Category Archives: Political affairs

Neutrality or silence vs Taking sides


””Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim.
Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”
~ Eliezer “Elie” Wiesel KBE (September 30, 1928 – July 2, 2016) was a Romanian-born American Jewish writer, professor, political activist, Nobel Laureate and Holocaust survivor. He was the author of 57 books, written mostly in French and English, including Night,.”

 

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On this day in history: Leon Trotsky was mortally wounded

Eighty years ago, on August 20, 1940, Leon Trotsky — the exiled co-leader of the 1917 October Revolution and founder of the Fourth International — was mortally wounded by an agent of the Soviet Union’s secret police, the GPU. The revolutionary leader died in a Mexico City hospital 26 hours later, in the early evening of August 21.

The murder of Trotsky was the outcome of a massive political conspiracy organised by the totalitarian bureaucratic regime headed by Stalin, whose name will for all of history be synonymous with counter-revolutionary treachery, betrayal and limitless criminality. That mass killer was the one who gave a bad name to Socialism, Marxism and Communism, many people confusing such terror dictatorships with the political and social life system, which has nothing to do with such oppressive systems as that one of Stalin and some others dictators.

In March 1939, there was already an attempt to have Trotsky murdered, which failed. Stalin assigned the overall organisation of implementing the task to the NKVD officer Pavel Sudoplatov, who, in turn, co-opted Nahum Eitingon (also known as Leonid Aleksandrovich Eitingon). According to Sudoplatov’s Special Tasks, the NKVD proceeded to set up three NKVD agent networks to carry out the murder. According to Sudoplatov, all three networks were designed to operate entirely autonomously from the NKVD’s hitherto-established spy networks in the U.S. and Mexico.

The study where Leon Trotsky was assassinated with an ice axe on 20 August 1940

Trotsky’s assassination was the climax of the campaign of political genocide, directed by the Kremlin, whose aim was the physical extirpation of the entire generation of Marxist revolutionaries and advanced socialist workers who had played a central role in the preparation and leadership of the Bolshevik revolution and the establishment of the first workers’ state in history.

The three show trials held in Moscow between 1936 and 1938 — judicial frame-ups that provided a pseudo-legal cover for the murder of virtually all the principal leaders of the October Revolution — were only the public manifestation of a campaign of terror that consumed hundreds of thousands of lives and dealt a shattering blow to the intellectual and cultural development of the Soviet Union and the world-wide struggle for socialism.

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Analysis: Will religious freedom flourish in post-treaty Middle East?

Could peace between the Jewish State and a Sunni Arab powerhouse portend increasing religious freedom across the Middle East?

By Lela Gilbert, World Israel News

On August 13, World Israel News reported that the United Arab Emirates and Israel have agreed to establish full diplomatic ties as part of a deal to halt Israel’s extension of sovereignty over Judea and Samaria. The announcement makes the UAE the first Gulf Arab state to do so and only the third Arab nation to have active diplomatic ties to Israel.”

The announcement was made by President Donald Trump.

“Now that the ice has been broken I expect more Arab and Muslim countries will follow the United Arab Emirates.”

So President Trump, who negotiated the agreement, predicted.

There was, of course, debate in Israel and beyond about whether the agreement had cast aside annexation of biblical Judea and Samaria for the sake of an elusive peace gesture. At the same time, there was celebration among young Israelis, embracing new hopes for harmony with the Arab world.

Despite the UAE flag emblazoned in lights across Tel Aviv’s city hall, heated discussions on the subject continue between American and Israeli, religious and secular, conservative and liberal Jews and their supporters.

‘Sarsour has no role in the campaign whatsoever,’

Biden spokesman says after DNC address

Meanwhile, conversations about the religious implications of the agreement have extended well beyond Jerusalem and Abu Dhabi. Could peace between the Jewish State and a Sunni Arab powerhouse portend increasing religious freedom across the Middle East?

Pope Francis

Pope Francis is welcomed by Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince , Feb. 4, 2019. (AP/Kamran Jebreili)

For several years, the United Arab Emirates has been painting a self-portrait not only of a super-wealthy Arab state, but also as a haven of religious freedom. And since Pope Francis’ dramatic visit there in February 2019, much has been said to affirm that these efforts amount to more than a photo-op.

Deutche Welle (DW) described the Pope’s visit as an historic milestone, reporting

 “More than 130,000 worshipers flocked to the Zayed Sports City Stadium in the UAE capital, Abu Dhabi, on Tuesday to celebrate a Mass with Pope Francis… He is the first leader of the Catholic Church ever to set foot on the Arabian Peninsula, the birthplace of Islam.”

If peace between Jews, Muslims and Christians is possible in one small Arab country, why couldn’t it extend further? Reflecting on this possibility, prayerful optimists have lifted their eyes heavenward while world-weary cynics continue to shake their heads.

On the optimistic side, DW explained that at the start of his papal visit, Pope Francis met with Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and other UAE leaders at the presidential palace.

“He also signed a document promoting ‘human fraternity’ with Sheikh Ahmed el-Tayeb, the grand imam of Egypt’s Al-Azhar, the seat of Sunni Muslim learning. During an address to a gathering of interfaith leaders, he called for an end to wars in the Middle East, including in Yemen and Syria. All religious leaders had a ‘duty to reject every nuance of approval from the word war,’ he said.”

But, as less-than-upbeat observers will quickly note, religious freedom in the Middle East often ends where radical Islam begins, whether that dangerous version of ideology is rooted in Shiite or Sunni tradition. In fact, in its 2020 Country Report, the U.S. Commission on Religious Freedom (USCIRF) declared that Egypt, Iraq and Turkey were included on its “Special Watch List,” while Iran and Saudi Arabia continue to be “Countries of Particular Concern” (CPC).

Both had either permitted or committed egregious violations of religious freedom. Indeed, the violent nature of conflicts in the Middle East, including genocides of Christians, Yazidis and other minorities, tend to discourage even the most enthusiastic proponents of dialogue and reconciliation.

Still, efforts for peace – whether motivated by economic promise or intended to create a bulwark against Iranian and Turkish aggression – should not be disregarded. It is a region where churches are sometimes bombed or torched and surviving synagogues are broken relics of happier days — before the wholesale expulsion of entire Jewish communities.

Nonetheless, the UAE has begun a unique project intended to transform the marred image of Muslim, Jewish and Christian relations: a Multi-Faith Complex – including the first official synagogue in the country’s history.

“A church, mosque and synagogue will share a collective space for the first time, serving as a community for inter-religious dialogue and exchange, and nurturing the values of peaceful co-existence and acceptance among different beliefs, nationalities and cultures,” the committee overseeing construction of the complex said in a statement.

For years, Israel and the United Arab Emirates have been holding clandestine meetings. Now their newly revealed projects include both economic and defense opportunities to which both have contributed expertise and funding. Today, the inclusion of other Arab states in such endeavors is already under discussion, including Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Sudan and more.

Sanguine regional conversations about peace and prosperity should never be silenced. Prayerful candles should always be lit by people of faith. Nevertheless, wary eyes keep their watch as Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan and Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei rage and rant about the Israeli-Emirati agreement’s betrayal of Islamic empire-building.

And while Abu-Dhabi’s construction of the Multi-Faith Complex prepares for its 2022 opening, deadly gunfire shatters quiet nights in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, while rockets and explosive balloons continue to darken the sunlit skies above Israel.

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U.S.A. Investment in a demagogue

From some old article, we want to select the thought about the businessman and television personality Donald Trump. For many Americans this man in charge is their half-god or their golden calf. Most of them who voted in favour for the extravagant man could not have brought some more dangerous man into government, for their nation, but also for the whole world. More than once he brought many out of the United States to sit on the edge of the chair, fearing he would push the “Red button”. He promised to make the nation great again. For sure, he managed to divide it more than ever and to bring it back down, to many years before Obama.

The people who voted for Trump invested in a demagogue who claimed he alone could solve their problems. There is a never a quick fix to a truly complex problem. And yes everyone knew that health care was this complex. What will we need to do to clean up from this mess? Trump has been up on the Hill for over 40 days. If he wants to clean up this mess he has to do it quickly. He alone can determine if he is going to be Moshe, Augustus, or a Golden Calf. Like the Golden Calf- Trump is a product of an ignorant and impatient group yearning to be heard. If only it was as easy as breaking a couple of Tablets to get them to shut up and listen for a moment. {from: Golden Calf and Trump, by Rabbi Avi Katz Orlow}

The populist, protectionist, and nationalist entered the 2016 presidential race as a Republican and was elected in a surprise victory over Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, although he lost the popular vote. The people have got many years now to listen to this businessman who has no empathy with the peoples of ‘his country’.

This man of “Fake News” has not recreated a fake world neither a real good world, but made the world even more turbulent than before.

Trump said:

What I worry about is that when problems are not addressed, people will not know who is responsible. And when the problems get bad enough, as they might do, for example, with another serious terrorist attack, as they might do with another financial meltdown, some one person will come forward and say, ‘Give me total power and I will solve this problem.’… That is how the Roman republic fell. Augustus became emperor, not because he arrested the Roman Senate. He became emperor because he promised that he would solve problems that were not being solved. {Golden Calf and Trump}

Trump has become emperor, though many thought he would never come so far. Surprisingly he became the oldest first-term U.S. president and the first without prior military or government service. How he got so many votes and where he got associated with, is something we shall to uncover in 50 years time, but it does not look very kosher. Continually this boaster has made many false or misleading statements during his campaign and presidency. In Europe lots of people do not understand how it could be that so many people really believe everything what this man says, and even do not see how he changed like the wind many times. Even after fact-checkers made it clear that the so-called facts of Mr. Trump were false, the majority of the American people still wanted to believe their god. The journalists who wanted to question Trump moreover his allegations and about his ‘sayings’were chastised and ridiculed towards the other press people. The media in the United States as well as out of that nation, have widely described the phenomenon as unprecedented in American politics. Many of his comments and actions have been characterized as racially charged or racist.  That way he is the first president who was able to create more division in that ‘great nation’ than ever before.

In case Trump was a product of an ignorant and impatient group yearning to be heard, we can only hope that group has come to its senses and have seen and understood now, how this man is such a fraud and someone is who one can miss as a toothache.

Yesterday former first lady Michelle Obama’s speech at the Democratic National Convention hit the nail on the head whilst she sought to strike that balance between a message of hope and a condemnation of Trump. Obama spoke as the wife of a former President who has seen “the immense weight and awesome power” of the presidency up close. She spoke as a mother trying to teach empathy and instill “a strong moral foundation” in her daughters. And she spoke as an American pained “to see so many people hurting” at a time when the coronavirus has claimed more than 170,000 lives in the US and cast millions into unemployment. She tried to appeal to voters who are frustrated and anxious about the chaos that the President has created, arguing that the America is underperforming

“not simply on matters of policy but on matters of character.”

she said convincingly.

“I know that regardless of our race, age, religion, or politics, when we close out the noise and the fear and truly open our hearts, we know that what’s going on in this country is just not right. This is not who we want to be.”
She warned the Americans:
Donald Trump is the wrong president for our country. He has had more than enough time to prove that he can do the job, but he is clearly in over his head. He cannot meet this moment. He simply cannot be who we need him to be for us. It is what it is.”
“If you take one thing from my words tonight, it is this,”
she continued.
“If you think things cannot possibly get worse, trust me, they can; and they will if we don’t make a change in this election. If we have any hope of ending this chaos, we have got to vote for Joe Biden like our lives depend on it.”

 

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So-called own sacred values under threat

The last few years we have seen populist politicians becoming more popular and getting a stronger following who wanted to cause a fuss here and there. Often they want to have their people believe their nation was great but got damaged by the many immigrants. They say the immigrant population weakens the country and brings democracy in danger.

On the other side there is also a contemporary myth that European societies used to be homogenous. Europe has always been a blanket of a lot of diversity. Always it has been a mixture of all sorts of people and cultures. Throughout the ages we could find a battlefield in the Low Countries. Lots of pieces of land changed hands many times, once belonging to the Romans, than to the Germans, the Austrians, the French, the Dutch. Even the languages and religion changed more than once.

Threat to the security and stability of the nation

Today we can find lots of people who say the land belongs to them and others bring their Judaeo-Christian values in danger. Though many of those crying about their values, do not have any of such juedo christian values at all. The 2016 Islamist fundamentalist attacks showed clearly how far countries as France wanted to go putting liberty of thought, freedom of expression and clothing at the side. France and Belgium so secularised took measures which went totally against real democratic rules and humanitarian freedom.

Big problem in Europe today is that lots of people do not worship God any more and do not keep to the essential commandments of God and as such do not mind not telling the truth, not loving the other, not taking care of others their goods or of nature, they even enjoy being better than the other wanting to have more than they have. For many, hatred and envy are the order of the day. We notice that hatred under Christians is nothing new any more. In the previously Chrisitan countries, we also come to see more hatred against religions in general, many thinking religion is the cause of all the problems. In West Europe we find many that much-vaunted bastions of multiculturalism have become No God Zones.

The last few years we also could see that several countries did not mind to take up again very discriminatory laws.  We could see that even in the so-called most free country of Europe: France; and also in the so-called most progressive liberal country Denmark where they even went so far to go for Nazi-laws.

Too many people do forget our world evolved to a world where lots of people go from one place to another and influence each other. There are already many influencers on the net who cross many country borders and bring people to change their normal and consumption habits, plus eating and clothing customs.

Best examples which show how it is going wrong at the moment, are the United States of America, Brazil, Hungary and Hong Kong. The States takes the cake by having a president who goes in against everything the founders of that State stood for. That country was built on the aspiring hopes of people who came from all sorts of countries, all sorts of cultures and different religious denominations. The land is created or grown by a mixture of peoples. In the few years the 45th president of the U.S.A. ruled he managed to destroy a lot what was build up in the previous decades and created a lot of division between the inhabitants of those states which should be unified.

Instead of all trying to come to one unified Europe we do find more and more people going against the tendency for unification. Several politicians want to create such hammock in the country people get fed up with politics and start wanting to do their own thing in the way they want to do it.

A few years ago there was the beginning of fear created by Islamist fundamentalists. Now an other fear was added. This time it is not the clash between Islam and the West, but the power of a virus, which destroys our free way of life as well. Religious conflict was the norm in the old so-called homogenous Europe. Often the Roman Catholics were the killers to be afraid of. They had a terror regime that forced everyone to Catholicism. The people having most to fear then were the ones who worshipped the Only One True God and not Christ. Many brethren and sisters in the faith had to hide their faith or even had to hide in less easy to reach regions.

The English philosopher John Locke put it, ‘to a foreign prince’, the Pope, whose values were incompatible with those of liberal democracies, and who posed a threat to the security and stability of the nation.

At one point in European history we have two centuries where Jews were seen even more of a threat to European identity, values and ways of being, so much so that they became victims of the world’s greatest genocide. Today many forget that the treatment of Jews as the ‘Other’ was not confined to Germany. It was a central theme in most European nations, from the Dreyfus affair in France to Britain’s first immigration law, the 1905 Aliens Act, designed principally to stem the flow into the country of European Jews. And up in the North lots of Jews got burned in their homes by Russian attacks against them.

In all cases we see that governments and people want to find a victim, someone or some people to point with the finger, to cast them as the cause of all misery.

In the previous centuries high society also looked downwards to the working class. The working class and the rural poor were seen by many as racial distinct.
The French aristocratic anti-egalitarian diplomat, writer, ethnologist, and social thinker Arthur de Gobineau, in his Essai sur l’inégalité des races humaines, 4 vol. (1853–55; Essay on the Inequality of Human Races), remarked already that

‘Every social order represents a racial variety’.

Joseph-Arthur, comte de Gobineau.

Arthur de Gobineau, French diplomat, writer, ethnologist, and social thinker whose theory of racial determinism had an enormous influence upon the subsequent development of racist theories and practices in western Europe.

In the Essai Gobineau asserted the superiority of the white race over others and labeled the “Aryans”—i.e., the Germanic peoples—as representing the summit of civilization. That idea is not killed yet. Also today in Europe as well as in the United States we do find people who cling to that idea, that the fate of civilizations is determined by racial composition, that white and in particular Aryan societies flourish as long as they remain free of black, brown and yellow strains, and that the more a civilization’s racial character is diluted through miscegenation, the more likely it is to lose its vitality and creativity and sink into corruption and immorality.Donald Trump does find this enough reason to make sure everyone comes to understand that, and that it are the white federal troops which are the ones who can and should have everything in control.

Gobineau insisted that

‘We imagine that we are one nation, but we are two nations on the same land’,

each a distinctive race with

‘perpetually contradictory spirits’.

The Christian socialist Phillipe Buchez, giving a talk to the Medico-Psychological Society of Paris in 1857, wondered how it could happen that

 ‘within a population such as ours, races may form – not merely one but several races – so miserable, inferior and bastardised that they may be classed below the most inferior savage races, for their inferiority is sometimes beyond cure.’

The races that he was talking of were not, of course, from Africa or Asia, but the working class and the rural poor. In this century some reflect similar words now also referring to those who work on the fields (seasonal workers) and those who do the jobs the ‘nationals’ do not want to do.

Gobineau’s writings were quickly praised by white supremacist, pro-slavery Americans like surgeon, anthropologis and slaveowner Josiah C. Nott and the Swiss American propagandist for the Confederate States of America during the American Civil War, Henry Hotze, who translated his book into English. They omitted around 1,000 pages of the original book, including those parts that negatively described Americans as a racially mixed population.

In the 19th century in many countries, the poor were

‘a race of whom we know nothing, whose lives are of quite different complexion from ours, persons with whom we have no point of contact.’

explained an article on working-class life in East London in The Saturday Review, a well-read liberal magazine of the era.

‘Distinctions and separations, like those of English classes’,

the article concluded,

‘which always endure, which last from the cradle to the grave, which prevent anything like association or companionship… offer a very fair parallel to the separation of the slaves from the whites.’

Just before the pandemic struck our regions there were already enough signs we were evolving back to a segregation position of modern slaves, the working class.

With the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic, we will have to be very careful that politicians and CEOs do not take advantage of this situation in order to corner the workers and exploit them even more because of the emerging economic crisis.

In the States, we see already how the president got so many people to believe that we should ignore this virus or Chinese disease and should all go back at work making our economy great again. For him, the economy comes first. Human lives are not so important and when they are black or brown they are even less important. For him as for some in Europe as well there should not be Corona restrictions, because they go against our liberty. All such matters to protect the health of people undermine the economy and therefore (according to them) should be annulled. Inc ase there are people dying from Covid-19 they should be considered as just ‘accidents de parcours’.

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Preceding

Tribes Redux

Trans-ability and Identity and Political correctness

Seeds from the world creating division and separation from God

Denmark votes in favour for a Discriminatory Nazi law

American Christians have to think twice before going to vote

Tolerance Ends When There Is No Tolerance Shown Towards Us

Francis Fukuyama and ‘The End of History?’

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Additional reading

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  2. Disturbing language inbalance
  3. Catholicism, Anabaptism and Crisis of Christianity
  4. Morality, values and Developing right choices
  5. Subcutaneous power for humanity 2 1950-2010 Post war generations
  6. 2014 Religion
  7. Europe and much-vaunted bastions of multiculturalism becoming No God Zones
  8. 2016 in review Politics #1 Year of dissonance
  9. Negative views of immigrants, Muslims and Jews
  10. Migrants to the West #5
  11. Built on or Belonging to Jewish tradition #1 Christian Reform
  12. President Trump shall have to recognise that Immigrant Workers Are Vital to the U.S.A.
  13. Secularism in France becoming dangerous for freedom of religion
  14. Christians, secularism, morals and values
  15. Being Christian in Western Europe at the beginning of the 21st century #2
  16. Need to Embrace People Where They Are
  17. 500 Years of Reformation Divisions Have Lost Much of Their Potency
  18. American Christianity no longer resembles its Founder
  19. What Steve Bannon really wants
  20. Is Europe going to become a dictatorial bastion
  21. Challenges of the Post-Pandemic period

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Being and Feeling, Crimes & Atrocities, Headlines - News, Lifestyle, Political affairs, Welfare matters, World affairs

Looking at an Utopism which has not ended

Marcus Ampe wrote a few days ago on WordPressUtopism has not ended” giving more clarification on his way of thinking and about his “Utopian Dreams“. In  a series of articles on his WordPress blog he continues to look at reasons why we should not give up hope for a better world and how some Christians and certain people are too much afraid for matters of social protection.

The Thousand-Year View from N.S. Palmer wants to apply time-tested ideas to the problems of our modern era and also took a look at Mr. Ampe‘s writing. N.S. Palmer preaches that we shouldn’t worry about things we can’t control, but it’s easier to say than to do. On that point we seem to differ. We cannot escape being in this system and having to live in this world at a certain time. But how we live and what we are willing to accept to happen plays an important role in our life. When people, living in this world, believe it could be very well possible to make it a better place for many, to some that might be an unreachable goal, to others it should be something to work at.

Trying to get a perfect society is something which we all should be doing. Though we agree only partly with Mr. Palmer who says

No society ever has been or ever will be perfect. {Utopia’s Biggest Problem}

him forgetting that one day Jesus Christ shall return and install the Kingdom of God here on earth. The Nazarene rabbi his government will be the most perfect governing body and shall give all its inhabitants the most perfect system to live in.

Mr Palmer further finds that

utopians waste their time and cause great harm by rejecting possible goals and pursuing an impossible goal. {Utopia’s Biggest Problem}

It is true that the goal set by utopians might be very unreachable, hence their name “utopists”, or followers of utopian dreams, thinking of utopia (1500-1600) being the imaginary perfect country in the book Utopia (1516) by the English humanist and statesman, chancellor of England (1529–32) Sir Thomas More, from Greek ou not, no + topos place”.

Because their goal can never be achieved, nothing will ever be enough. They think we should keep doing the same things, just do them harder. Spend more money. Take away more freedom. Police more speech. {Utopia’s Biggest Problem}

Such an imagined community or society that possesses highly desirable or nearly perfect qualities for its citizens may be presented in several authors their stories. A utopia focuses on equality in such categories as economics, government and justice (a non-exhaustive list), and does not focus on “spending more money” like Mr. Palmer seems to give the impression. Neither do utopians want to take away the freedom of people. Just the opposite they want to secure that there is freedom on all sorts of levels: freedom of life, freedom of thought, freedom of expression, a.o. but most importantly also freedom of choice under the condition not to limit others. That utopians want to have more control on those freedoms and perhaps would want to see more control of having all people receiving the same liberties and same equalities, may demand a controlling apparatus or police, but does not have to mean we have to go to become a police-state or a state of repression. That is the wrong vision a lot of people who are against socialism, utopianism and communism want to send into the world.

There are many debates about what constitutes a utopia. Many who are against any social feeling, what they call part of the “left” consider utopians and their world or societies they want to build, “utopias” benign or dangerous. Concerning utopia fitting or not, or being essential to a Christian world lots of contradictory ideas go round. Many ask

Is the idea of utopianism essential to Christianity or heretical? What is the relationship between utopia and ideology?

One of the leading scholars in the field of utopian studies, Lyman Tower Sargent argues that utopia’s nature is inherently contradictory because societies are not homogeneous and have desires which conflict and therefore cannot simultaneously be satisfied. Sargent notes that some thinkers see a trajectory from utopia to totalitarianism, with violence an inevitable part of the mix, and we have the impression Mr. Palmer might do so also.

According to Sargent:

There are socialist, capitalist, monarchical, democratic, anarchist, ecological, feminist, patriarchal, egalitarian, hierarchical, racist, left-wing, right-wing, reformist, free love, nuclear family, extended family, gay, lesbian and many more utopias [ Naturism, Nude Christians, …] Utopianism, some argue, is essential for the improvement of the human condition. But if used wrongly, it becomes dangerous. Utopia has an inherent contradictory nature here.

And that describes very well the difficulty of that utopian world for which Mr. Ampe puts his hand in the fire. He as several other Christians believes in the purity man can come to reach, in which innocence is in the heart of that person, enabling people to walk freely in nature naked, without others having bad ideas. In such a free world naturism would for example never be a problem, because all people would abstain from wrong thinking and wrong acts. In an utopian world there is no place for sexual offensive acts to the public sense of decency. There being no place for obscenity by people keeping themselves to pure thought the same as the first people in the Garden of Eden had. It was only after they had done wrong and came to know good and evil that they became afraid of the other and wanted to protect themselves by covering their body. Such covering in an ideal world would not be necessary, the same as it was not a matter to cover oneself in the 1970ies and hippies could share their places freely with others without having to fear something to go wrong. Nakedness was no problem at that time, whilst now we see again a lot of shyness and fear of nudity among many young people as well as some elderly people.

We do agree many of the boom children tried to create a perfect society in the 196070ies but failed terribly. Though we are not ashamed that we tried to stimulate others to step on the wagon with us (dreamers). Many of our generation might have betrayed their ideas, but Mr. Ampe like several others, as a follower of the Nazarene Jeshua (Jesus Christ) believes the teachings of that rebbe are still worth going for.

Utopians just ask people to take the responsibility for others and to respect everybody and everybody around them. They would never stimulate capitalism, like N.S. Palmer gives the impression.

 

At the moment we can grow unto more tolerance by learning to agree to disagree, as well by not being afraid to dare to engage in thoughtful political discussions. Though at the moment we still face the difficulty that not everyone involved is really interested in finding out the truth. An other problem these days is also that lots of people do not realise that disagreement does not imply evil. On that fact Mr. Palmer seems to agree and writes:

Calm, rational debate helps them see the underlying assumptions, strengths, and weaknesses of each person’s viewpoint. That helps everyone understand the issues better. It also helps them understand each other better. Screaming, hysteria, and emotional theatrics do not. {Dialogue Is Not Harmful}

We believe the Bible offers a way to live together peaceful and gives us a nice picture in the Book of Isaiah, what that world can and shall be. We might be utopians or dreamers for many, but Mr. Ampe with his brethren and sisters in Christ do believe those prophesies are going to become true, and as such shall their utopian dream once become a reality, though it still may take some time.

Mr. Ampe also believes we can be united and should try to convince those who hate certain people, to have them to accept them as co-living citizens with the same rights as them. It is for mutual benefit and the common good that people must be rational enough to set aside their differences and come closer to each other with full respect for each other and for other cultures.

Big problem today to come to such an utopian world is the egocentric and egoistic attitude of the present population.

We believe the Bible gives enough directions to come to a better world already now in our lifetime, even before the return of Christ. We do not have to wait until the wars to expect or the Big Battle or Armageddon, before we shall come to think about that better world. Already today, in our lifetime, we can show others fundamental truths of life.

Some might think utopians want all to become “puppets” handled by someone in charge of everything. But that is a wrong thought about the world envisioned by us. We are against any dictatorial system. It is a world whereby people freely agree to follow certain ethics and moral laws. We also do not say everybody has to do the same thing in the same manner. In our ‘utopian world’, there is enough freedom to act freely. Already now we can try to come to agreements to live a certain way, and this without any force or violence.

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Find also to read:

  1. Misleading world, stress, technique, superficiality, past, future and positivism
  2. Subcutaneous power for humanity 2 1950-2010 Post war generations
  3. Are people willing to take the responsibility for others
  4. Baby Boomers reaching retirement age, Demographic trends and New blood from abroad
  5. Lower and middle-class youth becoming tiny cogs in a larger whole that they cannot control
  6. Intellectual servility a curse of mankind
  7. the Bible – God’s guide for life #3 Fast food or staple diet
  8. the Bible – God’s guide for life #4 Not to get the best from our diet– or from ourselves
  9. Determine the drive
  10. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #4 Transitoriness #3 Rejoicing in the insistence
  11. The Scensual World – Mission & Vision
  12. Are Christianity and Capitalism Compatible?
  13. Francis Fukuyama and ‘The End of History?’
  14. The Upbringing of Ideas and the Extrapolation of Capitalism
  15. Utopism has not ended
  16. A famous individual by the name of Jesus of Nazareth

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Further related

  1. Utopia! 
    Utopia basically means paradise. And, in these times of social, political and ecological upheaval, to dream of a utopian world in which these problems cease to exist is completely natural.
  2. Utopia – Thomas More ****
  3. Broaden the Narratives: Mistaken Orders<
  4. Humanities Retribution
  5. Anarchy, State and Utopia
  6. Leon Trotzky
  7. Globalism: a Letter
  8. Money-Free World
  9. Alternative Earth
  10. The Citizen’s Convention on Climate: utopia or step towards change?
  11. Utopia….State of bliss!
  12. Technology, Utopia, and Horizon Zero Dawn
  13. Are We There, Yet?
  14. History Bends Toward Chaos
  15. “How will i get a cappuccino in your political utopia?”
  16. Why Common Sense Is So Uncommon
  17. Nothing Learned
  18. We Can Have Unity Without Unanimity
  19. How to Get a Healthy Society
  20. Rebecca Solnit on Hope
  21. The Blank Slate of Outer Space
  22. The Climate Crisis and the Need for Utopian Thinking
  23. And The Greatest Of These…Is Love
  24. An Ode Of Utopia

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Filed under Being and Feeling, History, Lifestyle, Political affairs, Religious affairs, Social affairs, Welfare matters, World affairs

Love in the Time of Corona

Human beings have grown away from nature and from the Divine Creator.
Their debauchery and carelessness about how to deal with the things before them are now killing them.

It has come so far that humans are to blame for the extinction of many beautiful creatures. According to a 2014 study, current extinction rates are 1,000 times higher than they would be if humans weren’t around.

Example of a significant historical pandemic: the Black Death, which originated in China and spread across Europe in the 14th century;

All through history we also can see when there were too many people able to destroy their environment, nature took charge and eliminated lots of people. In the past, there were many awful battles, wars taking the lives of many. After the Great War it did not seem yet enough. The influenza pandemic of 1918–19, also called Spanish influenza pandemic or Spanish flu, was the most severe influenza outbreak of the 20th century and, in terms of total numbers of deaths, among the most devastating pandemics in human history. It resulted in an estimated 25 million deaths, though some researchers have projected that it caused as many as 40–50 million deaths. Nothing compared to the Sars-CoV-1 infection. Sars and Ebola frightened many, but now the Sars-CoV-2 or CoViD-19 brings these 21st-century people also on their knees, fearing for their lives.

influenza pandemic of 1918–19: temporary hospital

The influenza pandemic of 1918–19: temporary hospital A temporary hospital in Camp Funston, Kansas, during the 1918–19 influenza pandemic. Courtesy of the National Museum of Health and Medicine, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Washington, D.C

Today the majority of people have become so materialistic their first concerns is to protect the economy. Still, too many politicians dare to tell their citizens they should continue to go to work and have the factories working, not having to be so afraid to come close to each other. There are even politicians who do find more money should be spent on the economy instead of providing health workers with the necessary protection.

We can only hope this pandemic is going to awaken many and bringing many changes to how we shall go to work and move around.
Fundamental shifts in the way we interact and live, in our interpersonal and business relationships, in the way we treat our families, each other, and ourselves, shall have to take place.
A few months ago most people took not the time to think about their way of life and how mankind played with mother nature. Since many weren’t able to find the time to get to meditate about our way of living, along comes this virus, which certain politicians still do not take seriously enough to take the necessary protection measures.

Where there is a lockdown, people now can find time to come back to themselves. It does not seem to be easy for many, to be confronted with so much time for themselves. But they shall have to rethink their lifestyle at the moment. CoViD-19 gives us all the time we need, forcing us into this shift = a shift, in our consciousness, our way of thinking and living, of learning, and loving.

*

To remember

The guestwriter of today thinks the planet is trying to tell us something:

We are on the verge of a sixth mass extinction with species experiencing lights out at alarming rates and any potential for rebound numbering in the millions (!) of years.

  • we have created so much pollution with our lifestyles => climate has become inhospitable + CO2 levels reach critical mass in the next couple decades
  • an only money matters mentality
  • Do we believe in our government or do we think it will fail us?
  • spiritually bereft we ignore The Power of Now.
  • fundamental shift in way we interact + live > interpersonal + business relationships, way we treat our families, each other, + ourselves
  • use this time to think about what your hands can do that will benefit your better well-being + that of those around you.
  • things to tackle > free time => use it  >>  view less as isolation => more as a Roto-Rooter for the Soul =>work miracles in your life.
  • safe in your home = shelter-in-place => give thanks < homeless population > no shelter = among most vulnerable among us.
  • extra time
    • look at movies
    • do gardening
    • choose giving
    • Instead of loneliness > choose levity.
    • Stay connected.
    • Instead of solitude > institute “bring your dog or cat to work” day.
    • Enjoy the shorter commute.
    • Take time for walks.
    • Practice walking meditation > take some time to meditate on kind of world you would like to be living in when this is all over => first dream it into being
    • Exercise.
    • be kind.

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Preceding

CoViD-19 warnings

Anxiety Management During Pandemic Days~

Hope on the Horizon: Pandemic Anxiety Management II~

Pandemic Anxiety Busters~

Mel Brooks saying “go home” to Max Brooks

Christian Response to the Covid-19 Pandemic

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Find also to read

  1. 2014 Health and welfare
  2. 2015 Health and Welfare
  3. The unseen enemy
  4. Making deeper cuts than some terrorist attacks of the near past
  5. In denial, Donald Trump continues to insist that nothing serious is at hand and everything is in control
  6. India affected by Corona
  7. Using fears of the deadly coronavirus
  8. Europe in Chaos for a Pandemic

Green Life Blue Water

It’s been a hell of a few weeks and it looks like it will continue for a bit.  At the risk of sounding both blasé and alarmist at once, I think the planet is trying to tell us something.

We are on the verge of a sixth mass extinction with species experiencing lights out at alarming rates and any potential for rebound numbering in the millions (!) of years.

In the process, we have created so much pollution with our lifestyles that our climate has become inhospitable and our CO2 levels will reach critical mass in the next couple decades without a complete overhaul of how we do business.

We’ve gotten into an only money matters mentality, and the stock market’s precipitous weeks’ long plunge not only put a hurting on most people’s retirement funds but eroded faith in the economy.  That event may keep us working longer…

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Aalst Carnival and Unia analyses reports

Area of action: Society

Grounds of discrimination: Racism

In December 2018 Unia pressed in anti-Semitism hearings in the Belgian Senate for the reintroduction of an anti-Semitism watchdog. The organisation asked Minister Kris Peeters, at that time responsible for Equal Opportunities, to take the first steps towards an inter-federal action plan against discrimination and racism. Anti-Semitism remains a persistent problem. The calls being made by Unia in 2018 were in response to a large-scale survey of 16,000 Jews in twelve EU countries by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), a human rights agency of the EU.

The findings of the report make for a sobering read. They underscore that antisemitism remains pervasive across the EU – and has, in many ways, become disturbingly normalised. Already in 2018 an overwhelming majority of survey participants felt that antisemitism was getting worse. They also feared for their own safety, and that of their loved ones. Though we also could notice not only the monotheist Hebrews or Jehudi were targeted. Jeshuaists and Muslims, worshipping the same God were not loved either and felt the pressure. Jeshuaists and Jews belonging to different Judaic denominations protect themselves by not coming out to much in the open and by leaving their kippa at home, only discreetly displaying mezuzas, avoiding certain areas in their cities or skipping Jewish events.

The many graphs contained in the report reveal a sobering picture of Belgium. Except for France, Jews do not experience anywhere in the EU as much hostility on the streets as they do in Belgium. Among those surveyed, 81 percent mentioned public spaces as the place with the most hatred of Jews. The European average is about 70 percent.

“These are figures that require a structural approach in the form of a vigilance unit and a plan that overarches policy areas,’

stressed Unia director at that time, Els Keytsman.

Already in 2018, a shocking statistic sended a clear message:

in the past five years, across twelve EU Member States where Jews have been living for centuries, more than one third say that they consider emigrating because they no longer feel safe as Jews.

In the meantime, we know about many Jews and Jeshuaists who left Belgium.

Vlag van het Vlaams BelangMuch too many people seem to forget how antisemitic acts can have a profound impact not only on individuals and those close to them, but also on the Jewish community as a whole. Several manifestations may bring forward all sorts of the types of antisemitic acts which we see increasing since a decade and by the growing popularity of two Flemish National parties, the right-wing populist Flemish nationalist Vlaams Belang, with a strong anti-immigrant message that succeeded the right-wing Vlaams Block, and the Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie (N-VA – New Flemish Alliance), a movement that self-identifies with the promotion of civic nationalism, which strives for the secession of Flanders from Belgium.

The last few years in Belgium and France we have seen an increase in desecration of Jewish cemeteries, vandalism of Jewish buildings or institutions, expressions of hostility towards Jews and Jeshuaists in the street and other public places, but also an enormous antisemitism in the media. It is incredible what we can find on the internet, including social media, where nobody seems to be willing or able to silence the hate-speech.
In 2018 antisemitism online was already seen as a particularly widespread problem: a large majority of all respondents in the 12 survey countries (89 %) consider this either ‘a very big’ or a ‘fairly big’ problem, and as many (88 %) believed that it had increased over the past five years. The percentage of respondents indicating that antisemitism on the internet is problematic is especially high (at least 90 %) in Belgium, France, Italy, and Poland. In Belgium and France, a majority of respondents rated almost all antisemitic manifestations that the survey asked about as ‘a very big’ or ‘a fairly big’ problem. These are also the countries with the highest proportion of respondents indicating antisemitism in general as a problem.

The majority of respondents of that survey are aware of legislation that forbids discrimination based on ethnic origin or religion – some 64 %–87 %, depending on the area, indicated knowing about it. They are most aware of anti-discrimination legislation in employment and least aware of protection related to housing. Most respondents (71 %) also say they are aware of an organisation in the country that offers advice or support for people who are discriminated against, but we should be aware that out of self-protection most Jews and Jeshuaists do not dare to react or bring the problem into the public. Respondents most often referred to Jewish organisations specialising in the safety and security of the Jewish community and/or antisemitism, and national equal-ity or human rights bodies. Lots of Jews and Jeshuaists lost their trust in the Belgian State and in Belgian politicians.

Fortunatelyserious incidents are today punishable by law. For example, in 2018 Unia was a civil party in the case against the vandal who caused serious damage in the Jewish quarter of Antwerp.

“Unia was also a civil party in the case concerning the attack on the Jewish Museum in Brussels.”

Last November Unia was calling for a more inclusive image for folkloric events and intangible heritage such as the pre-Lent merrymaking and festivity carnival. Unia said local organisers and partners can play an important role in this. That is one of Unia’s recommendations in a report drawn up following the controversy about the anti-Semitic float in the municipality Aalst, on the Dender River, 24 km (15 miles) northwest of Brussels.

Unia feels that dialogue and awareness must be a priority.

“What is offensive to one person is apparently folklore for another. Showing consideration for other people’s sensitivities can never be simply imposed by law. Only through dialogue can we take into account the feelings of others and learn to see things from their point of view. “

That is why Unia organised meetings between Belgium’s Forum of Jewish Organisations and a group of Aalst carnivalists.

“Their float – depicting anti-Semitic stereotypes – was unintentionally reminiscent of Nazi propaganda. We understand that many people were shocked by this connotation, and it led to a highly polarised conflict. We have seen that both parties now have an understanding of each other’s position and context. Talking to each other does not guarantee that stereotypes will never crop up again, but it is a start.”

It could have gone the right way, but this year, it uncovered the hidden agenda more clearly. From what was presented at the cortège was more than just laughing with something that bothered them. It was showing their disgust for another culture and other religion than theirs.

Much too often we hear the excuse

“For carnivalists, freedom of expression means the freedom to make fun of anything and anyone.”

Though, one should question how far one can go with mockery. Unia says

“Conversely, that freedom also means that you are bound to provoke controversy now and then, and you have to be able to deal with criticism.”

People from Aalst seem to have lots of difficulty with the criticism they received over the last twelve months.

Lots of events happening in Aalst real lovers of God would never come to know if they were not shown on television and brought into social media.
Thanks to social media, images of parades and festivities are reaching the general public on an unprecedented scale and are thus amplified and sometimes, or more than once, may be taken out of context. Moreover, while in the past, traditions were not called into question, this questioning has now become appropriate, Unia notes.

“As such, that is a positive thing. Folkloristic events can evolve according to changing attitudes and new insights, allowing them to become celebrations in which no one is left out”,

according to Keytsman.

We do find politicians and organisations for protecting civilians, should recognise historical similarities and see the dangers behind certain events, which, in the beginning may look harmless and childish, but have a very deep and dangerous undertone. Puerile actions may develop into actions out of frustration and dissatisfaction which generates aggression against certain population groups.

This year out of frustration, how they were treated by Unesco, everal people in the parade mocked the specialized agency of the United Nations (UN), using Jewish caricatures as well.

But, from what we came to see and hear in the media, it went much further.

Unia promises to collect all the information and will investigate whether criminal offences were committed. For this, they are in contact with the prosecutor’s office and the police.

We wonder how Unia is going to act or take juridical prosecution against the group who had their float a sign labelled

“regulations for the Jewish party committee,”

and it included a not to misunderstand sarcastic:

“Do not mock Jews”

and a shocking

“Certainly do not tell the truth about the Jew.”

which clearly indicates they have formed an idea about Jews in general and do want others to believe that Jews have something to hide or do not want to have the truth about them told. This means those carnavalists understand the truth about the Jews is not or may not be told!?!

Rudi Roth, a journalist for the Antwerp-based Joods Actueel Jewish paper, said the expressions of anti-Semitism in Aalst this year were more numerous and prominent than last year. He called it a

“backlash effect.”

Coming closer to the event celebrities gave notice not having free time to come to the parade. Several politicians backed out of appearances with Aalst’s mayor, who has defended the parade displays.

According to Christophe D’Haese of the right-wing New Flemish Alliance, carnival is not an anti-Semitic event and should be seen in its context of

“everything is allowed”.

He said the event

“certainly has anti-Semitic elements,”

the likes of which he said had not been on display since the end of the Nazi occupation in 1945.

With good reason Rubinfeld said

“Aalst’s name is now associated with anti-Semitism,and that’s partly because of the mayor’s inaction.”

With questioning eyes, we are very curious to see whether Unia this year will make a real effort to go to court and make it clear that what has been shown this year in Aalst has been far out of proportion in our society and cannot be admitted.

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Preceding

What to do in the Face of Global Anti-semitism

Anti-Semitic pressure driving Jews out of Europe

Perhaps Anti-Semitism for lots of people isn’t always easy to see

What makes you following Christ and Facebook Groups

A Jew and Muslim walking together side by side down USA city streets

Speaking up and Celebration of Purim

Numbers 10:10 Make Your Rejoicing Heard

Niet te negeren gebeurtenissen rond Joden in België

Hoe ver kan men gaan om zich te beroepen op Vrije meningsuiting

Aalst Carnaval: Unia analyseert meldingen

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  6. World remembers Auschwitz survivors
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  32. In Every Generation: The Return of Anti-Semitism – Pesah Day 1, 5779
  33. Luca Jahier, EESC President on the present intolerance
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  44. Pavé de mémoire en Belgique

     

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Perhaps Anti-Semitism for lots of people isn’t always easy to see

When looking at the recent heathen festival “Carnaval” it looks like for the majority of Belgians antisemitism isn’t always easy to see. Last year there were already anti-Jewish groups in the carnival parade and this year they multiplied like the Coronavirus, where not many spoke about.

Already for a few years now, we can see that in Belgium Anti-Semitism moved quietly through each of the lives of many Belgians — in a tweet, or a joke, or a conspiracy theory — seemingly not having just impact on those it directly touches. It impacts us all.

Strangely enough, it seems that a lot of Belgians do not seem to see or can not recognize anti-Semitic words, phrases, ideas, and caricatures for what they really are — hatred, bigotry, discrimination. I was not present at the carnival parade in Aalst, but what I could see on the Flemish television was something one could expect many years before World War II, but not after that horrible period. On one of the cars hung a pamphlet whit something which shocked me Só Much, that I did not write it down, for being able to repeat it here or to fill in a complaint against the hate message and the anti-Semitic words written on that car!

The call for Jews having to go to Israel and to hide behind the Wall can not be called Jewish-friendly. “Muur” (Wall) may be “Mier” (Ant) in the dialect from Aalst, but to present Jews as ants can only be called “a bit inappropriate”.

The major of Aalst and many people from Aals, saying one has to be able to laugh with and at people and circumstances, may call for questioning how far one may go with mockery with situations and with persons or religious groups.
Certainly, in these times of a horrific rise in anti-Semitism, politicians should point to the fact of such matters to their citizens and should try to bring them to their sense. Though, the major of Aalst always when he was given the word, seemed to put more oil on the fire by just to dismiss it as something that is not understood by many outside Aalst.

Together, we can identify and expose the hate that’s hiding between the lines. Those with any good feeling of ethics and decency should call for a reaction of  “Unia”, the centre “For equality, against discrimination”.

What is going on in this country should ring a bell for the democratic parties and should bring the European Union sound the alarm, calling the national government to take action.

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Preceding

The danger of having less than 25 000 Jews in Belgium

++

Find also

  1. Haat tegen verarming en tegen Israël nieuwe manier om Joden te haten
  2. Niet te negeren gebeurtenissen rond Joden in België
  3. Prinsesjes en carnavalstoestanden #1 Aalst Carnaval 2019

+++

Relating

  1. The fight against anti-Semitism is also a fight for a democratic, value-based Europe
  2. Luca Jahier, EESC President on the present intolerance
  3. 2019 was #4 a Year of much deceit in Belgium and the rest of Europe
  4. Auschwitz survivors providing a warning of rising anti-Semitism and exclusion of free thinking

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The Trump clan declares itself a Kennedy-like dynasty

Trump’s campaign manager, Brad Parscale, has said that the Trumps are set to become a Kennedy-like dynasty.

Ivanka Trump  blows a kiss to the crowd as she leaves the stage with her husband Jared Kushner  and her brother Donald...

Say what?

Parscale elaborated at California’s Republican Party convention last August.

“I think you see that from Don Jr. I think you see that from Ivanka. You see it from Jared. You see it from all,” he said.

That would be Trump’s Jewish daughter, Ivanka Trump, and her Jewish husband, Jared Kushner.

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Would it possible to have a Jewish president in the near future?: Please read: Possibility for a Jew to replace Donald Trump

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