Paula: this made me think of you.


This is Shah Jahan, a Muslim immigrant who I met Christmas Eve, when I was giving out backpacks for our Backpacks For The Street nonprofit for the homeless. I had one backpack left when I met him. And, he was SO excited to get the backpack because he had no gloves. His fingers were literally turning blue.

As I was walking off, I saw him walk over and give the backpack to a guy across way. I walked back and asked him what was up. He explained that the other guy had no socks and needed them more he did.

I almost started crying right there. It was such a beautiful gesture and act of sheer selflessness. I asked Shah to wait. I jumped on the subway and raced home and grabbed a backpack, with food, toiletries, clothing and all the stuff we normally give out, and added it some extra pairs of socks and gloves, and rushed back to give Shah a full backpack all his own.

I was so incredibly moved and a flutter with this man's spirit of generosity -- when he has nothing but the clothes on his back and a few items he lugs around in a garbage bag. So, I cancelled my afternoon plan to grab coffee with a friend and took both Shah and the other guy (named George) to a diner for dinner.

How amazingly beautiful to see someone sacrifice the one thing he needed most to someone else simply because he felt the other guy had even less of nothing than he did.

Clearly the threat to America from this Muslim immigrant is an overload of kindness and compassion.

Join the movement: [ Backpacksforthestreet.org Link ]

— Jeffrey Newman .

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Paula Miritello