Monthly Archives: March 2010

Are Radical Muslims Really That Important?

A basic assumption of Fox News and American right wing pundits is that Muslim fanatics are powerful forces in the world and they inflame millions of people as part of their crusade against the Christian West. If one listened to Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh, Muslim militants are behind all the terrorism in the world. The incident a few years ago of a Danish cartoonist drawing pictures of the Prophet Muhammad with a turban shaped like a bomb is often cited to prove that Muslims seek to stifle freedom of speech and the press. Yesterday, a group of Muslim protestors hauled down the Swedish flag in Malaysia and demanded censorship of such cartoons. Actually, the “crowd” consisted of 200 hundred men and another protest drew about 50.

A question to pose is whether the West had wildly exaggerated the influence or power of the so called “Muslim militants.” Were they ever as powerful as imagined in the West? Perhaps, inadvertently in giving notice to small groups the West has created the monster.

Let Them Drink Beer If We Break Down Their Door!

The search for drug dealers all too often results in the innocent being the ones who suffer. Police in Southampton Hampshire in England broke down the door of a house and pushed Anthony McVey against the wall yelling and screaming at their fortune in finding the noted drug dealer in his home. Oops, it was not the home of any drug dealer, but that of McVey and Kayleigh Hill as well as two small children. The alleged drug dealer had once lived in the building but had long since gone. OK, the door is broken, the family is frightened, children are crying and police are searching the apartment for a non-existent person. So, what do the police do once they realize it is the wrong man and the wrong family? They do what any decent police unit would do–they return the next day and present the family with a bottle of beer worth $2.50 and some flowers.

Oh, the police unit is trying to raise some money to pay for the busted door. I wonder if they might contact the drug dealer and secure his financial assistance. After all, it used to be his door!

The Tragedy Of Pope Benedict XV

Pope Benedict XVi is a decent man who has devoted his life to service of the Catholic Church. The issues he now confronts dealing with Paedophiles in the church derive from his efforts to place the Church before interests of its members. In 1980, then Carindal Joseph Ratzinger who was archbishop of Munich, was told about a priest who had molested children and was allowed to get therapy before being sent off to another place to molest more children. A memo has been found which indicates he approved of having the man continue as a priest. There are reports the Pope knew about a priest in America who molested over 200 deaf boys and did nothing to remove the man from his position.

The German Archdiocese now acknowledges mistakes were made in the past Pope Benedict can not undo the past, but he could make an effort to ensure molesting of children will not occur in the future. Perhaps, a first step is to rethink the thousand year old policy of celibacy and create a modern Catholic Church in which married priests and nuns can better serve its members.

Israel Defiant And Stands For Conflict!

Benjamin Netanyahu is a determined man, determined to carry out his ideas regardless of the implication for his nation and the cause of peace. Many charge Netanyahu is insistent about the importance of constructing new housing in areas of Jerusalem in which Palestinians are the majority because his goal is to rebuild Jerusalem as a Jewish city. He shrugged off reports that his coalition is behind his stubborn refusal to display moderation in order to entice Palestinians to the negotiation table. “I, myself, plan to continue building in Jerusalem” and the coalition has nothing to do with it, and that better be understood by President Obama and Hillary! To make clear to one and all that Benjamin speaks for large numbers of Israelis, the Eretz Yisrael Lobby in the Knesset urged him to “oppose any gesture to the Palestinians as a condition for renewed talks.”

There is an old legend about an “Appointment in Samarra” in which a servant, seeing Death in the marketplace urges his master to flee to Samarra. After his master leaves, the servant meets Death in the marketplace and berates him for frightening his master. Death replies, ‘I was just passing through your city, I have an appointment in Samarra.”

Israel has an appointment in Samarra and it will meet Death in that place.

Buggery Is Buggery Say Malawi Ministers!

Hundreds of years ago, missionaries from western nations forced their way into Africa in order to spread the word of Jesus Christ about love and peace in the world. Somewhere along the path of love, Protestant churches in east Africa got sidetracked into believing Christianity meant hating those who differ. The Council of Churches in Malawi expressed their anger toward western nations which threaten to withhold aid to their impoverished nation because of its anti-gay laws. A recent case involving two gay men might result in prison sentences of up to 14 years for the men. Bishop Joseph ”Burumbwe said ministers unanimously agreed that homosexuality was a sin that should be punished.

Chief Justice Lovemore Manlo supported church leaders and emphasized the law was clear about the offence of buggery and indecent sexual practices. One would expect that an individual with the name of “Lovemore” might have some love in his heart for those who differ with him.

Ethiopia Blocks Broadcasts In Name Of Freedom

Ethiopia has been a close ally of the United States in east Africa and even accepted urging by former President George Bush to invade Somalia in order to crush Muslim groups. For over half a century the US has broadcast in local Amharic languages in order to foster ideas of democracy and freedom of speech and press. However although the government of Prime Minister Meles Zenawi was receptive to the idea of invading Somalia he certainly was not willing to risk his own political career on something termed, a free election. Many opposition candidates for the upcoming election are in jail or have been physically assaulted. The Voice of broadcast stories about these attacks on freedom of speech and the press. That is not exactly what the government expects from an “ally.”

Prime Minister Meles Zenawi announced that he was closing down the VOA because of its actions to create violence and terror in his nation. He made his disgust with “the objectivity of the servicer” and mad clear his government will be “working on blocking the service.” For some reason, the VOA did not get the message that in Ethiopia, a free election means the government is free to intimidate and kill the opposition without reprisal. How come that was not known at the VOA?

No To Ground Zero Payout!

There supposedly are seven wonders in the world, but assuredly, there is also an eighth wonder–the amount of money that lawyers obtain in any financial settlement dealing with people who have gotten screwed by those in positions of authority. Federal Judge Alvin Hellerstein refused to accept a negotiated settlement dealing with compensation for those who worked on the World Trade Center site after the 9/11 bombing. A nine year process of working out a settlement based on a point system would have given some workers a few thousand while others would have received hundreds of thousands. As Judge Hellerstein noted: “I will not preside over a settlement that is based on fear or ignorance.”

The United States without a doubt has among the world’s fiercest lawyers when it comes down to gaining compensation for those who suffer, but it also has those same lawyers who make certain they emerge with millions. The question is: why are lawyers necessary in working out a settlement for those who suffered? Heck,in 1944, the United States government passed the G.I. Bill of Rights to compensate those who served, and not a single penny went to lawyers!

Is This Halal Or Kosher?

I served in the armed forces during the Korean War and learned to eat bacon and ham and whatever was on a menu since hunger, not religion was a dominant thought. Today, the US Army is providing both Halal and Kosher meals for Muslim and Jewish members of the military. Over 1.2 million such meals were given to troops during 2009. I wonder if this could begin a new trend which would result in respecting the religious and cultural beliefs of those who serve. Then again, if soldiers get the meal do they get the time off to enjoy it? After all, how about a Seder in Iraq or Afghanistan in order to show the local Muslims we are an equal opportunity employer?

i wonder if this could initiate a new trend that respects cultural and personal beliefs of members of the military. How about a little peyote seeking peace of mind, and time off to enjoy its pleasant dreams?

Palin Wants Money-And Lots Of It!

Former governor, former vice president candidate, former beauty queen, former icon of poor and oppressed Americans, Sarah Palin, intends to stand up for those without by ensuring that she winds up with lots of it, money that is. Ms. Palin is pitching a reality TV show, tentatively entitled, “her Alaska,” in which the world will learn about the struggles of moose and deer and polar bears who are simply trying to prove they can make it even though they inhabit the upper climes of the United States of America. Ms. Palin will not take a million less than what she is worth since how many Republicans can pose-fully or not clad– as the champions of those without? After all, if you are without, doesn’t it make sense to get with it and make lots of money– just like those liberal pansies do in Hollywood?

God bless Ms. Palin, and I am certain God up above or down below or wherever He spends his time worrying about Sarah Palin. that this woman will wind up wealthy–the wise part is just not in her future.

Facebook And Islam-Conflict?

A Nigerian civil rights group is appealing an Islamic court order to shut down its chat forums on Facebook and Twitter on grounds they allow negative remarks about Islamic law which is enforced in northern states of the nation. The issue a rose when there was discussion about a case in 2000 when a farmer had his hand chopped off because he stole a cow. The Association of the Muslim Brotherhood of Nigeria demanded any such discussion should cease because individuals were making negative remarks about a decision of a sharia court. Shehu Sani, argues there is something wrong when a poor farmer loses his hand over stealing while the rich and powerful make off with millions and nothing is ever done about chopping off hands.

As Sani commented: “We condemn the ruling and reject it. We think it is a violation of our freedom of expression.” We await a Sharia court ruling requiring removal of the tongue of Sani because it spoke ill of those in power who issue silly rulings about chopping off hands.