald Trump released a statement attacking Hanan Hroub, last year's Global Teacher Prize winner, and a friend. I will not dignify Mr. Trump's latest heinous rhetoric with a link, but it's out there. Hanan is a teacher who has dedicated her life to teaching Palestinian children to "Say No to Violence," and has created teaching programs designed to help children learn, play, and overcome violent environments. Hanan is a champion of peace, and the world would be a better place if others focused on passing a message of nonviolence to our next generation.
I was blessed to have the opportunity to hear Hanan speak last night. Despite the personal attacks on her, she spoke with grace and dignity. Even though English was not her native language, she delivered the keynote address at the "Celebration of the Teacher" dinner at the New York Public Library in English. Her message of love - love of her students, love of teaching, love of learning, and love of peace, moved each of us listening to her.
Being the despicable sexist that he is, Mr. Trump attacked Hanan based not on her own teaching, actions, and statements, which have been lauded by everyone from the Pope, former US presidents, and other leaders from every continent. Instead, he attacked her based upon actions her husband took 35 years ago. Apparently, Mr. Trump is incapable of understanding that a strong woman should be valued for her own actions and words, and not those of a man in her life.
Hanan has spent her life teaching children to "say no to violence." Mr. Trump promotes violence to suit his political aspirations.
Hanan's answer to violence in the Middle East is to use education as a means to help future generations live in harmony. Mr. Trump's answer to violence in the Middle East is to plunder resources, escalate violent conflicts, drop more bombs, and condemn those who have been displaced by violent conflicts due to their ethnicity.
Hanan is a role model for teachers, women, students, and humans around the globe. Mr. Trump models behavior for our children that parents and teachers pray our children never emulate.
Hanan Hroub spreads inspiration, joy, and understanding when she talks. Donald Trump spreads hatred, fear, and ignorance whenever he speaks.
The fact that Donald Trump would attack a teacher, purely for political purposes, who has been recognized as being the best in the world for her work innovating ways to make the world more peaceful demonstrates exactly the type of person he is.