At the top of her game


bilquisWhen people put their mind to it they can do anything.  Anything!  One of the great poets of the 20th century once said, ‘the hand of the believer is the hand of God, dominant, resourceful, full of light…..His heart is indifferent to the riches of the world.’  Where some people see barriers, others see challenges.  When some stop, others excel, and so it is with Bilqis Abdul Qaadir, a senior high school student who has broken the record for the most points scored in a high school basketball career by either male or female for the state of Massachusetts.  Coming from the home of Tarheel and Blue Devil basketball that’s no small feat in my opinion so Ms. Abdul Qaadir deserves major respect.  However what she has done so well in, playing basketball,  is overshadowed by the fact that she did it while being an observant Muslim adult woman, wearing the hijab and covering herself, albeit innovatively, according to her religious tradition.  The young lady seems to have everything going for her, a loving family with both parents involved in her life  and an eye towards life after collegiate basketball and she has managed that without any trace of bitterness or victimhood built up after years of Islamophobia in this country.  My hats off to her and I wish her all the success in the world.  She’s a role model, as a woman, a Muslim, a student athlete, and a member of this society  we all can look up to.