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Writer, actor, comedian, Maysoon Zayid is the co-founder of the New York Arab-American Comedy Festival.

Why you should listen
Early in her acting career, Maysoon Zayid realized she'd get a lot more stage time if she showed off how funny she was. As she told the BBC, "It became very obvious to me that in the United States of America, a fluffy ethnic disabled chick was never going to get a job unless she did stand-up."
A Palestinian woman from New Jersey, Zayid jokes about her family, global culture, and her life with cerebral palsy. Along with Dean Obeidallah, she founded the New York Arab-American Comedy Festival, now in its 10th year. She spends several months of the year in the Palestinian Territories running workshops for disabled and orphaned kids in refugee camps, using art to help them deal with trauma. And yes -- if you're an Adam Sandler fan, you'll recognize Zayid as the woman behind the beauty-shop counter in You Don't Mess With the Zohan.

What is Cerebral Palsy?
Cerebral palsy (CP) is a general term for a group of permanent movement problems that do not get worse over time. They cause physical disability,mainly in the areas of body movement. There may also be problems with sensation, depth perception, and communication ability. Difficulty with cognition and epilepsy are found in about one-third of cases. There are subtypes including a type characterized by spasticity, a type characterized by poor coordination, and types which feature both symptoms or neither.
Cerebral palsy is caused by damage to the motor control centers of the developing brain and can occur during pregnancy, during childbirth, or after birth up to about age three. About 2% of all cerebral palsy cases are believed to be due to a genetic cause. Cerebral palsy is not an infectious disease and is not contagious. Most cases are diagnosed at a young age rather than during adolescence or adulthood. Improvements in the care of newborns has helped reduce the number of babies who develop cerebral palsy and increased the survival of those with very low birth weights.
There is no cure, with efforts attempting to treat and prevent complications. It occurs in about 2.1 per 1,000 live births.Physical therapy may help. Cerebral refers to the cerebrum, which is the affected area of the brain. The disorder may often involve connections between the cortex and other parts of the brain such as the cerebellum. The root word "palsy" means "paralysis". In medicine, this is often used in reference to the paralysis or weakness that often accompanies nerve damage, loss of sensation or muscle disorders involving uncontrollable movements such as trembling or shaking.

Who are Muslims?
A Muslim, sometimes spelled Moslem, is a follower of the religion of Islam, a monotheistic (believes in one God) Abrahamic religion based on the Quran. Muslims consider the Quran to be the verbatim word of God as revealed to the Islamic prophet Muhammad. They also follow the teachings and practices of Muhammad as recorded in traditional accounts called hadith."Muslim" is an Arabic word meaning "one who submits (to God)". A female Muslim is sometimes called a "Muslimah".