Velveteen Rabbi: The voices of American Muslim men.

Because I’ve been blessed to know Hussein for years, I paid special attention to his essay. He writes eloquently about growing up “painfully normal” in Queens, New York. His grandmother and his grade school were both located in Forest Hills, Queens, “one of the most diverse Jewish communities at the time.” He writes about how he developed racial identity consciousness first, and religious identity consciousness later. (Indeed: as a good second-generation American teenager, he rebelled against his parents, which naturally meant steering away from religiousness. For a while.)