Happy Thanksgiving everybody. Sadly I need to ask help from my friends and family. A relative of my sisters, gained through marriage, is a 15-year-old girl about to be forced to return to the home of a stepfather,who has been arrested for beating both her and her mother, despite the fact that she is legitimately scared of him hurting her again. The mother is an alcoholic who wasn’t even present for the first 5-10 years of er child’s life. She has a relative that she knows well she wants to move in with, but the mother wants her home. Back to an environment of drinking and abuse that’s she’s scared to go to. Back to a place where, as a person almost old enough to drive, she has no say in whether she is too scared to live with a man who isn’t even her father or not.
This girl is not 5 years old. She is intelligent but has no chance in the environment she is in.Please, if you have a few minutes, shoot an email off to the address at the end of this post and let them know how messed up and wrong this situation is.I’ll give more information if there is anything to be gained by doing so. Thanks guys!!
I recently posted a small share on facebook and will be providing more backround on this case because there HAS to be a better way.
I was having a discussion the other day with a friend on Facebook when suddenly racism reared its ugly head and made me realize something. My friend had posted an article explaining how people should realize that why terrorism is a threat, it’s not as big a threat as your media would have you believe. His post was commented on by an individual we have both had dealings with during political discussions on the site. He referred to turning Muslims into “calamari” and also claimed that as many as 20 percent of all Muslims, one out of every five, were plotting to kill Americans.
I was shocked by his statements. I found it even scarier since I know for a fact that the individual, who I will not name, is a 20-year-old who lives in his dad’s basement and obviously has very little real world experience of any kind, especially not enough to claim such a racist accusation towards a whole religion and race of people. His statements did get me thinking though, about how our media, especially those sources obviously bias towards political parties that support removal of our civil liberties and war mongering based on manufactured fear, are basically teaching racism to an entire generation of people obviously too dimwitted and easily influenced to know the difference.
I do believe there are Muslim EXTREMISTS who would like to do harm to the United States, this fact I will not argue. What I will argue is that the religion as a whole, or the Arabic people of this world, all want to kill us. This is just not true and is easily supported by facts. Yes there was a horrific terrorist attack on this country on 9/11. The group that perpetrated that attack though, apparently unknown to may people in this country, is not hugely popular or followed amongst most Muslims. Iran for example, a country regularly vilified on our newscasts, has no affiliation whatsoever with Al Qaeda. Furthermore, the vast majority of terrorist attacks that have taken place worldwide have not killed Americans, they’ve killed MUSLIMS. Do you really think that the part of the Muslim community, the part that is largely just like you and me in the sense that they are regular people just trying to live their lives, supports a group of people who keep blowing THEM up?
The bottom line is most of the animosity felt toward America by Muslims is one of two things; It’s either frustration over our constant involvement and occupation of their countries and secondly, the hateful, terrorist style agenda is practiced only by a fraction of the Muslim community.
It is truly shameful that so-called “reporters” and “news channels” in this country have waged such a propaganda war against the Middle East that a good-sized portion of our populous thinks all Muslims are walking around every day with bombs under their jackets. A relative of mine, recently during an everyday conversation, made the statement to me that “the Muslims are trying to take over the world.” WHAT?? By doing what? Blowing each other up?This person’s statement shocked me even more because of the fact that they didn’t even consider how racist and bigoted their statement was.
Every American can think what they wish but should always remember that judging a person to be evil, or hateful, just based on their religion or country of origin is ignorant, racist, bigoted and a message to our younger generations that they should hate those who are different from themselves during a time in history when the world needs to pull together more than ever. Truly sad.
I am not a man of religion. It’s not that I do or do not believe this belief system or that one. It’s more a case of me being a person who believes a human being is not capable of beginning to understand something so far beyond him such as the creator of everything, but that is another blog, another time. I only bring it up because of one thing I notice in today’s world that I do find intersecting with religious belief, that being the seven deadly sins. Yes, those seven terrible things(there is actually eight but I’ll touch on that later) that our parents or pastors told us about when we were young. Those seven things that there are endless quotes, stories, and fables about, warning us that if we allowed ourselves to be drawn into, our immortal souls would be lost. Again, I’m not a religious person but consider the following examples and just think about what it could mean…
Lust-We live in a society and a world driven by the human appetite for sex, for physical pleasure. There is virtually no boundary to what is sexually acceptable in today’s world. Pornography is amongst the highest viewed sites on the internet and is also a multimillion dollar business. Those in our society not as “attractive” tend to be placed behind those that are. Children are becoming sexually active at a younger age than ever before and pedophilia is a worldwide crime and also a business. Sex trafficking of human beings, a form of modern-day slavery, runs rampant in various parts of the world. The music and entertainment business is built upon chiseled men and scantily clad women. There is a whole industry of barely dressed, sexually suggestive female singers, whose images are completely built on their physical proportions and not at all on their actual level of talent. Homosexuality is a growing topic in our societies, accepted by communities that would have outcast its practitioners fifty years ago. Swingers, transsexuals, transvestites and any number of bizarre forms of sexual lifestyle have become mainstream and the basic family structure has broken down. It’s right in front of our eyes and we all see it.
Gluttony-Overindulgence of anything is gluttony. We live in a country where no amount of money is enough for those in pursuit of it. We have people driven their whole live to live in a 6000 square foot condominium while people on the other side of the world live in caves. Countries base their foreign policy on what will allow them to control the most resources. Countries that are nuclear powers spend trillions on thousands of nuclear bombs when hundreds would destroy the world. Whatever we find pleasure in we strive to have far more than we would ever need and whatever we don’t we wastefully discard.
Greed- Much like lust or gluttony, greed is virtually the same but focused mainly on wealth. Our world is driven by money. People will lie, cheat, steal, kill, rape, and do just about anything else nowadays to have more money or power than their neighbor or competitors. We fight wars over financially valuable resources and it seems that regardless of what the item of value is, no one can ever have enough of it. Here’s an example, though we all know it is far from the only one. Albert Haynesworth is a football player(sort of). He plays the defensive tackle position and is currently on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. A few years ago, after putting up all-pro level numbers and being widely regarded as one of the best as his position, he signed a massive $100,000,000 dollar contract to leave the Tennessee Titans and join the Washington Redskins. In his first season, he barely played and was benched by his coach because he “didn’t like” the style of defense they were playing and as a result he demanded to be traded. The following spring, despite the fact that he wasn’t really putting in any effort and had demanded a trade, and more importantly had refused to play anymore for the Redskins, he STILL cashed in a $20 MILLION dollar bonus check, regardless of the fact he had publicly stated he wouldn’t play another down. Wow
Wrath-Wrath is the only sin not necessarily associated with selfishness or self-interest(it’s possible just not a necessity). It is sometimes described as ” a love of justice perverted to revenge and spite” and generally embodies rage and vengeance. Wrath in our community can often be found fueling misguided attempts for justice. After the 9/11 attacks for example, the United States invaded Iraq. Though many would deny it, it was obvious that vengeance against tyrannical Muslim countries fueled it, as well as the war on terror. I personally know people who support the death penalty, the killing of another human they’ve never met, to the point that they would happily attend public lynchings. Court TV has become a huge business, with many people being tried in the court of public opinion long before they receive their right to a fair, impartial trial and it’s obvious that these cases, such as the Casey Anthony trial, fuel blood-lust in our society. Whether she was guilty or not is not the point, it’s the joy people take in enjoying the punishment, and hoping for harsh punishment regardless of the court’s decision, that falls into the category of wrath.
Envy- Envy is most obvious, at least to me, when watching the public reaction to the downfall of celebrities. Many will watch their struggles, whether it be Brittney Spear’s mental breakdown, or some other celebrity being arrested or sued, and take joy in it for apparently no other reason than they enjoy seeing someone with more than them fall. That is a textbook example of envy. We also see this in society and in our children. Rarely do competitors play fair or act honestly towards each other. They’re not able to because their envy over having what their opponent does blinds them to anything but total victory. There’s nothing wrong with competition but when a person is willing to tear down another for no other reason than because that person has more than they do, envy is in play.
Pride-Pride is typically considered the most original and serious of the deadly sins. I couldn’t agree more and one need not look very far for examples. Self love is another version of it and with such a celebrity driven society it’s hard not to find it. Our media is full of talking heads so amazed by their own perspectives that they will lie, cheat and steal to stop any exposure of something incorrect in their points. Nationalism is the worst example of pride’s place in today’s world. So many countries are full of people who will support their country based on nationalistic pride even when their country is just plain wrong. On top of that, we have countries all over the world full of citizens who hate citizens of another country just based on that nationalistic pride. Just look at the example of the U.S.A. and any number or Middle Eastern countries, such as Iran. Many Iranians hate Americans just because Iran hates America and equally there are many Americans who hate Arabic people for the same reason, only obviously in reverse. One of the best quotes of all time, to me at least, is “pride comes before the fall.”
Vanity-Appearance is everything in today’s world. As is ego and if you don’t believe it just think about Hollywood for a minute. Think about hundreds of people walking on a red carpet so everyone can line up and take their picture and you’ll have vanity in a nutshell. We care far more about how we look than who we are inside as a race, and our mirrors often project more confidence in us than our actual substance as people.
Sloth- This sin is often intertwined with acedia and basically is laziness or the unwillingness to use one’s talents and abilities. Often considered one of the “less serious” sins, it still is having a negative effect. Sloth could also be connected with our constant desire to make everything easier through technology. Easier is not always better and it is not unreasonable to think that if we continue down the technological path we are walking we eventually will all be sitting in a pod all day having robots do even the simplest tasks for us.
Acedia-Unfamilar to most people as a sin on this list, acedia is basically the unwillingness to do something one knows they must do. Total apathy would be another good way to describe it and often this sin is connected with and a cause of intentional suicide. This is the sin I can relate to the most personally as apathetic is a light word for how I truly feel about this world. Acedia is common in people who suffer from depression and often fuels it and I think we can all agree that apathy towards making decisions we know we must make is growing every day in this country and in the world.
I believe we are all slaves to these sins and with our bondage to them, we are dragging this world further and further down. I personally feel constantly affected by wrath and by acedia/sloth. I have little caring for the world outside of my own family and close friends and I realize I am far from the only one who feels that way. Whether these “sins” are religious in nature or just natural parts of human nature, they are killing us as a race. If we continue to see these actions get stronger and stronger in our society i cannot see a good ending for humanity. Remember, human beings being alive and stable is not a given, it like anything else, can be brought down by bad decisions, immoral actions, and selfish acts. I see all these sins going strong and hope we work on it as a race. I’m trying to change and I hope others are too.
I wrote a blog a few days ago about a few of the 2012 theories and wanted to follow-up with a few more. The original two I went with were, at least in my opinion, questionable at best, though the Mayan theory does have some interesting and factual science behind it’s backbone. Now, as we all know, there has been numerous impending disasters that had “facts” to support it, so that never cements something as large as Armageddon but the ones with a few facts behind them always deserve at least a little consideration. So, with those two theories behind us let us consider a few more….
The Solar Storm Theory-Our Sun is a powerful entity. Strong enough to keep this planet warm and stable, some people believe it could also be a source of destruction next year. The Sun goes through what is called a “solar cycle” which lasts 11 years, and this is a documented fact, not a theory. During the course of these 11 years, sun spots come and go, but at the peak of the cycle, solar storms typically occur. When they do, the Sun tends to eject massive amounts of energy into space and the particles it spews forth could possibly hit the earths atmosphere at a million miles an hour. Now while we do know for a fact this will happen, it is debatable as far as the intensity of the storms. In a worst case scenario, satellites could crash to Earth, causing massive communication outages as well as water shortages, and the aftermath of those problems could be massive social and economic issues that could go beyond the control of governments. In an even worse scenario, there could be a pole shift. While highly unlikely, if this were to happen there would be a significant chance of the super volcano under Yellowstone park, which is waaay overdue for an eruption, to erupt. If that was to happen it would have an estimated force of ten atomic bombs, most likely blacking out the Sun over this country for months, aside from the massive outages that would follow. Yikes!! Now again, while the results are in question, the event is not. These storms are unpredictable and to be honest, we probably wont know the intensity of them until it happens. All we can do is be prepared.
I only want to add one more, though there are many more which I will allude to at the end. This last one I find very interesting as it is happening now and is completely supported by science and fact. I’m talking about bees, or rather the appearance of the extinction of bees. For the last 15 years or so, bees worldwide have been acting very strangely, actually they’ve basically been flying away to their deaths. Abandoning nests and their queens, who cannot survive without their colony, the bee populations bizarre behavior has led to a rapid decline in their numbers and scientists have no explanation other than theories. Now you might wonder why this is a big deal. Well simply put, both crops and plant life in general would have serious survival issues without the pollinating behavior of the worldwide bee population. These shortages in crop production to lead to a decline in exports from countries that produce basic crops….it may not seem serious but eventually could lead to major issues.
Now again, there are many other theories such as the Nostradamus prediction, Global Warming, and even a theoretical pole shift but again who knows? All these theories have their pros and cons but it’s more likely that life will go on. One thing for sure though, if any of them are correct we probably wont be in any shape to spend time discussing it right??
We are all victims of the media driven world we have created. You would think people would have to be significant in their actions or goals to be a regular staple on our televisions but in truth, as we all know, that is not the case. Stupidity, corruption and just plain ignorance will also gain someone notoriety in today’s world. Let’s look at a few of them together.
Lindsay Lohan-Man it must be nice to have the celebrity version of laws, that being you can violate the same law and your probation 13 times before you get in trouble, applied to all of us. Seriously, does this girl have to mass murder 50 people to actually get penalized for it?
Bill O’reilly/Sean Hannity/Rachael Maddow/Keith Olberman-Obviously these are just a few of the talking heads of our supposed “free” media. All four of these clowns regularly distort facts, doctor photos and misquote those who oppose them politically including when they attack each other. Whenever they are caught doing unethical reporting, they simply claim it was “an honest mistake” when we all know there isn’t an honest bone in any of their bodies. I particularly like when recently Bill O’Reilly held a poll on his website about which GOP candidate you would vote for. When Herman Cain and Ron Paul won the poll, he responded by pulling the poll, claiming their supporters flooded the poll(isn’t that what happens when someone wins a poll?), and saying it was for “entertainment purposes only!WOW
The United States Government-Where do I begin? Recently the Inspector General of the Federal Reserve, assigned to investigate and monitor the dealings of the Fed, was asked why their balance sheets had increased by over a trillion dollars in the last year and her response? “I don’t know”. That question was followed up with “Do you know who that trillion dollars went to?” Her response? ” I don’t know”. Fabulous, a trillion taxpayer dollars and no one knows where they went or who they went to. Again…wow
Nicholas Cage- The actor my brother hates(lol) recently had to file bankruptcy, surprising considering he’s been making movies for well over a decade. He is also suing his manager claiming he was defrauded of millions of dollars. Ya Nick, it was your managers fault that you felt the need to buy a CASTLE IN SCOTLAND….LOL
Nicole “snooki” Polizzi- Do I even have to explain???
The rest of the cast of Jersey Shore -See above^
Obama-Change!!! Yes we could use some.
Banks-If you can pay a 20 million dollar bonus to your CEO, explain to me why you’re receiving tax dollars??
Unstable Arab countries -So wait, you’re mad at the United States so your solution is to set off bombs all over YOUR country and kill YOUR people?Ummm…ok
Congress-Why doesn’t anyone have an issue with congress being in charge of passing laws that regulate and benefit the companies they all own stock in? Does anyone really think they’re going to say “I think we should pass this law that will make us lose money on our stocks?”
United States media- Why don’t they just change Fox to “The Republican Channel” and MSNBC to “The Democrat Channel” and CNN to “The we don’t want to get involved channel”?
Nuclear Arsenal- Countries like the U.S., Russia, China, etc. all have over a thousand nuclear bombs that they’ve paid millions to manufacture? Why?? If everyone shoots off, say 100, what will be left to blow up?
Medical Advancement- So wait, we have advanced farther into medical knowledge than any time in history and as a result we have MORE diseases tha ever before??What??
Space- So we were able to fly to the Moon with 1969 technology and 40 years later we’re still 20 years away from being able to go back?
More to come.Shut your face
Our planet and our bodies are 75 percent water, yet we cant figure out how to make sure everyone has clean drinking water.
People don’t treat their pets differently based on their color but we treat other humans different for that reason?
Every time a celebrity gets divorced it’s news, but the death of our war veterans only make the local obituaries?
Religion, the word of God, is said to be all-knowing, yet we as a society know which words to follow and which ones to ignore?
When a bank is robbed, the FBI is all over it, yet when the Federal Reserve can’t account for where or to who 1.2 TRILLION dollars of taxpayer funds went, it’s up to the Fed, the people who lost the money, to investigate?
When we’re young, we are taught lying is bad but the older we get, the more it seems like it doesn’t matter.
There are so many planets in the universe that we can’t even make a number large enough to state it, but we KNOW we are the only life forms out there?
Why did anyone invent nuclear bombs? Or abortion?
You can get the death penalty for murdering someone, but if it’s done because your government ordered it, it’s ok.
We legalize abortion to stop people from being born, then we want science to clone people and organs to keep people alive?
People fight against gay marriage, even as a large percentage of those fighting it are divorced, yet they claim the “sanctity” of marriage is at stake?
The United States was founded based on freedom of religion, but tell that to a Muslim living in the bible belt.
We have a country that is supposed to have a government open to anyone interested in public service, yet almost every politician out there is not the first in their family to hold an office?
What are the odds that the president of the United States would come from only 2 families in a 20 year period when there are 400 million people in the country?
More to come later…cya
I notice that there are countless blogs online these days. Everybody trying as hard as they can to stand out, to have their blog be the biggest, the most viewed, whatever. I can understand their drive, who doesn’t want to be successful in what they do? I guess it depends on your definition of success but whatever. Now, me personally, I blog for a different reason. I like people’s input but I would write my blog even if I was the only one who reads it. I write for my mind. I write because I’m sad, because I’m happy, because I understand the world, because I don’t know what the hell is wrong with everyone. I write because I’m confident in my thoughts, but scared to tell people what I really think, because I want everyone to get along and because I want wrath brought down on those I hate. I blog about the world because I love it and society because I hate it. I want my child to have hope, my friends to have health and my enemies to have pain. I write because I hate my medication, but like feeling more stable. I like sharing my dreams but hiding my nightmares, having no goals but obsess over my obsessions. I idolize Plato and embody the Joker. I envy the jesters and rue the kings. I seek the truth but know not which one to believe. I am one, yet my doppelgänger speaks to me each moment…these are the reasons I blog…
I was reading a story today about the continuing stress being added to the situation of Iran’s nuclear program . The Pentagon has released information about new, 30,000 pound bunker busting bombs, these are bombs that they are implying could be used to destroy an underground WMD program such as the one Iran has. This issue has been growing in intensity for some time and based off the situations that have taken place over the last decade or so, it’s easy to see where this could all be heading. The only difference is that a war with Iran would likely be far more serious and costly, both financially and in human lives. As Leon Panetta, who is our defense secretary prepares to visit Israel, he publicly declared that he would warn them against any military action. By doing so we see mixed signals coming from the Obama administration and that’s never good.
Here’s my problem with this whole situation and I believe it’s the same issue we have with North Korea.The United States, as well as our allies, demands on a regular basis that countries, such as Iran and North Korea allow full access to their nuclear programs and also that they reveal exactly how many nuclear warheads they have. Additionally these countries demand that the IAEA have full access to inspect and monitor these programs. Now this wouldn’t really be an issue in the world community except for one, glaring, hypocritical point; Israel follows none of these rules yet suffers none of the same penalties.
I have nothing against Israel, to be completely honest, I don’t really see them as any different from most. The problem though is so obvious I can’t believe that none of the talking heads of the media world ever have the balls to say it. Well, since they have no nuts, I’ll say it for them. Why is it ok for Israel to have undeclared, unmonitored nuclear weapons programs with no one complaining or demanding any penalties? Trust me, I do not have a lot of faith in the good intentions of Iran or North Korea. I think that both their governments are kind of crazy and not very good for their citizens. That being said though, the bottom line is why would anyone expect these countries to follow rules that the very countries that made these rules don’t follow themselves? I agree that Iran and North Korea appear very unstable and make statements that seem insane to us, but have either of them ever used a nuclear weapon? If any time a country made threatening statements they are considered in violation of some unspoken planetary law, then we would all be in violation as all governments make these statements from time to time.
Look, in the end, I’m sure ill be attacked by the simpletons as hating America or loving Iran or some ridiculous statement like that but that isn’t the truth. The truth is I accept that fact that the freedom we expect each of us to have a god given right to in this country doesn’t stop being a right once you exit our borders. The United States, despite it being the best place in the world to live, has no more right to tell other governments what they can or cannot have any more than those governments have the right to tell us the same. We are fools if we believe, regardless of what crazy words have been spoken by this country or that one, that other countries are going to respect rules we put forth when our own allies aren’t held to the same rules. Stick and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me. We don’t own the planet and have no right to punish other government over what WE think they will do.
What is the value of a human life? Is it something that can be measured? It’s a fair question, especially in today’s world. Not fair in the sense that a human being should have a dollar value attached to it, but fair in the sense that we have done exactly that in today’s world. Despite the fact that we are at a time in history when we are more technically advanced than we’ve ever been, we still see widespread famine, a lack of clean drinking water and disease that is rampant in some countries while non-existent in others. This is where I start to see the term of value being attached to human lives. The reason I say this is that while it may not be the responsibility of other countries citizens to ensure food, medicine, or clean water for children and adults in other parts of the world, isn’t it the right thing to do? I find it shocking that we spend 660 million dollars on defense, we shoot satellites all over space all the time and in the same day and age, there are still countries where people live in huts and drink water filled with dirt.
How have we become so uneven as far as the rate of personal improvement in the world? Does the human race have a responsibility to be unified in our progress? These are legitimate, straightforward questions but the answers are not nearly as clear-cut. On one hand, from a philosophical standpoint, one has to consider the well-being of the human race and as a race, we all have to share the same planet so it would be reasonable to believe that we would all benefit by the advancement of all of us as a whole. There is also a flip-side to this that, while not as cuddly as an option, is also reasonable to consider. Some people would say it is more beneficial to us as a race to let the less successful people suffer and die off, much like the weakest lion in a pack. They reason that the weaker people will drag the stronger ones down if the stronger ones contribute resources they need to make up for the lack of success of the weak. I guess I can see how people could come to either view, though I personally would see things the first way as opposed to the second.
The real question though, when looking at the modern world is this; is the “survival of the fittest” type theory the reason that there is such an impasse between cultures and their levels of quality of life? Or is it something else? Some people in the world feel the greed of the more powerful countries has a large impact on the lack of progress of the smaller ones. Others feel that it is their right if they are superior. I’m not here to tell you which one to believe though, just here to put the question out there. The answer is a personal one to each of us, but I feel the important thing is asking the question in the first place. You see, I’ve found that in my life, my views haven’t so much changed as they have evolved and as they evolve, it brings up questions I had never considered. I believe knowing which questions to even consider in the first place is almost as important as realizing the best answer:)